How to Apply for Disability Unemployment

Disability unemployment is designed to help individuals who find themselves disabled shortly after they become unemployed. The process to apply for benefits is intended to be easy and convenient. Completing your disability unemployment application quickly will help you and your family get the assistance you deserve.

Determine whether or not you meet the minimum wage requirements in your state. Most states require that you work either a minimum number of weeks or earn a minimum wage in order to file for disability unemployment. If you did not earn enough, or work long enough, to meet your state's requirements, you may be able to apply to receive a dependency allowance, which will provide you with a percentage of the determined disability unemployment amount for each of your dependents.

Obtain medical certification verifying that you are disabled. Many doctors will offer you this certification when they determine that you are disabled. If your doctor did not provide you with certification, you can call her office to request the necessary documentation.

When you call, explain why you need the medical certification. Many offices have provided certification for disability unemployment claims before, and explaining your needs will often speed things up. This certification can often be sent to you by mail if you are unable to return to your doctor's office to pick it up.

Call your state's department of labor office and request an application for disability during employment. This application can be mailed or faxed. During your call, case workers will often verify that you are eligible for benefits and are available to answer questions or concerns that you might have. Most will also remind you to obtain your medical certification if you have not already done so.

Fill out the application for disability to your state's department of labor. The application will ask you basic questions regarding your employment and disability, and ask you to provide your mailing address, Social Security number and your full legal name. Do not complete any information that is reserved for your employer to complete.

Return all documentation promptly. Most state governments require individuals to file for disability unemployment immediately after becoming disabled. Some states have deadlines that can only be extended if you were hospitalized when your deadline passed.

Contact your state's department of labor to check the status of your application if a lot of time elapses after mailing it.


  • In order to qualify for disability unemployment, you must be under the care of a licensed physician, chiropractor, etc.

    Send documents certified mail whenever possible to help track the progress of your application.


  • Procedures and deadlines vary from state to state. Always contact your states department of labor immediately if you become disabled while unemployed.