Letter: New Jersey Unemployment Nightmare

I work for a very large company in Lakewood NJ that has some seasonal work.

With that being said, on holidays and breaks we are to collect unemployment insurance to offset the loss of wages.

What a joke! I filed in April 17,2022 and to date have not received a penny. I know there are many employees with the same issue. Most of us live paycheck to paycheck, and not receiving our benefits is the difference between making ends meet and becoming homeless.

I have called at least 30-40 times a day only to hear “Due to extremely high call volume your call cannot be answered at this time. Please call back on the next business day”. The very few times I did get through by a miracle they said “your claim has to be escalated, and that can take 4-5 weeks”. WHAT!!!

OK well it’s been 13 weeks and I’m still waiting for my week in April and 3 weeks in June/July since part time has begun. Also, I got a letter from them stating that I owe them money because I was employed for a week in April 2021 when I had Covid!!!

I have sent them proof I didn’t work due to covid and had to go back a week and a half later. They have deducted that money from my claim and will continue to do so until they fix it which could be another 3 weeks.

I’m extremely distraught. I wrote the Governor’s office with no response what so ever. All I want is what I have paid into and not have to worry about paying my bills.

I understand that everyone is short staffed, we are as well, but I’m at work when requested and so are many others. We should not be made to literally suffer because they cannot get it together.

Is there something that can be done? Maybe a class action lawsuit against the State of NJ Unemployment. I’m sure there are many employees that will join in, having heard numerous horror stories from people who literally cannot make it to the end of the month without the unemployment check. After all, we pay into this, we should be able to get it without literally BEGGING for it.

Thank you

Dawn Lopomo

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  1. I had to file in January and after submitting multiple times they still have no claim on file. Theres a FB group with over 20k people having issues with this.

  2. If you’re asking public opinion then my response is that the unemployment office should be shut down. Nearly every single office store business and school is DESPERATELY in need of workers. Every office is giving out bonuses and trips and free lunch to attract workers.
    All those who need to pay their bills should really reach out to any office store or business and get a job and steady salary! The Govt shouldn’t be paying people’s bills. There are tooonnnsss of jobs available and you can then pay your own bills.

    I apologize if you were not looking for that answer but you asked public opinion and that’s my answer.

    • Your comment is very insulting and ignorant to what I have been experiencing.
      After being laid off from my job 2 weeks ago I have been reaching out to as many companies as I can get my hands on but they can’t be bothered responding no matter how many times I send follow up emails.
      And yes, these are the same companies that continue to shout in all the local publications “Immediate hire! Submit your resume today!” but completely ignore you.
      I have heavy experience, a very good resume and very solid email communication/writing skills (when I’m not in a fury responding to stuff like this).

      In addition, 60% of the jobs are now advertised proudly as offices for women-only, which means that I can’t get any parnassah to pay my bills because someone else decided to start a trend where the only way to be frum is by having an all womens’ office.

      So your comment about how easy it is to find a job, and how amazing these jobs are and how many incentives they offer, seems to show me that you’re not currently job hunting and can only view it from the outside where it seems all lovely and easy.
      It’s brutal out there.

  3. While I do feel bad for you that you need to deal with state bureaucracy, there are other options, you can get a regular job and work.
    There are plenty of companies in Ocean County that are in need of employees all year round, where you would get paid on a regular basis and would not need to get unemployment both full time and part time.
    Unemployment insurance while it is nice to get when not working was really set up for people who cannot find a job because there is nothing available and not because someone only wants to work seasonally. In today’s market there are tons of jobs available so really only a select few should be collecting unemployment. Again, I feel bad you have to go through the bureaucracy but if you are looking to make ends meet then maybe you should consider getting a regular job as there are many out there.

  4. For all those, who are so busy with just get a job. As, someone who has just gotten laid off their job a week ago. And, is desperately trying to get a new one. Not that it’s as hard as unemployed, but is living hell. For all you know it, you are the manager of the company, that just told a few people, but we need more experience etc…. Not everyone is willing to take a customer service position where people literally crap on your head. So, unless you are willing to accept every resume that comes your way, and at least give them the interview, just shut up, and stop judging people.

  5. They are impossible to deal with can barely ever get through to them on the phone and even when you do they never help with your issue

  6. I have been running after my money for more than 18 months! Can you please give me the info on how to go about contacting Chris Smith? Which number to call etc. Desperately need the money. Would really appreciate it.
    Thank you

  7. Why are so many people criticizing the letter writer.

    Do you know what this person is going through that the need such a job?

    Do you know why this person can’t take an other job?

    Do you really think that its easy to find a new job?

    Please we are Yiden, HAVE SOME RACHMONOS.

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