How to File and Collect Unemployment in Maine

If you lose your job, the thought of taking care of yourself and your family can overwhelm you. Your bills are continuing to stack up, your mortgage or rent is due, and you don't know where to turn. The first thing you should do is file for unemployment. The process of filing for unemployment can be carried out three ways: online through the Maine Department of Labor's website, over the phone at the Unemployment Claims Center, or by mail. To file your initial claim via the internet, go to, and to file over the phone you will want to call 1-800-593-7660. To file unemployment by mail, you will need to visit the closest career center to you for the necessary forms. Filing unemployment via the web is the quickest method.

To start your claim, you will need to provide your personal information and information about each employer you worked for during the last 18 months. You will then have to answer some additional questions that will verify your eligibility to collect unemployment benefits. If you were fired or quit your job, you likely are not eligible. You are very likely eligible if you lost your job through no fault of your own. The process of unemployment filing should be carried out as soon as possible, as there is an unpaid waiting week the first week that you are found eligible to receive benefits. After your initial claim, you will have to file weekly claims where you will answer questions that will verify your eligibility to continue receiving benefits, such as if you are looking for a new job, and are available and ready to work if a job is offered to you.

How to collect unemployment benefits is easy: you can elect to receive benefits on a debit card or through direct deposit into your checking account. Depending on the amount of money you earned at your last job, you could be eligible to receive benefits for up to a year, and possibly even a second year if you meet certain requirements.

If you are not approved after your initial claim, you have the option to file an appeal. Next, there will be an appeal hearing where all of your information will be reviewed again. If you chose, you can file a second appeal, a request for reconsideration, and an appeal to court.

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