South Carolina 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 $4455 in the base period in South Carolina?
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: 803.737.2400; Employment Service, Columbia Area: 803.737.5627 (JOBS); Employment Service, Lexington Area: 803.359.6131; Columbia Unemployment Office: 803.737.5627
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 South Carolina?
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 South Carolina?
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:
South Carolina Unemployment Questions
What is a Base Period? The first four quarters of the last five completed calendar quarters establishes your base period. The effective date of your claim controls your base period—not the date you become unemployed. For instance, if your claim goes into effect during January, February, or March, then your base period is the first three quarters in the last year plus the last quarter of the previous year. Even if your claim takes effect March 31, the quarter’s last day, your base period consists of the first three quarters in last year plus the previous year’s last quarter.
What is the Waiting Period in SC? When determined eligible for benefits, you must wait one week. During this week (the waiting period)you must be completely or partially unemployed, and you must all legal eligibility requirements. You will not receive benefits during the one-week waiting period.
SC Unemployment Fraud Claims Warning Knowingly providing false information subjects you to legal action. Fines ranging from $20 to $100 and imprisonment up to 30 days that could be your fate. Each false statement or misrepresentation of the truth is considered a separate offense. As well, if the DEW finds you guilty of fraud, you’ll be ineligible to receive benefits for anywhere from 10 to 52 weeks. Always report all gross wages earned and keep accurate records. We check and compare all wages employers report to your benefits. We can collect overpayments from your tax refund through the SC Department of Revenue. We also add a $10 fee to collection efforts.
How does severance pay affect my benefits? Your severance pay doesn’t affect your ability to file an unemployment claim. Nor is severance pay deducted from your weekly unemployment benefits.
Can I earn money while receiving benefits? You can, but you must report all earnings. You may earn up to 1/4 your weekly benefit with no deduction in your unemployment check. You must report earnings during the week you work not when paid.
Do I have to pay taxes on unemployment benefits? Yes. Taxes are withheld at the 10 percent federal rate and 7 percent state rate. When you file a claim for unemployment, you can elect to withhold taxes. At year-end, you’ll receive your 1099-G tax statement as will the IRS. Be sure to give us your new address if you move. Note: The IRS created a new electronic tax center on its website, IRS.gov for people whose income has deceased and are struggling financially.
What is South Carolina's taxable wage base per person?
Effective January 1, 2011, the taxable wage base for South Carolina is $10,000. Wages earned by each employee in excess of $10,000 are not taxable. The taxable wage base increases to $12,000 in 2012 and $14,000 in 2015.
When are quarterly Contribution and Wage Reports due?
Beginning January 1, 2011 South Carolina will use a traditional base period or an alternate base period to determine if an individual monetarily qualifies for unemployment insurance benefits. Because of the addition of an alternate base period, employers are requested to file their quarterly contribution and wage reports within 15 days after the quarter ends. The shorter reporting time is expected to reduce additional contacts to the employer from SCDEW’s staff, reduce paperwork and clerical costs for the employer, and expedite the claims filing process. This is currently a request as it requires legislative approval. The legal filing date continues to be the last day of the month following the end of a quarter.
How Benefits are calculated?
To calculate your weekly benefits amount click here
The minimum benefits amount in South Carolina is $42.
The maximum benefits amount in South Carolina is $326
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