In another shutdown, 6,000 in NM can file for unemployment

With more than 6,000 federal employees, New Mexico is one of the states that was most affected by the partial federal government shutdown in December and January. If lawmakers in Washington D.C. again shut down the federal government, affected federal workers can apply for state unemployment benefits.

Furloughed employees include those who are not employed in national defense, law enforcement or activities directly involved in the protection of life and property. A furloughed employee can apply for unemployment benefits starting on the first day you are furloughed until the day the furlough ends.

How to file a claim

There are two ways to file for unemployment: Online or over the telephone.

To file online, go to the New Mexico Workforce Connection Center which is open from 4 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Friday. Filing a claim takes about 30 minutes. You will create logins for both the New Mexico Workforce Connection Online System and for Unemployment Insurance Tax & Claims System.

To file by phone, call 1-877-664-6984. You will be transferred to a customer service agent to complete your claim, Hours at 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Information you need

You will need to provide your:

  • Social Security number
  • Mailing addresses and phone numbers of employers you worked for in the last 18 months
  • Start and end dates of jobs within the last 18 months
  • Alien registration number if you are a non-citizen
  • Gross income amount
  • SF-50 and SF-8 (if issued), most recent W-2 forms and recent federal earning and leave statements

The first week of eligibility is a “waiting week”; you will not receive benefits for that week.

People who receive unemployment are instructed to show each week that they have looked for work, but the government has lifted this requirement for furloughed workers for up to 180 days.

New Mexico will pay benefits for 26 weeks. If furloughed workers receive pay for the time they were furloughed while they also received unemployment benefits, they will have to pay back the unemployment benefits.