The Department of Job and Family Services administers the unemployment compensation program in the state of Ohio. The benefits program is structured to help unemployed workers meet financial obligations while searching for new employment.

The unemployment compensation program is funded by payroll taxes from employers in the state.

Claimants for benefits must meet eligibility requirements while claiming with the state.

Qualifying Wages And Employment 

When you apply for Ohio unemployment benefits, the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services reviews your information for the state’s eligibility requirements.

Qualifying Work Weeks

You should have worked 20 qualifying work weeks. A qualifying work week is one in which you earned $215 and above before taxes or deductions. This ensures that only those who have performed a significant amount of work receive benefits.

Insured Work / Covered Employment

This 20 weeks of work must be under insured employment, which is covered under the Ohio unemployment insurance laws.

Self-employment, independent contract work and work where you were paid only through commissions do not come under insured / covered employment.

Regular Base Period

The 20 weeks of qualifying work must also occur during the regular base period. The regular base period is the first four of the last five full calendar quarters before you filed for unemployment benefits.

Each calendar quarter consists of 3 months. There are 4 calendar quarters in a year.

If you are filing for unemployment benefits in Quarter – 1 of 2013 (Jan – Mar). Here is a simple illustration to show how to determine your regular base period.

Base Period

Alternate Base Period

If you do not have 20 qualifying weeks in your regular base period, Ohio will review your alternate base period for eligibility. The alternate base period is the last four full calendar quarters before you file for benefits.

Job Search Requirements and Weekly Requirements To File A Claim

Once you qualify for Unemployment benefits, you can move ahead to claim your benefits. In order to keep receiving Ohio unemployment benefits every week, you have to meet ongoing job search requirements.

Unemployment benefits are meant to be a temporary benefit until you find a new job. These job search requirements are in place to make sure you are actively looking for a new job.

Only upon fulfilling the below requirements, the unemployment check will be passed for the week.

Ohio Job Search Requirements are:

  1. You must be actively looking for a job.
  2. You must make at least 2 job contacts per week. Job contacts include filling out job applications and sending resumes.
  3. You must keep a record of all of your job search activities, including a record of all job contacts.
  4. You must not be disabled. If you are disabled there are different programs available to help you and your unemployment counselor or local unemployment office can direct you to those resources. (These resources include Social Security Disability).

You must fulfill these job search requirements every week and provide a weekly certification to let the unemployment office that you are meeting all of the requirements.

Be sure to have your job search record up to date, as you will be called into the unemployment office for a periodic eligibility review.

To know more about this click the following link –

Weekly Benefit Amount

The State of Ohio determines your unemployment compensation based on your previously earned wages. Even if you earned a high salary in the past, the state laws limits the amount of your weekly check to prevent you from earning overly large amounts.

Ohio is one of the states that offers a dependency allowance to those who qualify. However, the dependency allowances go above and beyond the maximum weekly benefit amount.

The state of Ohio calculates the weekly benefit amount for unemployment compensation by –

STEP – 1

Finding the average weekly wage

  • Adding the amount of wages earned during the qualifying weeks.
  • Dividing that total by the number of qualifying weeks.

For example, if the total amount earned in 26 weeks was $26,000, the average weekly wage is $1,000.

STEP – 2

Finding the benefit amount

It is approximately half of the average weekly wage, but the amount cannot go above the maximum benefit amount depending on the number of dependents claimed.

STEP – 3

Determining the weekly benefit

Ohio is one of the states that allow a dependency allowance for any dependent spouses or minor children you are supporting.

The minimum weekly benefit from Ohio unemployment is $115.

Check the dependency chart below to know your weekly benefits.

No. of Allowable Dependents Dependency Classification Claimant’s average weekly wage Maximum weekly benefit
                     0                    A               $826 or more                 $413
                  1 or 2                    B               $1002 or more                 $501
               3 or more                    C               $1114 or more                 $557

Length Of Unemployment Benefits In Ohio 

Regular unemployment benefits

If you are initially approved for unemployment benefits in Ohio you may collect benefits up to 26 weeks, providing you meet all eligibility requests each week. After you exhaust your initial 26 weeks, you may qualify for Federal Extended unemployment benefits.

Federal extension (EUC)

If your benefits are extended then your weekly benefit amount will remain the same. This is called the Tier 1 program. If you were actively seeking, but unable to seek employment within the Tier 1 program you may qualify for the Tier 2 program, which may be a lower benefit amount than the initial 26 weeks or the Tier 1 program.

The additional weeks of benefits through the temporary federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) [program enacted in 2008] is 37 weeks for the State of Ohio. EUC for a State is decided on the basis of its unemployment rate.

In shorter words –

  • Regular unemployment insurance from the State of Ohio is available for 26 weeks.
  • Federal extension for unemployment compensation is available for 37 weeks.
  • The maximum total number of weeks available to claim unemployment compensation in Ohio is – 63 weeks.