Call wait times for unemployment in Virginia reaches 2 hours: 'Go online!'

Posted at 6:30 PM, Mar 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-23 18:30:49-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- There is a lot of need in the Commonwealth for unemployment benefits right now as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

And that's only going to grow as more restrictions go into place.

Joyce Fogg, spokesperson with the Virginia Employment Commission, said filings have increased dramatically over the past week, and the state is doing everything it can to get them filed and pay folks within one week.

She recommends that you go online to fill out a claim for benefits as opposed to calling because call wait times are around two hours long.

If you do go online, she said to watch out for scams because there are some scam sites out there that will take your information or pay, so make sure you visit or, call 866-832-2363.

Here's who qualifies and when you can apply:

  • One day after becoming unemployed or having your hours cut you can file.
  • The Governor waved the requirement that you be searching for work to get unemployment, and you should get paid within a week.
  • Each case is looked at individually, but the maximum amount you can receive is 378 dollars per week.

Related: Virginia unemployment claims spike due to COVID-19: 'We want everyone to apply'