Montana Unemployment Benefits
Are you physically able to work?
Are you willing to actively look for a job?
Did your employer pay unemployment taxes ("Covered Employment")?
Did you earn at least $2363 in the base period in Montana?
Base period is the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters. If you are filing today, base period is Jan 2012 - Mar 2012 to Oct 2012 - Dec 2012
How did you lose your job?
Did you quit your last job due to unsafe working conditions, not being paid, discrimination and / or health and safety risks?
Were you fired for no fault of your own?
Were you laid off for no fault of your own?
Applying online is the easiest and fastest way to claim benefits. Check for more specific details such as timings and requirements to claim benefits in your state.
CALL: (406) 444-2545 Helena or (406) 247-1000 Billings to file an Unemployment Compensation Claim (8:00 am to 4:30 pm, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Wednesday hours are from 10:00 am to 4:30 pm.)
Visit UC Center:
You can’t seem to find assistance on call? No worries. Visit one of the UC center and let the specialist help you out. Please note that wait times can be longer but assistance is guaranteed.
you are not eligible
What is the Eligibility Criteria in Montana?
There are some basic rules for eligibility. Even if you meet some of these rules partially, you should still apply for unemployment because state offices make a reasonable attempt to process your claim, as long as you provide a good justification.
To learn more check unemployment eligibility article
A "base period" is four consecutive calendar quarters that fall within the 18 month period before establishing a new benefit year.Claim your benefits
How to File Your Initial Claim in Montana?
If You Are Not a United States Citizen
You must give verification that you were legally eligible to work in your state and that you are presently eligible to begin a new job.
How to File Your Weekly Claim?
After you file your application for unemployment benefits, you must start filing your weekly claims. You require filing each week, even though you are:
You can file your weekly claim:
File every week that you want to claim benefits and keep on filing until you go back to work, run out of benefits or stop seeking work. You should claim at least one week before we can make a decision on your eligibility.
How to Claim for an Extension?
If you are presently filing weekly claims for unemployment benefits; carry on filing your weekly claim if you are jobless or working reduced hours. You will be informed by mail of your eligibility for the added benefits.
In case you have been filing weekly claims and are still laid off or working reduced hours, you will have to file an application for these extra benefits online or by telephone. You will be alerted by mail of your eligibility for the additional benefits.
To be eligible for EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits you must:
To be eligible for EB benefits you must:
Montana Unemployment Questions
What if I change my address?
Report any change of address online at UI4U.mt.gov or contact the Claims Processing Center. This will prevent a delay in receiving payments or information. The Post Office will not forward any mail from the Unemployment Insurance Division. If the division cannot contact you, benefits will be stopped.
After I file my claim, when should I call the Claims Processing Center?
You should contact us to report.
Yes, information is verified by several different methods to insure only those who are entitled to benefits receive them. It is important to give complete and true information every time you provide information to the Unemployment Insurance Division. Separation information is verified with employers to determine eligibility for benefits. Verification is done in writing or by telephone.
Yes, if you notify the Claims Processing Center, in writing or by calling, within 10 days from the date you opened your initial claim.
Why can it take so long to get a decision?
The Claims Processing Center investigates each issue on your claim. When the issue involves a job separation, both you and the employer are given up to 8 days to provide any supporting information. When conflicting information is received, the process can take longer. These steps are important to arrive at the right decision and pay benefits correctly.
My employer thinks I should get benefits, why am I not eligible?
Employers do not determine eligibility. The Unemployment Insurance Division reviews information provided by both you and your employer to determine if your separation meets eligibility requirements based on Montana law and rule.
Why do I have to file for benefits every 2 weeks?
Montana pays benefits bi-weekly. This means you request payment 2 weeks at a time, just like submitting a timecard for a paycheck every 2 weeks. For each week you will be asked a series of questions. Your answers to the questions certify that you have met the eligibility requirements for each week.
If I made a mistake when filing my bi-weekly claim what do I do?
If you immediately realize you made an error, you can go back into your claim through UI4U.mt.gov or call the IVR and correct your information. If you have questions, call the Claims Processing Center.
Can I go to school and receive benefits?
Possibly, if your school attendance does not interfere with your ability to find and accept full-time work or you are in training approved by the Unemployment Insurance Division. If you did not report this when you filed/reopened your claim, you must call the Claims Processing Center to report the details of your school attendance.
Can I get more money after my benefits run out?
No, once you have been paid your maximum benefit amount(MBA) during a claim year, you must wait until that claim expires before opening a new Montana claim.
Do I need to register for work at the Workforce Service Center?
Yes, you must register for work at the Workforce Service Center unless you are considered job attached or union attached. Workforce Service staff can assist with testing, counseling, job training programs, and job seeking skills.
Can anyone obtain information about my claim or file for my benefits?
No, unless you have given written authority to allow another person to obtain information on your claim. You are the only one who will have access to your claim information and you are the only one who can file for your benefits. Allowing another person to have access to your PIN and file benefits for you is considered fraud and may have legal consequences.
How Benefits are calculated?
To calculate your weekly benefits amount click here
The minimum benefits amount in Montana is $123.
The maximum benefits amount in Montana is $431
A "base period" is four consecutive calendar quarters that fall within the 18 month period before establishing a new benefit year.
To learn more Unemployment benefits article