Reaching California EDD Massively Sucks

This is the exact problem that I have been having all morning trying to get through to the California Employment Development Department:

Californians Battle Swamped State Phone Lines to Get Jobless Benefits

Yes, all morning. We’re talking over five hours of back-to-back phone calls. The EDD doesn’t even put you in a “hold” queue until a representative is available, you just get a recorded message essentially saying “there’s a lot of calls, sucks to be you, try back later!” and then… disconnection.


I haven’t received my extended benefits forms yet. The EDD website says to call if you haven’t received them within 10 days. It’s been over 2 weeks and I could really use the funds. I have tried various number combos posted online to get through, none of them are working… On one forum, they suggested calling the foreign language line – I just may try it, because nothing else is getting me to a representative.

Anyway, if anyone else out there is feeling like bashing your head against a wall over this, you are not alone.

Short post, maybe I’ll update later tonight… my therapist just called to inform me that I forgot my session this morning, so I frantically rescheduled and now I’m running over there. Yes, I know. Homeless with a shrink. Only in California ;) Maybe this evening, when things settle down, I’ll go into why although I’ve pared down a lot of stuff in my life due to this circumstance, I feel good mental health is more important than ever, and is worth continuing to pay for.


  1. beauty academy says:

    I recently applied for extended benefits. I also did not get any info within 10 days of applying. I did get approved and the check was sent 2 weeks after my last regular edd benefits check was paid to me.

  2. Hi there, beauty academy, thanks for commenting!It sucks, doesn’t it? I still haven’t gotten my info yet. :`(I’m still waiting on about two and a half months’ worth of extended benefit checks owed to me, from before I picked up my new job.~B~

  3. i just stumbled on your blog (i couldnt comment on your latest post). and god do i know what you’re going through. ive been unemployed for 8 months…they gave me a few weeks of checks before deciding i was “ineligible.” I had to file a new claim they said, and when I did i was denied for not working?! lol wtf. I just sent them a pay stub (from odd jobs here and there) and have yet to hear from them.

    I had to move out of my apartment and back in with my mom and my bf and my car is about a week away from being taken away. I wish i knew how to “work” the system, but honestly i just want to get what is owed to me and pay my bills.

  4. Dean Tarr says:

    Write to congressmen, senators, TV stations regarding this CA EDD shame. It is a complete embarassment and a joke for them not to respond to taxpayers. The state is bankrupt thanks to illegals, and the honest taxpayers do not even get a call back, a response anything from this state “agency.” The govt. is corrupt and inept plain and simple. However, they are very adept at increasing taxes, voting themselves pay raises, and taking your salary for more BS govt. “programs.”

    • Why just illegals get you facts straight there’s individuals out there on welfare who don’t deserve it and are receving benefits! Your just a races fuck !

  5. Laura Monks says:

    We are paying for soooo many illegals to have health care, (I know, I worked in a hospital before I was laid off) have their babies born in our hospitals and then taking care of all of the illegals when they go to school. THEY MUST COME FIRST!!!!!!!! Well, the state, as I see it, has to rob Peter to pay Paul—-simply put, they are using our edd funds to take care of the illegals. I don’t know about you, but I’m going to try to move out of this state!!!!!

  6. I have been trying to get unemployment spent an hour trying to reach someone. to find about my checks. I have 2 weeks left on my claim for California. I live in Oregon now. I have to wait until JULY 23 to get a phone interview Then they will send my checks. Hell I go back to work August 17th wHAT A JOKE> at least I can file here in Oregon which let me tell you is SOOO much easier. You can do it all online and YES you can actually reach a person. You dont even have to have an interview. When I told the lady about having to wait for an interview from California she was perplexed. She has never heard of such thing and the fact that People were not getting their unemployment in a timely matter is unacceptable!!!! Best thing I ever did was leave CALIFORNIA.

  7. ARNOLD took CALI down further in the hole it was already in. He should of stuck to movies. He has done NOTHING for CALI.. Well unless you are of upper income.

