Public Service Announcement: Remember to turn off any VPN, Proxy, or Anonymizer services when certifying

Failure to do so can result in stop or delay of benefits

Every week, our hotline receives numerous emails similar to the one below:

"I live in New York. I wanted to watch a video that was not available to view in the USA, so I used a VPN to log in from a European IP address. It was Saturday night, and after I had watched the video I remembered it was time to certify, so I logged in the unemployment site but my VPN was still active. I received an error message that I could not claim while being out of the country.

I immediately turned off the VPN and was able to certify, but I got a message saying I was under investigation to make sure I was not out of the country! And they stopped my benefits!

I filled out some online form saying I was using a private VPN and also sent them a copy of my passport to prove I was not traveling. That was 7 weeks ago, and ever since I have not received any payments! HELP!

-Kyle B."
We've been following up with Kyle, and it took a total of 10 weeks until the issue was sorted out, and he received his benefits again from NYS DOL.

And this is why we are reminding everybody: Remember to turn off any Proxies, Anonymizers, and VPN services when certifying every week! If you forget, it might take a long time to sort it out, and during that time your benefits could be stopped. Call centers of unemployment departments around the nation are overwhelmed with support requests so it can be virtually impossible to reach a live agent.

The reasoning behind this is that while unemployed, you are supposed to be searching for work and available to work during the entire week. If you are out of the country, then it means you were not available to work that week. Many states check your IP address when you certify to see what country you are logging in from, and if an out-of-the-country login is detected, your account is flagged for investigation and payments are stopped.

So please, turn off your VPN when certifying to avoid problems with your benefits!
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Notice: Make sure to maintain unemployment work search requirements compliance.