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Unemployment Insurance Benefits - New York

Free Legal Advice and Representation in New York City

If you are unsure about whether you are eligible for benefits or not, you can call the resources below for advice. Also, if you are denied unemployment insurance benefits after you apply, you have a right to hearing. Members of the unemployment insurance coalition provide free legal advice and representation to unemployed New Yorkers. Please, do NOT wait for a hearing date to contact an attorney; contact one as soon as you request a hearing or receive notice of a hearing. If the attorney has to request more time, your benefits may be delayed. See the Hearing and Appeals section below for more information.

The following organizations provide free legal advice and representation to individuals with limited family income (including individuals who have lost their jobs and now suddenly have limited incomes).

  • Legal Aid Society Employment Law Hotline:
  • Legal Services for New York City Unemployment Helpline:
  • MFY Legal Services:
    • (212) 417-3700, Monday and Tuesdays from 2-5pm
    • Serving New York City

The following organizations provide free legal representation to individuals regardless of family income.

  • MinKwon Center for Community Action
    • (718) 460-5600
    • Serving the New York City Korean American Community
  • The Unemployment Action Center:
  • The VOLS Unemployment Insurance Advocacy Project:
    • (347) 521-5720
    • Serving New York City Only - Volunteers of Legal Service will give priority to claimants who call immediately after requesting a hearing.
  • The Workers Defense League:
    • (212) 627-1931
    • Serving NYC and other locations on a case by case basis

Free Unemployment Information Table

The UI Coalition also hosts a claimant information table at the Department of Labor's hearing locations Wednesday mornings from 9 to 12:

  • 250 Schermerhorn Street, Fifth Floor Brooklyn, NY
  • 59 Maiden Lane, 31st Floor, New York, NY

Advocates are available to provide information, review your file and/or provide a referral for representation . We suggest visiting the table as soon as possible before your hearing.

Free Legal Advice and Representation Outside New York City

The following organizations provide free legal advice and representation to individuals with limited family income (including individuals who have lost their jobs and now suddenly have limited incomes).

  • Find legal aid organizations in your county on www.LawHelp.org/NY
  • Legal Aid Society of Rockland County, Inc.
    • (800) 454-3627; (845) 634-3627
    • Serving Rockland county
  • Legal Aid of Chautauqua Region, Inc.
    • (716) 483-2116
    • Serving Chautauqua county
  • Chemung County Legal Services
    • (607) 734-1647
    • Serving Chemung and Schuyler counties
  • Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, Inc.
    • (800) 462-2922
    • Serving Albany, Clinton, Columbia, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Greene, Hamilton, Montgomery, Rensselaer, St. Lawrence, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Warren and Washington counties
  • Legal Assistance of Finger Lakes, a division of Legal Assistance of Western New York, Inc.
    • (315) 781-1465
    • Serving Livingston, Ontario, Seneca, Wayne and Yates counties
  • Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York, Inc.
    • (877) 777-6152
    • Serving Broome, Cayuga, Chenango, Cortland, Delaware, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Madison, Oneida, Onondaga, Oswego and Otsego counties
  • Legal Services of Hudson Valley
    • (877) 574-8529
    • Serving Westchester, Putnam, Orange, Ulster, Dutchess and Sullivan counties
  • Southern Tier Legal Services, a division of Legal Assistance of Western New York, Inc.
    • (877) 776-4126--Serving Allegany and Steuben counties;
    • (888) 767-1950-Serving Cattaraugus county;
    • (866) 664-4567--Serving Chautauqua county
  • Tompkins/Tioga Neighborhood Legal Services
    • (607) 273-3667; Fax: (607) 273-5521
    • Serving Tompkins and Tioga counties
  • Volunteer Lawyers Project
    • (716) 847-0662
    • Serving Erie county
  • Volunteer Legal Services Project
    • (585) 232-3051
    • Serving Rochester county
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