What is Unemployment?

lego man at a work desk

Did you know there were actually different types of unemployment?

Explore this Guide:


What is Unemployment?


Unemployment refers to a government program that is set up to help those who are unemployed. You can get on the unemployment program if you’ve lost your job and need financial aid while you search for your next job, or if you are unable to work due to a disability.


Some family members and dependents can also sometimes receive unemployment in the case that their primary provider passes away.


Unemployment is a government program to help those who have lost their jobs or have trouble finding a new job. Unemployment can help people in between their job searching so they can still pay their bills.


There are also several different kinds of unemployment:


Frictional Unemployment


Frictional unemployment is when people are simply changing jobs. Frictional unemployment is the period between searching for a new job and going through interviews before you land that next job.


This is also a voluntary form of unemployment due to an individual wanting to switch jobs or careers for their own personal reasons. Frictional unemployment is usually a short period of time and doesn’t usually cause too many problems for the individual or the economy.


Cyclical Unemployment


Cyclical unemployment is when unemployment rates go up during hard economic times and down during good economic times.


Cyclical unemployment is a common cycle that unemployment goes through during recessions vs economic upturns. Unemployment rates go up when the economy is doing poorly and down when the economy is doing well.


Structural Unemployment


Structural unemployment occurs when technological and structural changes take place in the world, the economy, and the workplace.


Sometimes structural changes and developments can create unemployment trends.


For example, when horse-drawn carriages began to disappear in favor of automobiles an entire demographic of workers began to lose their jobs while new types of jobs related to automobiles began to arise.


Institutional Unemployment


Institutional unemployment is when employment rates change due to institutional or governmental changes.


Many times these changes are long-term or permanent changes in the system that can affect employment and unemployment rates.


For instance, changes in government policies about labor laws, minimum wage, or workplace discrimination policies can have an impact on levels of unemployment while the workplace gets used to the institutional changes.


Seasonal Unemployment


Seasonal unemployment is similar to structural unemployment. The structure of a workforce is seasonal and thus creates unemployment during certain off-seasons.


This happens when the skills and services of certain workers are only needed during certain times of the year and not during others.


This might include forest firefighters whose skills are usually not needed during the winter months or construction workers who primarily work during the warmer months and not during the colder months.


What is Partial Unemployment?


Partial unemployment occurs when an employee hasn’t been let go from a job but their hours have been significantly cut.


Many workers need full-time hours in order to make enough each week to feed themselves and pay bills, so when their hours are cut down they fall under partial unemployment.


How Does Unemployment Work?


First, you must qualify for unemployment. If you qualify for unemployment then the government unemployment program will send you regular checks to help financially sustain you until you can get a new job.


Unemployment benefit laws vary by state and it is with the state that an unemployed individual applies or files for unemployment.


There are also different kinds of unemployment benefits:


Unemployment Insurance


The unemployment insurance benefits program is for workers who have lost their job through no fault of their own. This is the most typical benefit program for the unemployed and is usually run by the state.


Continuation of Health Coverage (COBRA)


COBRA stands for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. This act is a benefits program that helps continue health insurance plans for the unemployed.


Disability Insurance


Disability insurance is a type of unemployment program for workers who are unemployed for a short or long amount of time due to a disability.


This benefit program can then help support the unemployed worker until the disability ends or indefinitely if the disability is permanent.


Worker’s Compensation


This type of benefit helps workers who can’t work due to an injury or ailment they got from the job.


For example, if you get injured while at work and are unable to work because of it, you might be eligible for worker’s compensation.


Wrongful Discharge or Termination of Employment


If you’ve been fired from your job for wrongful or discriminatory reasons then you might be able to contact your State Labor Office and seek legal action or counsel for your situation.


You might also qualify for unemployment compensation if you’ve been terminated for a wrongful reason.


Welfare or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)


Welfare or TANF are benefit programs meant to help families reach financial independence and get them through financially difficult times.


Can I Get a Loan If I’m Unemployed?


Payday loans are small loans that are set up to be repaid in full when your next paycheck arrives. But what if you’re unemployed and still need a small, short-term loan?


Lucky for you, if you are on unemployment benefits, then you might still get approved for a payday loan. This is because your unemployment checks work very similarly to a regular paycheck. You get regularly scheduled unemployment checks just like when you receive regularly scheduled paychecks from an employer.


So if you are on unemployment benefits, you can set up your payday loan to be repaid when your next unemployment check is supposed to come in, just like you would set up a payday loan with a regular paycheck.


This way, you can get your unemployment check faster and avoid missing any important payments or getting hit with fees and other financial consequences of missing payments.


What is a Payday Loan?


A payday loan is a small, short-term loan that’s linked to your paycheck. The purpose of this loan is to help borrowers get to their next paycheck when sudden expenses arise.


A payday loan can help a borrower make important payments on time, like rent and utilities. It can also help borrowers avoid the fees from missing these essential payments because your payday didn’t come soon enough.


How Do Payday Loans Work?


Taking out a payday loan is easy. All you have to do is visit a payday loan lender and fill out a short application.


Since payday loans are connected to your paycheck, you’ll need to have a job and a regular paycheck to tie to the loan. This is why many payday loan lenders will ask for proof of income or proof of employment before approving a borrower’s loan application.


Once the payday loan is approved, the borrower will either provide their bank account information or a check. Your bank account information will be used to automatically pay back the loan on the date your next paycheck is supposed to fall. Or the check you write out will be for the total amount you borrow and owe the lender, and will get deposited by the lender when your payday loan payment is due.


This is why payday loans are so straightforward and convenient! You take out one small lump sum all at once and then pay it all back once your next paycheck does finally arrive.


How to Get a Payday Loan on Unemployment


Step 1: Visit your nearby Check City store.


Step 2: Provide the necessary materials listed below.


Step 3: Fill out a payday loan application.


Step 4: Get approved and get your cash!


What is Required for a Payday Loan on Unemployment?


  • You must be on unemployment benefits
  • A letter, usually from the state, showing you are on unemployment benefits
  • Your photo ID
  • A checking account


Other Loans for Unemployed


Check City offers many small, short-term loan options, like personal loans, installment loans, title loans, and signature loans.


Check City Signature Loans are available in stores only. To apply for a Check City Signature Loan, stop by any of our Utah Locations for more details and to see if a signature loan would be right for you.


Investopedia. “Understanding Your 401(k) Benefits: Tax Breaks, an Employer Match, and More 401(K) Benefits,” by Amy Bell.

The Balance. “Not Everyone Who Is Jobless Is Unemployed,” by Kimberly Amadeo.

ThoughtCo. “Understanding the 4 Basic Types of Unemployment,” by Jodi Beggs.

USA.gov. “Unemployment Help.”



written by Kimber Severance, Check City Copywriter

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