State Unemployment Phone Numbers and Getting in Touch With a Live Agent For Help With Your UI Claim

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This article was last updated on January 23

One thing many readers have been complaining about when it comes to getting help or information on their pending UI payment or current unemployment claim is finding a number to call so that they can get through to someone they can speak to. The challenge is that with the several enhanced unemployment programs now in place or being rolled out, ongoing staffing shortages at state UI agencies due to COVID work restrictions and ongoing system/IT issues with unemployment filing systems it is very hard to get through a live person that can help you.

This has been acutely felt with the 2021 unemployment extensions and for PUA claimants who had exhausted their benefits in 2020. With state agencies focusing resources on updating programs and IT systems to administer the UI program extensions, they have little time to take calls and actively help those desperately looking for help with their claims and wondering when they will start getting paid under the Congress approved extension to mid-April 2021.

That’s why most agencies are directing people to their website or social media channels to get more information. But a lot of time that information is generic and not helpful for most people with issues specific to their claim. So with that in mind here state UI agency contact numbers and some tips and tricks to get through to a live person. This is a list in development as I get more details, so please subscribe to get latest updates. If you have any questions or numbers/approaches that have worked for you please leave a comment below. This may help others or hopefully gets you more information on your issue.

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Jump to your StateFlorida (FL), California EDD (CA), New York DOL (NY), Texas (TX), New Jersey (NJ), Pennsylvania (PA), Illinois (IL), Georgia GDOL (GA) (more coming soon)

California (CA) Unemployment Number

You can see the regularly updated CA resource page for more information and reader comments on dealing with the CA EDD, but here are the best contact numbers for help with your UI Claim

Visit Ask EDD to request to backdate your claim if you think it has the wrong start date.

  • Select Unemployment Insurance Benefits,
  • then Claim Questions,
  • then Backdate the Effective Date of my UI Claim Due to COVID-19.

General UI questions and technical help with registration, password resets, EDD Account Numbers, and how to use UI Online: 1-833-978-2511 (English and Spanish). Hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Pacific time), seven days per week.

Note: EDD representatives answering general questions will not have access to your claim or payment information. To get specific claim support or information call the following numbers between 8 a.m. to 12 noon (Pacific time), Monday through Friday: For English: 1-800-300-5616; For Spanish: 1-800-326-8937

Automated phone line to certify: English: 1-866-333-4606; Spanish: 1-866-333-4606


New York (NY) Unemployment Number

Here are the best contact numbers and tips to get in touch a live agent at the NY DOL. See the New York Department of Labor (DOL) resource page for more information and reader comments.

  • New Claim: 1-888-209-8124. This is the Telephone Claims Center (TCC). Open from Monday – Friday 8:00 AM – 7:30 PM & Saturday and Sunday 7:30 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Pending Claims: 1-800-833-3000
  • Weekly Certification: 1-888-581-5812 (for regular UI) or 1-833-324-0366 (for PUA).. PLEASE NOTE: PUA recipients need to certify weekly. Regular UI should be certified online or when requested by the DOL
  • For NY.gov assistance or other website issues call 800-833-3000.

You must call This number here (833)-491-0632 (NY DOL LWA Certification) As I did and only found out through friends that they were receiving their $300 in Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) benefits and I wasn’t. Nor did I ever receive an email from the Dept.of labor(unemployment). Once you call this automated number and answer the (1 or 2 I forget how many exactly) question(s) you will receive your money In a matter of days literally. Please be patient, and LISTEN to all of the Question/options BEFORE answering!! GOOD LUCK (Bridgette from NY)

Like all major state UI agencies the NY DOL is currently experiencing high call volumes, so if you can get through to an agent and their website is not useful consider contacting them via their social media sites (e.g twitter) which seem to have the new updates posted regularly. Or follow me on twitter where I retweet pertinent updates.


