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What does it take to Qualify for "UI" (Traditional Unemployment)

You must meet all of these requirements to be eligible for UI: 

  • You have “qualifying wages.” It’s complicated, but this generally means that you worked in your job for at certain length of time (at least parts of two months) and earned a certain amount of money (at least $2,800).  Self-employed people are generally not eligible.
  • If you quit your last job, you have “good cause” to do so. 
  • If you were laid off or fired from your last job, you didn’t do anything that would be considered “misconduct.” 
  • You are able to work, meaning you do not have disability that prevents you from working.  
  • You are available for work, meaning you could take a job if it was offered to you.  For instance, you may not be available for work if you don’t have anyone to care for your children while you work, you are going to school full-time, etc.
  • You can’t get paid to do your work from home. 

Important Note: You can get unemployment if your hours were cut. 

Information and Resources

For more information on UI, you can use the UI Handbook or DWS’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) handout.  The UI Handbook is also available in Spanish.