  8. EDD SUCKS is putting it mildly. I have been unemployed for 4 months and they owe me for THREE MONTHS. I have 3 teenagers and a husband to feed and house. My interview is scheduled for 8-22-09. After being on the phone calling back 40 times, I finally got through to someone who says their only job is to file new claims. All they can do is give you a reference number. What the blank does a reference number do when you have bills to pay? I don’t think the store will let you buy food with it. I sent them an email and I just received a response – letting me know the date of my interview. It informs me that the interviewer has 10 days from the interview date to determine eligibility and then it could be another 2 weeks from that. There are warning signs posted at the local EDD office not to harm employees. I thought it was rather funny when I first saw the signs, but now I really see the need for them. I think everyone needs to bombard the news media with info and Arnold’s office. (You need to send it by mail. I sent an email and his staff responded saying that it needed to be sent by mail.) I don’t think they realize how bad it really is. They are fabricating excuses to delay or not make payments at all. What restitution are they offering? I am sure they are not going to pay interest and late charges on items that can’t be paid while they arrive at their determination.

  9. EDD Nightmare says:

    EDD is a total nightmare. If you are receiving benefits they will make stuff up to cancel your claim. Since when was I ever self-employed?! Then they will suspend your checks until the phone interview, which is always a month away. so I have to endure a month of no checks. Their interview tactics are criminal. They will say you marked your claim form differently. Then after the claim is denied you have to go to appeals and show your copy of the claim form. I sent several letters to congressman but they don’t seem to care

  10. EDD Nightmare says:

    This treatment of Americans has got to stop. I have family members who died in wars for this country. The only way to make a difference is to let them know! Write the Governor and Congressman and tell them your EDD nightmare experiences! We pay 30% of our income in Federal and State taxes!

    State Representatives


    Arnold “Governator” Schwarzenegger

  11. Izel Melen says:

    Call 1-800-300-5616 There will be 2 different Messages that answer one says “Thank you for calling EDD” with a high pitched voice, dont bother just hang up. The other says “Welcome to EDD” this is the one you want, keep calling til you get this greeting then dial in 12117 and you will get an Agent to speak to you sometimes you have to rty more then once but you will get through. 2nd piece of advice If one Agent is unwilling to help you, “CALL BACK” and dont let them off the line unless they resolve your issue. If they say their gonna cut you a check call this number everyday 1-866-333-4606 and dont wait more then 3 days. If they dont call them back and make sure they take care of you. Always be POLITE and dont let them hear you sweat. Goodluck :)

  12. Thank you, Izel Melen! I will try this Monday.

    EDD stopped paying me benefits after the 8/8/09 payment. They did not terminate benefits or question my eligibility, just stopped.
    I emailed them and they sent me a new claim form. I filled it out that day and sent it to them that day 9/18/09. Nothing.
    Now they claim that this is a late claim are questioning my eligibility and are sending me a notice of a phone interview!
    They owe me for ELEVEN weeks!
    I sent a letter to the governor, senators and white house…
    the media is next.
    Good luck out there!

  13. singlemomlaidoff says:

    EDD stopped, said they had a “glitch in the system” so I wasnt automatically enrolled in my extension. Then they started sending me back checks, but because of the glitch I was weeks behind. THEN they stopped sending checks. I called, they said it was late- No way was it late- , so resent me a form and more back forms, I filled out, sent next day, then instead of a check I get a letter stating I have a phone interview for the end of November. Last check was dated for September 17th. Does anyone know if they will send a lump sum of what they owe me? Or will the checks just trickle in. I am behind in everything, and have NO MONEY.

    • Hi Singlemom,

      When they finally sent me all my backed up checks, they sent them all at once, but in separate envelopes — so one day, 5 or 6 envelopes just appeared in my P.O. Box. So when they finally send you what they owe you, it should be the same way. Good luck! It took several months until they got around to it in my case.

