How to Apply for Unemployment Benefits in Tennessee 2023

Many Tennesseans rely on unemployment benefits to make ends meet. These benefits can help cover bills and other expenses while you look for new employment.

If your unemployment claim is denied in Tennessee, you should be aware of the following steps you need to take.

This post provides an overview of Tennessee’s unemployment benefits application process, what to expect after you apply, and why it is essential to ensure your claim is handled correctly.

What Is The Unemployment Benefit?

The unemployment benefit is a financial safety net provided by the government to those who have lost their job. The benefit helps to cover the costs of living and allows the unemployed worker to search for a new job without the added stress of worrying about how they will make ends meet.

In summary, The unemployment benefit is a payment that unemployed people can receive from their government. They must demonstrate that they are actively looking for work in exchange for this money. They also must not have lost their job through any fault of their own.

Looking for benefits in Georgia? See how To Apply For Unemployment In Georgia.

How Does Unemployment Benefit Work in Tennessee?

In Tennessee, you may file unemployment benefits if you are jobless through no fault of your own or if you are sacked. If you work in a seasonal industry, you should be eligible for unemployment benefits even if the season has yet to end.

When you apply for unemployment, The state will evaluate your income and employment over the past year to determine if you are eligible for benefits. 

Time worked, and earnings will be factored into the decision, with those who worked more hours or earned a higher income being ineligible for benefits after a certain period.

You may get up to 26 weeks of benefits if you are eligible for unemployment. These benefits are paid once per week. Especially on Thursdays, either by direct deposit into your bank account or by check mailed to your address.

See also: How To File For Illinois Unemployment In 2022

Who Is Eligible to Receive Unemployment Benefits in Tennessee?

To be qualified for unemployment benefits in Tennessee, you need to meet specific requirements set by the state. These requirements are:

  • You must be able to work and willing to work.
  • You were let go from your job, but it was not your fault.
  • The minimum earnings requirement must be met.
  • Be proactive in looking for work.

See How to Apply for Unemployment in Connecticut. Here’s the best guide.

What Are the Requirements for Applying for Unemployment Benefits in Tennessee?

If you’re eligible for unemployment benefits, there are some requirements you must meet:

  • You must be able to work, ready to work, and actively looking for a position.
  • You must have earned at least $780 in two different quarters, with the second-highest quarter totaling more than $900, or six times the weekly benefit amount.

How to Apply for Unemployment Benefits in Tennessee Online

If you’ve recently lost your job and are looking to file for unemployment benefits in Tennessee, you may wonder how to get started. Fortunately, the application process is easy and fast.

Our guide on How To Apply For Unemployment In North Carolina NC will interest you.

You can apply for unemployment benefits online in Tennessee. The website is easy to navigate and provides step-by-step instructions on how to file your claim. You’ll need to provide the following information:

  • Social Security number
  • Drivers license number
  • Phone number
  • Address
  • Valid email address
  • Banking information
  • The last day you worked.
  • The reason you left your last workplace
  • Employer’s information

Once you have all these requirements, you can apply HERE online.

Now, you must choose how you want to receive your benefits payments. You can opt for direct deposit, a debit card, or a paper check. Be sure to make your selection when you apply for benefits.

Once you complete the application, you’ll get a determination letter. The letter will tell you if your claim was successful and how much your weekly benefit amount will be.

If your claim is denied, you may appeal the decision if the reason for denial does not relate to work activity that occurred before your last day of employment.

You must complete at least three job search activities weekly to remain eligible for benefits. If you claim to have completed an action when you have yet to, you may lose your benefits for up to eight weeks.

Learn How To Apply For Unemployment In New Mexico. This is the full guide.

What To Do If You Are Denied Unemployment Benefits In Tennessee?

If your unemployment benefits claim is denied in Tennessee, you may file an appeal at most fifteen days from the date of determination notice.

The first step is filing an appeal notice with the Unemployment Appeals Division. You may file your appeal online or by mail.

Be sure to include all relevant information and supporting documentation with your appeal. You must file your weekly claims regularly to ensure you are paid for the weeks you have filed, should you win your request.

Here’s How To Apply For Unemployment In Virginia. Find out within!

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply for unemployment benefits in Tennessee by phone?

To apply for unemployment benefits in Tennessee by phone, you need to call the Department of Labor and Workforce Development at 844-224-5818. You will be prompted to enter your Social Security Number when you call this number. 
Once you have entered your Social Security Number, you will be asked to verify your identity by answering several questions. 
After you have verified your identity, you will be prompted to provide information about your employment history and the reason for your unemployment.  
Once you have given all the information, you will be asked to confirm your eligibility for unemployment benefits. If you are eligible for unemployment benefits, you will be asked to choose a payment method and provide your bank account information.

How long will I receive unemployment benefits in Tennessee?

Benefits can be paid for up to 26 weeks in one year, depending on the circumstances. The amount you receive in benefits is determined by your weekly earnings and the amount of time you’ve worked during your base period.

Why did I get disqualified from receiving benefits?

If you are ruled out from receiving benefits, you will be notified. The notice will explain why you are no longer eligible for benefits and tell you what action steps to take next.
The most common reasons for disqualification are:
You left your job without good reason or without giving proper notice: Quitting without good cause means that there was no good reason for leaving the job and that nobody forced you to quit. If this happens, you may have to refund all or part of any unemployment benefits received while employed.
Insubordination: If you have been fired from your job, you may be able to receive unemployment benefits. However, if you were terminated for disobedience, the chances of being approved for unemployment benefits are slim. 
Insubordination is a refusal to obey authority or order. If your employer had a legitimate reason to terminate you and it was not retaliatory, then you may not be eligible for benefits.
Embezzlement: Embezzlement is a serious crime and can affect your ability to collect benefits. If you were convicted of embezzling funds from your employer, the state might disqualify you from receiving unemployment benefits. 
The longevity of time you are disqualified depends on how much money was involved and whether it was the first offense.
Inflicting bodily harm on co-employee: In most cases, you may be banned from receiving benefits if you have intentionally imposed bodily injury on another employee or engaged in a violent act that has caused physical harm.
Insufficient Earnings: One common reason people are disqualified from receiving disability benefits is that they don’t have enough earnings history to qualify. 
To receive benefits, you must have worked long enough and paid into the system during your working years so that the agency has an established record of your earnings.
Self-Employment: You may be disqualified from receiving benefits if you are self-employed. For instance, if you are a contractor or a freelancer who is not an employee of any company, you may not be able to receive unemployment benefits.
Not Looking for a Job: The law requires you to actively seek work to receive unemployment insurance benefits. This means that you must be prepared and able to accept suitable employment at any time during your base period. You must also make reasonable efforts to obtain employment.
Unexcused absences: You could be disqualified if you have too many unexcused absences. Unexcused absences are days when you were absent from work without permission.
When you apply for unemployment benefits, there’s a chance that you might be disqualified because of unexcused absences from your job.


So, if you’re unemployed, applying for unemployment won’t be something too new for you. Unemployment benefits are a much-needed government service for you during your time of hardship, so make sure to take full advantage of them.

The most important thing to remember while collecting unemployment is to avoid violating your qualifications’ conditions. The requirements vary by state, but the general rule is that you must actively seek employment when you collect unemployment.



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