According to an article in the Star-Telegram, unemployed residents are often faced with long waits and busy signals when calling the Texas Workforce Commission regarding their unemployment claims. The rise in job losses have put a strain the Texas Workforce Commission’s resources and many unemployed Texans are waiting weeks to get questions answered.

The article said:

“Paid unemployment claims in Texas have more than doubled since 2008, and commission officials say the surge has led to an “unprecedented volume” of people contacting the agency.

As a result, some out-of-work Texans say they can’t get their questions answered or resolve issues with their unemployment insurance.”

The first surge in unemployed Texans attempting to contact the Texas Workforce Commission began in July when the Federal government issued the first extension of unemployment benefits. Since then the Commission hasn’t been able to move fast enough to find the necessary staff to relieve the pressure. Texas residents such as Marvin Chosky, who was interviewed for the article found that unless unemployed residents are extremely persistent, their calls and emails may go unanswered for weeks if at all.

“Chosky said the letter he received from the commission in April stated that his benefits were extended because of the stimulus package. However, days later, he got a letter saying his weekly benefits were “zero.” Unable to get an explanation by telephone or e-mail, he said, he applied for the extended benefits. He got his benefit check a short time later, but he wondered whether everyone was so fortunate. “I wonder how many other people got the same letter, thought they weren’t getting benefits and didn’t apply,” he said. “Especially if they couldn’t get through to anyone who could tell them”

It is highly recommended that unemployed workers file for unemployment benefits online at . It’s free, convenient (especially if you have internet access at home) and provides you with a record if for some reason your claim is “lost.”