With social distancing and stay-at-home measures related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) leading to a surge in unemployment claims, the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services is offering a step-by-step guide to those filing unemployment claims.
Those looking to file unemployment claims can find the step-by-step guide by visiting unemployment.ohio.gov. Benefits are retroactive to when you became eligible. If possible, people are encouraged to file claims during non-core business hours.
According to the ODJFS, it has received more than 470,000 new unemployment claims over the course of the past two weeks. For comparison's sake, 7,000 claims were filed in the second week of March.
As a result of the surge in claims, the ODJFS has experienced slowdowns and shutdowns with its website, which has increased its capacity from 1,200 to 24,000 simultaneous users. In addition to reassigning more than 300 workers to assist with call volume on the toll-free line, the ODJFS said that it's working to increase the capacity of both its website and phone lines with an increase in claims expected as 1099 and self-employed individuals will soon be able to apply for benefits as a result of the federal CARES legislation enacted last week.