      Will keep you in my thoughts,


  14. AND GUESS WHAT? THIS IS THE SAME SYSTEM U.S. BANKS HAVE IN PLACE TO RIP OFF THEIR CUSTOMERS! They hold your money and invest it short term to make money for themselves, but instead of you being considered the lender, you’re being charged for it! On top of it, they also add fees, and find excuses to hold your money even longer! In other countries, bank do not take 10 days, or even 3 days, to clear a check. It takes 1 phone call and a few minutes! THIS IS THE BIGGEST SCAM IN THE COUNTRY BUT BECAUSE AMERICANS DON’T BANK ANYWHERE ELSE, THEY HAVE NO IDEA THIS ISN’T THE WAY IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE!


  16. By the way, I’m not even on unemployment and have never dealt with the EDD personally. Yet, I’ve been touched by this too because a lot of my friends’ lives are drastically altered by it and its borderline illegal tactics. A lot of people are suffering and I just think – as a finance specialist – that there are better ways at the EDD’s disposal to resolve the issues it is faced with without having to resort to make people suffer. It’s a matter of thinking outside the box and of intelligence, 2 things that seem to evade them.

  17. The 800 number that EDD gives you to call is a joke. You can never get through. Here are direct numbers to the EDD call centers:

    Los Angeles Call Center
    (323) 993-4705

    Oakland Call Center
    (510) 622-1286

    Orange County Call Center (Buena Park)
    (714) 279-7232

    Riverside Call Center
    (951) 782-3211

    Sacramento Call Center
    (916) 574-1711

  18. sappertom says:

    Thank You, Sandy! The # to Sac did not work, the L.A. # rang three times and A PERSON picked up. took care of my prob. lined out my claim & checks on the way. I’ve been calling 800-300-5616 for 2 1/2 DAYS! Redial 8:00 – close of buss. Est. 4500 calls, only recordings! Try the L.A. call cntr. @323-993-4705 good luck. p.s. HANG the BASTARDS!!!

  19. starjulia says:

    I had a phone interview today and nobody called me. I tried and triel to get through on the 1-800 number with no luck. I tried the LA call center and the girl who answered said that she couldn’t access my claim but she would transfer me to the sacrament call center, I am still on hold but at least I am in line and not getting told the same old “too many callers are waiting, please try again”

  20. Hi everyone, I have had my share of problems with the EDD this year. I have been reading other peoples stories and it does feel good to know that I am not the only one. After reading some stories on another blog I decided to start a website for people to anonymously share their stories. If you would like to go on a rant or if you want to share some advice, check it out.
    Good luck everyone!!

  21. I just got off the phone intereview, and the lady was asking all the questions to not give me benefits. This is really unbelieavable. Everyone complaining on this post though including my self needs to really sit down and take a hard look at how they live there own life, and if they live with with integrity and honesty then they have all the right to be upset if not, then understand that you created this word, now you have to live in it.

  22. Hello,

    I am witing you to thank you! Due to congess pulling a fast one on a lot of unemployed workers I am now dead broke and will be on the street any day. What kind of audcity is that to just send a letter out.

    I used to make close to 200K per year when I moved here 3 years ago. What i have seen, this if a fabuluos place to live. However I am unemplyed over 2 years this month.

    I feel like a failure. But I feel everyone in our government is letting us down. I aplogize if this sounds scathing. How would you feel to learn out of the blue “Hey you are homeless!”

    If congress doesnt act immediately upon retun I can to move in LOL. Its time to get our protities back on track and stop worrying about the rest of the world. My country is letting me down I am hurt. I will be one of those smelly lunatics with no shoes and no shave. What a mess. On top of that California cant even keep control so much inaction and when something does happen its bad.

    You can try to return this email if you ever see it. However I dont have the money to pay for it anymore.

    Thanks again! Remind everyone to sleep well at night as you know it was all up to our elected officials. It was a huge smack in the face.

    Oh and by the way My electricity should have been off a week ago. I guess I am getting lucky at the moment.

  23. I had a one, Mildred Bruns, as the EDD AJ, on an EDD claim in Stockton, in Nov 2011. The employer, Human Services Projects, Inc. dba Teen Triumph, a large group home (36 beds) and a non public school.

    HSP fired me for discussing wages & work conditions on an invitation from HSP; I then wrote two letters to the board and stated I would file a complaint with the DSS and the labor commission-that labor issue unearthed that HSP had never paid double time in the past 18-years-40 employee’s received back pay via the IWC for the past three years.

