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How to reopen an unemployment claim with EDD

The EDD has provided guidance for people who collected benefits earlier in the pandemic, stopped, and now need to reopen claims.

SACRAMENTO, Calif — With coronavirus cases on the rise in California and more counties moving back into more restrictive tiers, California’s Employment Development Department (EDD) is offering guidance for how to reopen an unemployment claim.

People who might need to reopen a claim include those who collected benefits earlier in the pandemic, returned to work and stopped collecting benefits, but now are once again out of work or have had their hours reduced.

There are three categories people can fall into when it comes to reopening a claim, depending on when they last certified for benefits.

Within 120 days

For people who last certified for benefits within the past 120 days, they can access their claim in their UI Online account. From there:

  • Click on the ‘Certify for Benefits’ button
  • Select the week where you last worked or had hours reduced
  • Provide needed eligibility information for the EDD to reopen the claim

You do not need to provide certification information for the earlier weeks when you were working.

Beyond 120 days

If it’s been more than 120 days since you last certified for benefits the process will be a little different. Access your UI Online account and then:

  • Click on the ‘Reopen Claim’ button on your account homepage
  • Provide the latest employment information for the EDD to reopen the claim

More than a year old

If your claim started more than a year ago, you will need to file a new claim. The EDD recommends using UI Online for the fastest processing. You will also need to be prepared to verify your identity with the new ID.me verification tool.

For more information about reopening claims click here.

If you do not have access to a computer, you can reopen a claim by phone. Representatives for the EDD are available seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

  • English and Spanish 1-800-300-5616
  • Cantonese 1-800-547-3506
  • Mandarin 1-866-303-0706
  • Vietnamese 1-800-547-2058
  • TTY 1-800-815-9387

What to expect after you reopen your claim

After you reopen your claim, the EDD will send you information about it in the mail. EDD recommends you “read and respond to all requests to avoid payment delays.”

Separately, the EDD will email or mail you a Continued Claim Form (DE 4581). You will need to submit the form every two weeks to get your benefit payments. This is the same process as certifying for benefits.

You can certify for benefits online, by phone, or by mail.

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If you have a question about EDD or unemployment benefits, text it to the Dollars and Sense team at 916-321-3310.

WATCH MORE: Many frustrated as EDD, Bank of America freeze many debit cards