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Work Search/Work Registration FAQs

FAQ Topics
1. What are the Active Search for Work Requirements?
 
To be eligible for Unemployment Compensation benefits, you are required to do all of the following:
  1. Register for employment-search services offered by the Pennsylvania CareerLink® system at www.jobgateway.pa.gov within 30 days after filing an application for UC or EUC benefits.
     
  2. Conduct an active search for work during each week for which you claim benefits, beginning with the third week for which you file a claim.
     
  3. Keep a record of your work search activities and provide the record to the department when requested to do so, as explained below.
To register for employment-search services, follow the steps below:
  1. Go to the Pennsylvania JobGatewaySM website at www.jobgateway.pa.gov and click on "Register as a Job Seeker."
     
  2. Enter your name and birth date, and select "Yes" when asked whether you have applied for, or are receiving, benefits or services.
     
  3. Provide your complete Social Security number, and select "Yes" when asked whether you are registering to comply with the UC requirement to register for employment-search services
     
  4. Click on "Continue."
     
  5. Provide your personal information and click "Save and Continue."

    Note: It is crucial that both your name and mailing address are the same in both the UC and JobGatewaySM systems.
     
  6. Provide the information requested to create a Keystone ID (user name) and password as well as your Hint Questions/Answers. Click "Save and Continue."
     
  7. Provide the information applicable to you to complete your "Profile" and "Job Preferences."
     
  8. Once you have completed the registration process, you will receive a "Registration Confirmation" page. Be sure to print this page or write down your Keystone ID and Participant Identification Number for your records. Do not send the confirmation to the UC service center or Pennsylvania CareerLink® office.

    IMPORTANT: When attempting to register, if you receive a message saying that you may already have an account in the system, do NOT assume that you are fully registered for UC purposes. Contact your local Pennsylvania CareerLink® office to determine if you have an existing account and, if so, whether or not you have completed the elements to satisfy the UC registration requirement.
 
If you previously created a Keystone ID and password or registered with Pennsylvania CareerLink®, follow the steps below to be fully registered:
  1. Go to the Pennsylvania JobGatewaySM website at www.jobgateway.pa.gov, click on "Sign In" and enter your existing Keystone ID and password. You will be taken to your Dashboard (home page).
     
  2. Look in the upper right corner of the Dashboard for the "UC Registration Compliance" box.
     
    • If the box indicates that your status is "Completed" and that you have fulfilled your UC Work Registration requirements, then you are fully registered. Click the "View UC Confirmation" link and print the confirmation page for your records.
       
    • If the box indicates that your status is "Incomplete," click on the "Completion of My Profile" link. Complete all applicable sections (Work Experience, Military Service, Education, etc.) on the Profile Summary page. Once your profile is complete, return to your Dashboard and verify that your UC compliance status is now "Completed." Click the "View UC Confirmation" link and print the confirmation page for your records.
       
    • If you do not see a UC Registration Compliance box on your dashboard, contact your local Pennsylvania CareerLink® office to review the status of your account.
       
      NOTE: It can take up to one week for the compliance box to appear after your UC claim is filed.
     
If you experience difficulties registering for employment-search services, please contact your local Pennsylvania CareerLink® office. You can find the nearest Pennsylvania CareerLink® office by going to www.jobgateway.pa.gov and entering your zip code in the "Find your local office" field located at the bottom right of the screen.
 
Out-of-State Claimants: If your labor market is located outside of Pennsylvania, you must register with JobGatewaySM and the state employment service that serves your local labor market.
 
 
Your Active Search for Work
 
How to Conduct a Weekly Work Search
Your work search consists of two parts. You must complete both parts each week.
 
Part 1
 
For purposes of the weekly work search requirement, jobs are divided into two categories:
  • Category A — jobs that offer employment and wages similar to what you had before you became unemployed, and are within a 45 minute commute.
  • Category B — jobs that offer suitable work, but may not offer similar employment and wages and may be more than 45 minutes from home.
You may decide whether you want to search for jobs in Category A or B. What you must do to satisfy Part 1 depends on which category you choose.
 
If you want to limit your work search to jobs in Category A, follow these instructions: If you want to search for jobs in Category B, follow these instructions:
You must apply for at least 2 jobs each week. You must apply for at least 2 jobs each week.
However, if limiting your work search to jobs in Category A prevents you from applying for at least 2 jobs in any week, you must satisfy Part 1 for that week by meeting alternative requirements.  
If you apply for only one job in Category A, you must:
  • Apply for another job in Category B, or
  • Engage in a work search activity from the list below.
If you are unable to apply for any jobs in Category A, you must:
  • Apply for 2 other jobs in Category B, or
  • Engage in 2 work search activities from the list below, or
  • Apply for 1 other job in Category B and engage in 1 work search activity from the list below.
 
