When someone files a claim for Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits or for Supplemental Security Income, they are claiming they are disabled and cannot work. Disability is defined as the “inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months.” 42 U.S.C. §423(d)(1)(A).
Unemployment is a state benefit to protect those who have lost their job, can work, but currently cannot find employment. Usually, a person affirms to the State that they can perform work and that they are actively seeking employment. For example, in Alabama a person receiving unemployment must be able to perform full time work and be actively seeking full time employment.
As you can see, it is inconsistent to tell one agency you cannot work then turn around and tell another agency you can work. There can be severe consequences for drawing unemployment and also alleging disability, namely that the receipt of unemployment can cause you to lose your disability claim.
If you have a claim for Social Security Benefits and are thinking of drawing unemployment, please talk to a disability attorney.