What we do

Unemployment Insurance Project

Thousands of North Carolinians have lost their jobs due to COVID-19 and are seeking financial assistance through the state’s Unemployment Insurance Program.

The overwhelming volume of applications paired with implementing new assistance programs under the federal CARES Act has caused significant delays, making the process more confusing for applicants trying to apply.

Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy’s Unemployment Insurance Project helps people who have lost work due to COVID-19 understand their eligibility and navigate the application process to receive unemployment benefits and remain financially stable.

While Advocacy Center staff cannot help applicants fill out the necessary paperwork, they can answer questions about the process and help applicants understand their rights.

The Advocacy Center also advocates to strengthen the financial safety net for N.C.’s unemployed workers by expanding access to the state’s Unemployment Insurance Program during COVID-19 and beyond.

The New CARES Act:

  • Provides additional benefits, increasing your weekly benefit amount.
  • Increases the length of time you are eligible for the benefits.
  • Expands eligibility for unemployment benefits to individuals who:
    • are self-employed,
    • are independent contractors or freelancers,
    • are seeking part time work,
    • have little to no work history, or
    • are taking care of children who are out of school.
    • You may qualify even if you’ve already exhausted your benefits.
    • You do not need to be actively looking for work during the COVID-19
    • crisis to qualify

Learn more about the CARES Act Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for workers who are self-employed or independent contractors.

How to apply for unemployment benefits:

Get Help:

Anyone needing assistance can call the Unemployment Insurance COVID-19 Response Project hotline 980-256-3979 and leave a message to receive assistance in English or Spanish.

More resources:

Unemployment Insurance FAQs
Unemployment Insurance and Immigration