Unemployment & Sickness Benefits

RR Unemployment & Sickness Benefits


July 1st, 2022 is the start of a NEW Benefit year for both Unemployment and Sickness Benefits.  The qualifications are the same for both benefits.  Your 2021 work year qualifies you for benefits.

To qualify, you need earnings of $4,275 in 2021, counting no more than $1,710 in any given month towards that total. If 2021 was the first year that you worked for the Railroad, you MUST have 5 creditable months of service for 2021. Credits for Railroad Retirement occur any time you receive $25 or more in compensation from a Railroad or Union source.

If you were receiving Unemployment benefits up to June 30, 2022 you do not need to have another 7 day waiting period for benefits in the new Benefit year. Only one 7-day waiting period is required during any period of continuing unemployment, even if that period continues into the next benefit year.

Railroad Retirement may, send you a letter to ask where you have been looking for work. Always, promptly fill this form out and return, to keep from losing benefits.

Maximum earnings for a 14 day checking period is $850. Benefit for the 2022 benefit year is $85 a day, with no sequestration reduction.

For Sickness benefits, Tier 1 will be withheld for claims that are not on the job related.  That brings the 2 week amount for Sickness benefits to $797.30.

File your paperwork in a timely manner.  The RRB is NOT going to pay benefits if a rail takes over 10 days of becoming sick or injured. 

The preferred way to file an Unemployment claim is electronically. Go to WWW.RRB.GOV and click on Login, then login.gov FAQ,  this will give you directions on establishing an RRB Internet Services Account.  You can still print out the paperwork and mail it in.  I would suggest you find the RRB office closest to you and mail it to them.

To file for Sickness Benefits, you must fill out a paper form to start benefits, the RRB is currently not set up to take applications.  Forms can be printed out from the RRB.GOV web site.

You are entitled to benefits of up to 130 days in the benefit year.  If you have 10 years of service or more, you can qualify for an additional 13 weeks of benefits.

Unemployment is subject to Federal Income Tax. Neither Unemployment or Sickness benefits are subject to State Income Tax.

Any other questions, contact Railroad Retirement at 877-772-5772.  OR go to the RRB.GOV site, find the office closest to you and use the send a secure message to the closest office.  The RRB will usually get back to you in  a day or two.  With the current Covid crises, it often takes several hours to get through to someone at the RRB.



Larry J. Romine

Reliable Retirement Solutions