As Jobless Claims Skyrocket, Here's How to Apply for Unemployment in Florida

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With some federal officials warning that the United States unemployment rate could skyrocket to 20%, getting help will be job No. 1 for many Floridians. Filing for unemployment is one way to do that. 

In Florida, the unemployment program is called the Reemployment Assistance Program and it is taking applications now, although the website is very busy.

Who qualifies? 

“If you are ordered to self-isolate by a medical professional, government agency,  if you are laid off or sent home without pay by your employer because of COVID-19 concerns, or if you’re caring for an immediate family member who is diagnosed with COVID-19,” said Florida Governor Ron DeSantis during a Tuesday media briefing.

On its website, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity has produced a short video about the application process and the information you will need. That information includes a Social Security number and driver's license, along with employment information from the past 18 months. 

The amount of money you can get varies by your salary but has a weekly cap of $275. Only Mississippi ($235), Arizona ($240) and Louisiana ($247) pay less.    By comparison, Massachusetts pays $823 per week followed by Washington ($790) and Minnesota ($740). 

Florida will pay out unemployment benefits for 12 weeks. Only North Carolina does the same. Most states pay for 26 weeks. 

Some non-U-S citizens legally working here are eligible for unemployment benefits.  

You are not eligible to receive assistance if your employment has been affected, but you are still receiving wages through paid leave.

For more information and to apply, go to click here.

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