Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Starting a business and unemployment benefits eligibility

An SBDC client is considering forming a corporation to operate his potential business. By incorporating, will he lose eligibility for the NYS unemployment benefits he is now collecting? What if the corporation is dormant for a period of time as he get his business together - can he collect benefits during this start-up period?

The answer is...it depends:

From http://www.labor.state.ny.us/ui/claimantinfo/beforeyouapplyfaq.shtm

Q: What if I want to start my own business?

A: Notify the Telephone Claims Center before you take any steps to start a business. Unless you are enrolled in the Self Employment Assistance Program (SEAP), these activities may result in the loss of unemployment insurance benefits. For more information on SEAP, click here.

You are considered to be employed if you are engaged in operating or starting a business either by yourself, with a partner or in a corporate arrangement. Time spent during the day or evening or on weekends preparing to start or actually operating a business may be considered employment even though no sales are made nor any compensation received.

To contact Telephone Claims Center (TCC) staff:
Call TCC toll-free at 1-888-209-8124 from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. If you live outside of NYS, call toll-free at 1-877-358-5306.
Hearing impaired individuals, who have Telephone Device for the Deaf (TTY/TDD) equipment, may contact the Telephone Claims Center by calling a relay operator at 1-800-662-1220 and requesting the operator to call 1-888-783-1370. Service at this number will only be provided to callers using TDD equipment.
The TCC is less busy on Thursday and Friday afternoons. During heavy call loads, such as after a Monday holiday, callers may hear a message that all representatives are busy with other callers and it will be necessary to call back to speak with a representative regarding your claim.
Write: New York State Department of Labor, P.O. Box 15130, Albany, NY 12212-5130
Fax: 518-485-7377. Be sure that your Social Security number appears at the top right hand corner on all pages. Save your fax confirmation sheet as we do not confirm the receipt of a fax or written correspondence.

Q: What is the Self Employment Assistance Program (SEAP)?
A: State and Federal legislation has established the Self Employment Assistance Program (SEAP) which provides certain eligible individuals the opportunity to start their own businesses while collecting unemployment insurance benefits. In order to be considered eligible for this program, you must first be identified by the State's profiling system as likely to exhaust benefits.

If you are interested in participating in this program or wish to obtain additional information, contact your local Division of Employment Services office nearest you. Click here for the office locations.

You must comply with program requirements and receive written acceptance into the SEAP program before you can start or operate your own business while collecting benefits.

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2 comments:

Padmanaban said...

Starting a small business is essentially a best way to overcome unemployment, but here the problem arises. When a person is unemployed, he doesn't have any cooperation in the society to build the business and also money need to be invested. After solving all these factors only one can think of business.
jobs in india

Syobo said...

Here's my view on unemployment benefits and starting your own business when unemployed:

The State may require you to look for work full-time. So do it. Spend 8 hours a day looking for work, 5 days a week. But the rest of the day and your weekends are yours to do with them as you wish.

Start a business on your own time.