Unemployment Insurance

Phone: (208) 332-8942
Fax: (208) 639-3256

Listen in English

Escucha en Español

Ex-military Service Member Guide to Unemployment

Am I Eligible for Unemployment Insurance Benefits?

As an ex-service member, it is your right to file for unemployment insurance benefits after you are released from military services. You may establish a valid unemployment insurance claim based on your military service if you completed your first full term of service and your separation was under honorable conditions. Under certain situations, a valid unemployment insurance claim may be established even if you have not completed your first full term of service. Eligibility will depend upon the reason you were separated from military service.

When Can I File My Claim?

You may file your claim any time after your release from active duty. The sooner you file after your release date, the sooner your claim will be established. Your claim cannot be accepted if you file before your separation date.

Where Can I File?

As an ex-service member, you may file your claim in any of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands. Before making your choice, you should consider the following: (1) all states do not pay the same amount of benefits; (2) You must be physically in the state when you file your claim; (3) Once you file a claim with a state, your entire military wages are assigned to that state; (4) You may continue to claim benefits with that state even if you move to another state.

How Do I File?

You must file online at If you do not have Internet access, you can use a computer at any local Department of Labor office. You will need a Member 4 copy of your DD Form 214, driver’s license and Social Security information. You will need your bank account information if you choose to receive your payments via direct deposit. If you don’t have a copy of your DD Form 214, you can request a copy online at .You can fax your DD214 to (208) 334-6400, attention: Benefits.

How Much Am I Entitled?

The amount of benefits you may be entitled to is based upon your military rank at the time of your separation from service. Each state has its own formula for calculating the weekly and total benefit amounts, and they vary from state to state.

Are Payments Automatic?

Unemployment insurance benefit payments are not paid automatically. To receive these benefits, you must meet certain eligibility requirements. All states require that you are physically able and available to work for each week you claim benefits. The state you file against will tell you if there are additional requirements that you must meet.

Who Pays the Cost of My Benefits?

Your branch of service pays the entire cost of the unemployment insurance benefits paid to you. Nothing was withheld from your salary while in the service to pay for your benefits.

Do I Qualify for Benefits if I Retire from the Military Service?

If you are receiving or will be receiving a monthly retirement pension based on your military service and your unemployment claim is also based on your military service, the pension is prorated to a weekly amount and deducted from your weekly benefit amount. If your prorated weekly pension amount is equal to or more than your weekly benefit amount, you are not eligible for benefits.

Return to unemployment insurance FAQ


Adjusting Text Size

Use your web browser to control the text size of our website. See below for where to find these controls.

Google Chrome:


Internet Explorer 6:

Internet Explorer 7+:

Mozilla Firefox:

Mozilla Firefox 2:

See instructions for other web browsers.