 
You may apply for a job in person, or by mail, phone or electronic transmission, by submitting a job application or resume to the employer, or by following a hiring procedure established by the employer. A repeated application for the same job is not acceptable unless there is a reasonable basis to believe that the employer's hiring circumstances have changed.
 
Part 2
 
You must engage in at least 1 work search activity each week from the list below to satisfy Part 2, even if you already did 1 or 2 of these activities to satisfy Part 1.
 
Work Search Activities
  • Attend a job fair.
  • Search positions posted on the JobGatewaySM system or Internet job banks.
  • Create or post a resume in the JobGatewaySM  system or post a résumé in other résumé posting services.
  • Contact colleagues, former co-workers or other individuals in similar professions or occupations, to make known your availability for employment or obtain information about available positions, prospective employers or other employment opportunities.
  • Utilize an employment agency, employment registry or school placement service.
  • Take a civil service test or other pre-employment test.
  • Participate in a program or activity offered through the Pennsylvania CareerLink® system.
Out-of-State Claimants: You may participate in these types of activities offered by the state employment service that serves your local labor market.
 
Substitutions and Alternatives
  • If you apply for more than the required number of jobs during a week under Part 1, you do not have to satisfy Part 2 for that week.
  • If you are interviewed for a position by an employer or an employer representative, the interview may substitute for either a job application under Part 1 or a work search activity under Part 2.
  • If you work part time during a week, and claim partial benefits for the week, you are only required to apply for one job under Part 1, and you do not have to satisfy Part 2 for that week.
Exemptions
 
The weekly work search requirement, or both the registration requirement and the weekly work search requirement, will not apply to a week if you satisfy one of the following exemptions for the week:
Exemption Registration Requirement Does Not Apply Weekly Work Search Requirement Does Not Apply
You actively participate during the week in a program or activity approved by the Department as an acceptable work search alternative.  
X
During the week you (1) are a member of a union that has a hiring hall or are registered with a hiring hall, (2) are required to obtain employment through the hiring hall, and (3) fulfill all requirements to maintain eligibility for referral by the hiring hall during the week.  
X
During the week you are participating in the Shared-Work Program under Article XIII of the Law.
X
X
During the week you are in training approved by the department or under the Trade Act.
X
X
During the week you are required to participate in Pennsylvania Profile Reemployment Program (PREP) at a PA CareerLink® under Section 402(j) of the Law.
X
X
You are unemployed for the week because your employer reduced your hours of work or laid you off for economic reasons and the employer has advised you in good faith and in writing that you will return to work on a specific date.
X
 
The exemption continues until the recall date is rescinded or has passed.
 
You must keep a copy of the recall notice.
X
 
The exemption continues until the recall date is rescinded or has passed.
 
You must keep a copy of the recall notice.
 
 
Keeping A Work Search Record
 
You are required to keep a record of your weekly efforts to find work. You are encouraged to use Form UC-304, entitled "Record of Job Applications and Work Search Activities" to record your weekly work search efforts. Copies of this form are available on this website and in this publication. You are not required to use Form UC-304 as long as you record the same information that would be contained on Form UC-304. You must retain your record for a period of two years from your AB Date. The department monitors the work search activities of UC claimants. Failure to provide your work search record upon request, in the manner specified by the department, may result in liability to repay benefits you have received. Do not send your work search record to the department unless specifically asked to do so.
 
Waiver
 
The UC Law allows the Department of Labor and Industry to waive or alter the active search for work requirements for a claimant if the Secretary determines that compliance with such requirements would be oppressive or would be inconsistent with the purposes of the UC Law. To be considered for a waiver, complete and submit the waiver form. IMPORTANT: In order to be eligible for UC benefits, a claimant must be able to work and available for suitable work. If you request a waiver or alteration of the active search for work requirements for reasons that render you unable to work or unavailable for suitable work, you may be found ineligible for UC benefits.
 
2. I am currently in another state, do the registration requirements affect me?
 
Yes. You must register for employment-search services in your local labor market in that state within thirty days after your Pennsylvania application for benefits is filed, but you must also register with JobGatewaySM at www.jobgateway.pa.gov by the same deadline.
 
 
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The information provided on this site does not constitute a determination of eligibility
to receive unemployment compensation.
 
PA Department of Labor and Industry