    HSP lost the intiail EDD claim and appealed. At the hearing which I attended via submitted documents; HSP had a three time felon- a false witness- that stated that she witnessed my conduct—I had never met this felon prior and her mom is a longterm board member.

    Mildred Bruns, an easlity duped idiot goes along with the false witness who lays out misconduct issues that never occurred.

    In my appeal, I outlined the felons misdeeds as a SJ county deputy guardian for the elderly and that HSP knowingly had misrepresent the facts uner oath.

    Mildred Bruns, not one to conduct due diligence not only failed to cite my appeal facts but concealed those docs in upholding her finding of gross misconduct.

  24. bnlschkin says:

    It took a while to get my checks but I found a part time job and I reported it. I got penalized for reporting my 8 hour a week job that I owe edd $190 plus penalty. Report it to the Governor! this is Government politics bullshit at its best.

  25. Anonymous says:

    I work for EDD, and it’s a clusterfuck everywhere. Inept and incompetent management who hire and promote inept and incompetent ass kissers. The entire department is a mess, not just the Unemployment Division. Write your legislators!

  26. BasherHead says:

    2012, and still the same: the California EDD is fucking horrible. I got a tiny sliver of work, and it was slightly more than my meager benefits. I filled in the little part of the form to report my earnings and — they discontinue my claim, because now I am “working”. Fucking bastards.

  27. headbasher says:

    Well filed a claim jan 2nd… I worked at for about 3 years and they could verify that I existed. Verified my ssn and still nothing. Here it is feb 19th a month and a half later it is in limbo.

    My complaint is I’ve made oconstantlyver 500 calls day in day out over the past month and a half no 1 has answered either of their lines I have not spoken to the single soul in regards to this claim and right now I think it’s non existent. all I have to say is I’m about ready to drop out of this economy and ride my scooter not spend gas money to get a minimum wage job to slowly pay off my 10,000 dollars worth of debt.

    makes you wonder why California supposedly the best place to live wow the roads are crappy we spend about 2 * more than anywhere else in the country to drive gas prices insurance prices as well as car payment prices and yet the standard of living is not’s just not worth it sometimes.

    I’m no dummy. I have a bachelor’s a number of certificates and associates and halfway through my masters. I’m privileged to have not been in debt and work my way through college. All the while I work 3 jobs At a time to make ends meet. now I can even get 1 job ill pay any of my bills.

    • Since you have an undergrad degree, you should be able to convey your thoughts in writing. The comment you posted makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.

  28. you think the phone line is bad. I re-payed an overpayment and even after I repaid it the EDD kept charging me interest and said I had to pay the interest. It is illegal to charge interest on interest. Can you imagine paying off a debt and then never being let off the hook because they charge you interest at payoff? the EDD is a criminal organization. They are good at screwing people over. they outsource their customer service all you get is shoddy service.

  29. I have been trying to contact EDD for THREE WEEKS. I also sent a complaint letter to EDD and to Marty Morgenstern. I have yet to receive a response.

    In my case. After receiving only two weeks of unemployment benefits, it appears that EDD has simply stopped paying for benefits. They also have not provided me with any way to file continued claim forms. The paper continued claim form is also not available for download anywhere.

    It appears that CA EDD has completely reneged on its legal mandate to provide unemployment benefits. I’m waiting to hear back from my attorney now to see what the next steps are.

  30. all the comments on this and other sites paint a disturbing picture of the state of EDD and unemployment insurance for honest, displaced workers, which unfortunately matches my own experience in 6 months dealing with the EDD. First a long delay in getting the inital award, following by several delays due to questions they had about the written claim forms I filed. It seems that being honest about your job search and money earning endeavors hurts you more often than not when dealing with the EDD. I am currently 2 1/2 months behind on payments (last payment was for period ending 5/18/13) and awaiting a written appointment for yet another phone interview. Was informed via email that I should wait for the letter in the mail to find out when my appt will be. That was 6 days ago, still no letter. And this was after sending in the last claim form 3 weeks ago.

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