Alabama adds requirement for unemployment insurance eligibility

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) signed Senate Bill 224 on April 12, requiring unemployment insurance claimants to contact at least three prospective employers each week during their benefits period to remain eligible for payments. The bill defines a contact as an application or other genuine solicitation for an open job. The Alabama Department of Labor will also have to audit about 5% of the contacts to make sure they comply with regulations under the new law.

SB 224 takes effect Jan. 2023. Alabama law currently requires claimants to contact one prospective employer each week to maintain benefits eligibility.

Unemployment insurance refers to a joint federal and state program that provides temporary monetary benefits to eligible laid-off workers who are actively seeking new employment. Qualifying individuals receive unemployment compensation as a percentage of their lost wages in the form of weekly cash benefits while they search for new employment.

The federal government oversees the general administration of state unemployment insurance programs. The states control the specific features of their unemployment insurance programs, such as eligibility requirements and length of benefits.

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