An individual that applies for Pennsylvania unemployment compensation (UC) benefits normally can only seek benefits from the date their unemployment application is filed with the Department of Labor. In order to request payment for weeks that the individual was unemployed prior to the date of their UC application, the applicant must submit a request to backdate a claim with the Pennsylvania Department of Labor. Backdating a claim is only allowed under limited circumstances, which are outlined in 34 Pa. Code § 65.43a.
The following reasons can be used to support a request to backdate an unemployment claim:
- The Department is unable to handle all filings due to an excessive volume of telephone calls (6 weeks allowed).
- The claimant attempts to file by telephone, internet, or fax transmission, but the method used to attempt to file is unavailable or malfunctions (2 weeks allowed).
- The UC office fails to accept a filing as a result of error or mistake by the Department (52 weeks allowed).
- Sickness or death or a member of the claimant’s immediate family or an act of God (2 weeks allowed).
- The claimant makes reasonable and good-faith efforts to file timely, but is unable to do so through no fault of the claimant (2 weeks allowed).
- Causes due to the COVID-19 pandemic until the end of the current “high unemployment” period (52 weeks allowed).
If your request for backdating is denied and you are looking to file an appeal, please feel free to contact me at (610) 417-6345. I help claimants appeal Disqualifying Determinations issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor. Please note that I am located in Bethlehem, PA and can only represent claimants that are located within an hour from my office. I practice in the the following counties: Northampton, Lehigh, Monroe, Bucks, Berks, Montgomery, and Carbon.