Business & Workforce Resources

Got Questions? Athens Business Support Email at

The ACCGov Economic Development Department is partnering with other local entities on a business support email hotline at to answer your questions and share info with local businesses.

If you have questions related to coronavirus concerns for your business or seeking help with business and workforce resources and opportunities, send an email to and have your questions answered by ACCGov Economic Development or a local partner organization.

Community partners that will help answer questions include the Athens-Clarke Economic Development Department; the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce; Blasingame, Burch, Garrard and Ashley; Fortson, Bentley and Griffin; UGA Small Business Development Center - Athens Center; and the Athens Downtown Development Authority.

In addition to providing direct responses to questions, ACCGov will post answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the ACCGov Business & Workforce Resources web page.

Small Business Information and Resources

Please share this information with your network and neighboring businesses.

Contact Your Lender(s)

Unemployment Claims Information

For Employers

Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) services & resources are available at

GDOL Athens Career Center: Currently closed to the public to protect its employees and customers. The center remains open for GDOL employees to ensure support for customer needs and to continue processing unemployment claims.

Employers are mandated by the state to electronically file partial claims on behalf of your employees whenever it is necessary to temporarily lay workers off, including reducing their work hours or temporarily closing due to COVID-19. Filing partial claims results in your employees receiving unemployment insurance benefit payments faster, usually within 48 hours for claims filed electronically.

All Georgia employers share in the cost of the unemployment benefits paid to employees temporarily displaced due to COVID-19. If you do not electronically file partial claims on behalf of your employees, however, your business will be required to reimburse GDOL for the full amount of the unemployment benefits paid to your employee(s).

For Residents 

Your Employer May Be Filing Your Claim For You

  • The Georgia Department of Labor currently requires employers to file partial claims online on behalf of their employees. These claims will be for any week during which an employee worked less than his or her regular full-time or part-time schedule due to a partial or total company shutdown caused by the COVID-19 public health emergency.  
  • If your employer is filing a partial claim, you do not need to file. Talk to your employer.  Tell your employer whether or not you want taxes withheld. If you have taxes withheld, GDOL with withhold 10% for federal taxes and 6% for state taxes.
  • Unemployment benefits are paid on a weekly basis.  Payments will be released within 24 hours after your employer files a partial claim on your behalf.
  • If you file your own claim, your payments will be released once a written determination to allow benefits is released.

You do not have to go to the Department of Labor

The Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) has temporarily suspended in-person requirements for services provided by the agency.  GDOL is providing online access to unemployment services at

Please remember, your claim may be delayed due to overwhelming requests for service due to COVID-19.  

  • If you are sent home due to lack of work because of COVID-19 and you are not getting paid for time off you are eligible to receive unemployment benefits.  
  • If your employer is filing partial claims for you, you do not need to file.
  • If you quit your job or voluntarily choose to stay out of work due to COVID-9, you must file your own claim. GDOL will review your claim and determine eligibility.
  • If both you and your employer filed a claim, contact the local career center at 
  • Unemployment payments will be made by direct deposit or Georgia UI Way2Go Debit Mastercard.
  • Extended unemployment benefits are not available at this time.
  • If you chose to not work due to fear of exposure to COVID-19, GDOL will determine eligibility on a case by case basis.

How to File an Unemployment Claim

Gather your information

You will need:

  • Social security number
  • Georgia Driver’s License if you have one
  • Bank’s routing and account number (if you want to receive your benefit payments via direct deposit)
  • Work history information for the last 18 months

File your claim online

  • Go to
  • Select the link labeled “Apply for Unemployment Benefits”.
  • Answer the questions completely. Report gross wages and any leave pay as earnings for each week claimed for benefits.
  • Download the “Claimant Handbook” and read it.  This handbook has a section called “next steps” that you will need to follow to submit your claim.
  • Record your confirmation number. A confirmation email is sent to the email address that you provide.
  • If you do not receive a confirmation number, the application was not successfully submitted. Log in again within 24 hours and make sure you select FINISH to receive a confirmation number.  An incomplete application is only kept on the system for 24 hours.  If you do not submit it, you will have to start over.

What do I do after I file?

  • Request your weekly benefit payment every week at
  • On the first Sunday after filling your claim login and select “Claim Weekly UI Benefits Payments” on the GDOL home page.
  • Monitor your voicemail and email. GDOL will contact you if they require additional information.
  • Respond immediately to all requests for additional information.
  • You will not have to report to a career center.
  • If you have claimed a week of benefits and have not received your written “Claims Examiner’s Determination” within 21 days of the filed date, you may call UI Customer Service at 404.232.3001 (in Metro Atlanta) or 1.877.709.8185 (in all other areas).
  • For additional information or to submit a claim, please visit

The Department of Labor will allow you to file a claim and get information by phone, although you may experience long wait times. Call the Athens DOL Career Center at (706) 583-2550.

Athens-Clarke County Unified Government Business Support

Athens-Clarke County Department of Economic Development is available remotely via phone, email, and video conferencing to assist with your business needs and help direct you to available resources.