The unemployment insurance (UI) program is intended to help individuals who have experienced a loss of wages due to temporary unemployment. The UI program is organized by the New Mexico Department of Work Solutions (DWS), and all employment services are offered in both English and Spanish.
To qualify for UI benefits in New Mexico, you must be completely unemployed through no fault of your own. At the same time, you must available to work and willing to take on full-time employment offered to you by the DWS. Moreover, you must have worked in New Mexico for the past 12 to 18 months, and you must be able to prove that you have earned wages in the state for this period. As part of the application process, your employer will need to fill out a questionnaire regarding your reason for separation from employment. Therefore, you must be honest and accurate about your employment history, as your last employer will need to confirm the “story” that you have provided to the DWS. In the case that supporting documentation is required to process your claim, you will need to send all additional information to the DWS within 10 days of receiving the notice for support.
To qualify for UI benefits, you must have earned enough wages within a specific 12-month period known as your “base period.” This base period consists of the first four quarters out of the last five completed quarters of the calendar year. However, you can also qualify for an alternate base period if you have not earned enough wages in this base period. The alternate period is made up of the last four completed quarters. In particular, your weekly and maximum benefit amounts will be determined based on the total wages earned during one of these two periods. For instance, your weekly benefit amount will be approximately 53 percent of your average weekly wages from your high quarter, which is the quarter in which you earned the most wages. Furthermore, you must have earned wages in at least two of the four quarters in your base period, and a minimum of $1600 in your high quarter.
In New Mexico, you cannot receive more than $457 per week or less than $76 per week in UI benefits. You are also limited to the number of weeks for which you can receive these benefit payments. In one benefit year, which is made up of 52 weeks, you can receive UI benefits for a maximum of 26 weeks. At the start of this period, you must serve a one-week waiting period in which you will not be paid and you cannot work. This waiting period is mandatory for all claimants.
You cannot submit a UI claim or benefit from the UI program if you are out of state. Once you are in the state of New Mexico, the easiest way to file a claim is by telephone; you can contact 1-877-664-6984. The application process will take about 30 minutes to complete. In specific, you will need your Social Security Number (SSN) and the details of your employment history from the last 18 months; however, you may be asked to submit supporting documentation before your application can be processed.