The state of Alabama pays eligible workers unemployment compensation after receiving a valid unemployment claim that requests benefits. If you're among those who've filed for unemployment in Alabama, checking the status of your claim has now been fast-tracked because of the new Alabama UI Claim Tracker tool.
Alabama Unemployment Claims During Coronavirus
The Alabama Department of Labor (ADOL) published some sobering statistics that reflect the economic pressure during the COVID-19 pandemic. For the one-week period that ended May 2, 2020, workers filed 28,985 claims for unemployment benefits, of which 19,452 were because of COVID-19. Translating numbers of claims to a dollar figure, during the six-week period from March 16 to May 1, the ADOL disbursed $503,011,424 to 206,694 claimants.
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Checking Status of Alabama Unemployment
The new online tool to track the status of Alabama unemployment claims went live in mid-April 2020. Dubbed the Alabama UI Claim Tracker, with UI standing for "unemployment insurance," claimants can also use this tool to find out the amount of their weekly benefits, know when their next payment should be received and process their claims further, if necessary.
The ADOL has been inundated with phone calls and a record number of claims because of COVID-19, which is why it implemented the UI Claim Tracker. The agency's goal is to help workers find information about their unemployment claims faster by using this online tool instead of being unable to reach someone by phone.
Accessing the UI Claim Tracker
Visit the Alabama Department of Labor at Labor.Alabama.gov. Click "Track My Claim" from the carousel menu options at the top of the screen or underneath the carousel at the "NEW! Track My Claim" link under "Claimants." When the page loads, follow the prompts to enter your Social Security number and the PIN you set up to access your account.
Temporary Claim Tracker Glitch Resolved
After an initial hiccup when the UI Claim Tracker went live, the ADOL quickly resolved the problem. A data breach resulted in the inadvertent sharing of four claimants' personal information. Immediately upon realizing there was a weakness in the tracker app, the ADOL shut down the tracker and fixed the problem within 30 minutes. The agency's technical team also put safeguards in place to assure claimants that the problem would not happen again.
Alabama Coronavirus Unemployment Benefits Eligibility
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the rules, requirements and guidelines for unemployment benefits eligibility have a different look and feel from the pre-coronavirus protocol. With so many businesses having to shutter and employees having to isolate at home, many workers have lost their ability to earn income. The overarching guideline is that unemployment benefits will be available to eligible workers who lose their jobs through no fault of their own.
The ADOL assures employers and their employees that workers may be eligible to receive unemployment compensation if a place of business must shut down its operations and it has no work available to its employees. But even if a company can still provide its employees with some work at reduced hours, the employees may still be eligible for unemployment relief. If a business suffers from loss of production because of having to shut down and lay off its workers as a result of COVID-19, employees may be eligible for unemployment benefits.
Claimants can find the answers to many more coronavirus unemployment benefits eligibility questions by visiting the ADOL's website.
- Alabama Department of Labor: Initial Unemployment Claims for Week Ending 5/2/2020
- Alabama Department of Labor: ADOL Has Disbursed $503 Million in Unemployment Benefits; Payments Represent 84% of Claims Paid
- Alabama Department of Labor: Home Page
- ABC 3340 News: Alabama Department of Labor Fixes App After Personal Information Revealed
- Alabama Department of Labor: Coronavirus and Unemployment Insurance Benefits