Eligibility Requirements

Like other types of insurance, the unemployment insurance program requires that you meet certain conditions before qualifying to receive payment. To qualify, you must meet both personal and monetary eligibility requirements. Unemployed military and federal workers will need to bring special documents with them when they apply for benefits.

Personal Eligibility

You must be unemployed through no fault of your own. You must have been laid off due to lack of work, voluntarily quit with good cause connected with the employment, or been discharged but not for misconduct.

You must be physically able to work full-time, ready to go to work, and be willing and able to accept both full and part-time work.

Monetary Eligibility

Most work performed in all states qualifies a worker for unemployment insurance benefits. Self-employment does not normally qualify for unemployment insurance, however, you should apply and let the Department of Labor local office determine if you qualify.

A monetary determination will show the wages paid to you by employers who have contributed to the unemployment insurance fund during your base period (the first four of the last five completed quarters before the beginning of your claim).

Benefits are figured by the amount of earnings during this 12 month base period. A weekly benefit amount is determined by the calendar quarter with the highest earnings.

Military and Federal Claims

Federal civilian employees and ex-military personnel do generally meet the monetary criteria to qualify for unemployment insurance.

Federal civilian employees should bring the SF8 and SF50 if issued at separation and may be asked to provide proof of earnings. Ex-military personnel will need a copy of their DD-214, member 4.

To obtain more information about eligibility requirements for unemployment insurance benefits, contact any local office. To find the local office nearest you, please consult the Department of Labor directory.


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