"Recruiters are turning people away and saying they can't represent people who've been unemployed longer than six months," Shapiro said. "The problem is the longer it goes beyond six months, the worse it gets."
Employment advisers like Shapiro say the longer you are out of work, the more likely prospective employers are to suspect that something is wrong with you.
"When you've got that kind of gap, it really looks bad on your resume," Shapiro said. "You have to fill it in with something in order to get back in the game."
She made these suggestions to fight back:
Plug the hole in the resume. Do volunteer work related to your profession. It can be unpaid -- just don't say so.
Don't start a job interview by bringing up your unemployment, hoping to explain it away.
Don't go negative and don't complain about the economy.
ABC News' Alan Farnham contributed to this story.