File an Unemployment Insurance Claim

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COVID-19 Temporary Exceptions

Due to the impact of COVID-19, we made the following temporary exceptions for all Unemployment Insurance claims until further notice:

  • Waiting Period – The 7-day waiting period is waived for claims beginning on or after January 19, 2020. After you submit your first two-week continued certification, you will be paid for the first week of your claim.
  • Work Search – You are not required to look for work each week to be eligible for benefits.

Access COVID-19 Resources


Unemployment Insurance (UI) is an employer-paid program that provides partial income replacement when you become unemployed or have your hours reduced and meet all eligibility requirements. The following information will help guide you through the claim filing process.

Use the UI Benefit Calculator to estimate your weekly benefit amount.

When to File a Claim

File your UI claim in the first week that you lose your job or have your hours reduced. Your claim begins on the Sunday of the week you submitted your application.

If you previously filed a UI claim within the last 52 weeks and have not exhausted your benefits, you must reopen your claim to resume benefits.

Important: Waiting to file can delay your benefits. 

Information You Need to File a Claim

You will need to provide your personal information and your:

  • Last employer information including company name, supervisor’s name, address (mailing and physical location) and phone number.
  • Last date worked and the reason you are no longer working.
  • Gross earnings in the last week you worked, beginning with Sunday and ending with your last day of work.
  • Information on all employers you worked for during the past 18 months, including name, address (mailing and physical location), the dates of employment, gross wages earned, hours worked per week, hourly rate of pay, and the reason you are no longer working.
  • Notice to Federal Employees About Unemployment Insurance, Standard Form 8 (former federal employees only).
  • DD 214 Member 4 copy (ex-military only).
  • Citizenship status, and, if you are not a US citizen, information from your employment authorization document.

Tip: Use How to Set Up a UI Online Account (DE 2338H) (PDF) to collect  the information you need to complete the process.

How to File a Claim

UI OnlineSM is the fastest and most convenient way to file your UI claim. You can file your claim though UI Online during the times (Pacific time) listed below:

When you can file a claim with UI Online
Days of the Week Available Time
Sunday 5 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Monday 4 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Tuesday – Friday 2 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Saturday 2 a.m. – 8 p.m.

To file a claim or for payment information, representatives are available at the following toll-free numbers, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 12 noon (Pacific time) except on state holidays.

English 1-800-300-5616

Spanish 1-800-326-8937

Cantonese 1-800-547-3506

Mandarin 1-866-303-0706

Vietnamese 1-800-547-2058

TTY 1-800-815-9387

For general program questions or technical help, including registration, password resets, EDD Account Number, and how to use UI Online, contact us at 1-833-978-2511 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Pacific time), seven days a week, except state holidays.

Note: Representatives will not have access to your claim or payment information.

File your UI claim by accessing the paper Unemployment Insurance Application. For faster and secure processing, fax the completed application to the number listed on the form. If you mail your application, use the address on the form and allow additional time for processing. You can contact your local America’s Job Center of CaliforniaSM for help with mailing or faxing a paper UI application. The fastest way to apply is still through UI OnlineSM.

Unemployment Insurance Application

Select one of the following UI applications that best describes your employment. If you have been affected by a disaster, complete the disaster section of the UI application.

What to Expect After You File Your Claim

You will be mailed important information about your claim and the UI program. Be sure to read and respond to all requests to avoid payment delays. For more information, refer to After You File.

Important: Most UI customers are required to register for CalJOBSSM and create an online resume that can be viewed by employers. You must meet this requirement within 21 days of receiving your Notice of Requirement to Register for Work (DE 8405) form. Failure to meet this requirement can result in a delay or loss of UI benefits. Watch How to Register for CalJOBS and Post a Resume (YouTube) for more information.

It takes at least three weeks to process a claim for unemployment benefits and issue payment to most eligible workers.

If you choose to receive payments via an EDD Debit CardSM, Bank of America will mail you a card once benefit payments are available. Due to the high volume of claims being processed, it may take a few extra days to receive your EDD Debit Card in the mail.

If you received Unemployment Insurance, Disability Insurance, or Paid Family Leave benefits on an EDD Debit Card in the last three years, you will receive your benefit payments on that card. If your card has expired, a new card will automatically be sent to you once funds are available.

Note: If you were issued a card before 2015, you must request a new one. Visit Replace My Card on Bank of America’s website or contact Bank of America at 1-866-692-9374 (TTY: 1-866-656-5913).

If you lost your EDD Debit Card, contact Bank of America as early as possible in the application process to request a replacement card before your first payment. Your new card will arrive 7 to 10 business days from the order date. You have a couple options to request a new card:

  • Visit Replace my Card on the Bank of America website.
  • Contact Bank of America at 1-866-692-9374 (TTY: 1-866-656-5913). You do not need to have your old card number or speak to a representative. Choose the Lost or Stolen option in the automated menu. The call center is experiencing higher than normal wait times and Bank of America is working to address the issue.

Note: Bank of America representatives cannot answer questions about your claim or pending payments.

Payment information is updated daily and is available through your UI Online account or by calling the UI Self-Service Phone Line at 1-866-333-4606.

For more information on the benefits of using an EDD Debit Card, delivery, activation, tracking payments, expired cards, and more, visit EDD Debit Card.

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