You can maximize your unemployment benefits in various ways to make the time between jobs more productive and less stressful. You can tap into your emergency fund, stick to a budget and regularly file your unemployment claims, among many other ways.
Unemployment benefits help you manage better the stress of unemployment. The benefits come in handy in helping you cover basic expenses as you prepare for the next phase of your job-seeking and employment journey. The unemployment payments may not be as much as the salary you were making, but there are various ways to make the most of them until you get another form of employment.
Tips to Maximize Your Unemployment Benefits
Unemployment benefits are vital if you have lost your job and need financial support until you are back on your feet. These tips will help you maximize your unemployment benefits.
Often file your unemployment claims
Follow the unemployment laws of your state to receive your unemployment benefits regularly. Most states need you to file unemployment claims often if you need to receive the benefits. Thus, you must file a claim for every eligible period you want to receive the unemployment benefits.
Apply immediately for unemployment benefits
If you are eligible to receive the unemployment benefits, apply as soon as possible to receive your first unemployment payment and avoid using your credit card or tapping into your savings for basic expenses.
Have a record of your job search
Most states need you to prove you are searching for a new job if you need to keep receiving the unemployment benefit checks. However, this requirement can be modified or eliminated, so check with the unemployment office.
Stick to a budget
While in between jobs, sticking to a tight budget will help you cover most of your expenses. Therefore, create a strict budget to help distinguish your wants and needs.
Other Ways to Make the Most of Your Unemployment Benefits
There are more ways you can try to maximize your unemployment benefits and make the most of the time you are out of employment.
Develop your skills
You can use the time you are searching for a new job to hone your skills or acquire new ones. You can volunteer or take an online course. Upskilling helps boost your resume and opens you to new opportunities.
Apply for an extension
Most states offer up to half a year of unemployment benefits. But if there are high levels of unemployment in your state, there can be an extension. But, no matter the case, do not fear applying for an extension if you need one.
Enjoy the time
You can embrace the free time you get and visit family, relax or work on your hobby, as long as you keep up with the job searches.
Unemployment benefits help to deal with the stress of job loss and help you stay afloat as you seek another job. If you qualify for unemployment insurance and find yourself without a job, you can make the most of the unemployment benefits.
Are unemployment benefits the same in all states?
Every state has a separate unemployment benefits program they administer. However, all states follow the same guidelines as established by federal law.