Florida (FL) Unemployment Number

You can see the regularly updated FL resource page for more information and reader comments on dealing with the FL DEO, but here are the best contact numbers for help with your UI Claim

  • Reemployment Assistance Hotline for UI Claims – 1-833-FL-APPLY (1-833-352-7759 and choose option 5). The hours of operation are Monday through Friday 7:30 AM to 6:30 PM and Saturday and Sunday 8 AM to 5 PM ET.
  • You may be eligible to modify the date of your claim to the date you originally attempted to apply for Reemployment Assistance only if you were unable to file a claim between the weeks of March 9, 2020 to April 9, 2020.
  • Check your account information in CONNECT is up-to-date and accurate. Connect is the online portal for managing your DEO UI account is will be available from 8 a.m. to 7:59 p.m. daily, Monday – Friday (maintenance and processsing takes place over the weekend).
Business AreaFAQEmailPhone
Claims and BenefitsFAQReemployment Assistance Contact Form1-800-204-2418
Appeals – Clerks OfficeFAQAppeals Email1-800-204-2418
Appeals CommissionFAQAppeals Commission Email (850) 487-2685
Employer InformationFAQReemployment Assistance Contact Form 1-877-846-8770

You have to call 1-800-204-2418 option 5. Tell the representative your issue. They will send an email to the proper department. Make sure they send it and not give you the email address and tell you to send it. I was told to send it myself and 2 weeks later I called back and was told not proper process. FYI, I’ve been waiting 5 weeks for one of my checks I never received. Told it could be from 4- 10 weeks to receive.

You can also try and use the new use the new CHAT feature on FloridaJobs.org. But many readers have said this is still a bit buggy and for general questions only.


Texas (TX) Unemployment Number

Here are the best contact numbers and tips to get in touch a live agent at the TX TWC. See the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) resource page for more information and reader comments.

Claim status and payment request options are available daily, 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m (CT). General information is available anytime. Call: 800-558-8321

Tele-Center Phone Number: 800-939-6631; Business hours are now Sunday – Saturday, 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Central Time.

Other Contact Options:

your appeal of a TWC decision?Email the Appeals Department
([email protected]).
TWC customer service or for complex claim issues:Email Customer Relations
([email protected])
or call 512-463-2236.

Pennsylvania (PA) Unemployment Number

Here are the best contact numbers and tips to get in touch a live agent at the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry (L&I). See the PA resource page for more information and reader comments.

  • UC Live Chat – Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.​
  • UC Customer Service Line: 888-313-7284
  • ​PUA Customer Service Line: 855-284-8545; Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m

Request Backdating

If you are looking to have the effective date of your claim earlier than the week in which you opened your claim, you can call the PUA Call Center at 855-284-8545 OR you can send an email request to [email protected]. In the Subject line of the email, indicate BACK DATE REQUEST and in the body please indicate exactly when and how COVID affected your employment or self-employment and which weeks you wish to claim. The effect of COVID-19 on your employment must be due to one of the COVID-19 related reasons in the CARES Act for PUA eligibility.


New Jersey (NJ) Unemployment Number

Here are the best contact numbers and tips to get in touch a live agent at the NJ Division of Unemployment Insurance Labor and Workforce Development (LWD). See the resource page on this site for more information and reader comments.

Questions about your claim

  • North New Jersey:  201-601-4100
  • Central New Jersey:  732-761-2020
  • South New Jersey:  856-507-2340

Illionis (IL) Department of Employment Security (IDES) Contact Numbers

Call IDES Customer Service Center at 800-244-5631 for questions around your claim. You can also call this number it you were unable to file your claim because of capacity or system limitations or to discuss backdating your claim with a representative. See others experiences at the IDES forum page.

To certify for Unemployment Insurance benefits, click here or call Tele-Serve at 312-338-4337 Monday – Friday 3:00 a.m. – 7:30 p.m.


Georgia (GA) Department of Labor (GDOL) Contact Numbers

Its hard to get a hold of a live agent at the GDOL, and they strongly encourage you to use their online portal, but their UI customer service can be reached via 404-232-3001 or 877-709-8185. They also have a general number at 404-232-3990 per their official service directory. For more on the various comments and hundreds of comments around challenges with filing and get paid see the GA UI Forum page.

106 thoughts on “State Unemployment Phone Numbers and Getting in Touch With a Live Agent For Help With Your UI Claim

  1. I have been locked out of my account because it says i have to do id.me but every time i try to do it says i have to do a video call and it says my hold time is 3hr 53mins the time will go down to 1hr 58mins and then go right back up and i can’t get in touch with my local office at all anyone have any advice to help me out with this. I live i Ga

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