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Missouri Unemployment Eligibility

To be eligible for unemployment insurance (UI) benefit payments in Missouri, you must meet certain requirements.

Non Monetary Eligibility

  • You lost your job recently through no fault of your own
  • You must be available, able and willing to work.  This means you have no illness, injury, or personal circumstances that would keep you from working
  • You are unable to work due to a natural disaster
  • You have quit your job for good cause directly attributable to the employer
  • Termination from job for misconduct
  • You must report all wages earned each week, even if you won’t be paid until later. This includes tips, commissions, bonuses, show-up time, military reserve pay, board, and lodging
  • Refusing an offer of work may result in denial of UI benefits

Monetary Eligibility

  • Make at least $2,250—at least $1,500 during one of the calendar quarters, and at least $750 during the remainder of the base period—from an insured employer during your base period
  • AND your total base period wages must be at least 1.5 times your highest quarter wages.
  • OR you must make at least $19,500 during two of the four base period quarters.

Eligible claimants may receive up to 20 weeks of unemployment insurance benefits through the state.

Eligibility Questions

Can I draw unemployment if I am fired?

To qualify for unemployment benefits as a terminated employee, you must be able to prove that your employer terminated you illegally.

You cannot receive unemployment benefits if your separation from employment happened because of a termination for misconduct. Missouri court rulings have defined misconduct as “wanton or willful” policy or procedural violations. A blatant refusal to follow reasonable work directives is an example of misconduct. Occasional absenteeism, or extended absenteeism because of a legitimate reason such as an illness or family emergency, usually is not misconduct. Isolated poor performances or honest mistakes are not instances of misconduct.

Your employer cannot terminate you for filing a wage complaint, filing a complaint based on discriminatory conduct or for exercising any other of your legally protected rights. If your employer terminated you because of your age, race, national origin, religion, gender or disability, then you will be eligible for unemployment benefits, but you may be required to prove your employer terminated you for those reasons.

If the state approves your claim, you will receive weekly benefits for up to 26 weeks, and you may qualify for additional federal benefits if you are still not working after exhausting your state benefits. You will be required to submit a weekly certification that you are looking for a job and able to work.

I have quit my job. Am I eligible for unemployment benefits?

Unemployment benefits in Missouri are for employees whose separation from employment is because of a lack of work or another reason they cannot control.

If you quit your job, you usually will not be entitled for unemployment benefits. The state makes an exception if you have “good cause directly attributable to the employer.” Leaving for personal reasons, or because you are bored or dissatisfied with your job, for example, generally will not allow you to receive unemployment benefits. On the other hand, mistreatment by your employer, such as verbal abuse or harassment, usually is good cause.

Can I obtain unemployment benefits after getting laid-off?

Normally, in Missouri you have to lose your job through no fault of your own in order to collect unemployment. When you get laid-off, it is not your fault.

In almost all cases, this means that if you get laid-off, you are eligible to receive unemployment benefits.

Getting laid-off doesn’t mean that you were fired or you did something wrong. It simply implies that the company in which you worked did not have enough work for you to do, and could no longer afford to pay you to do your job.

If you get laid-off from your job, you should immediately apply for unemployment benefits.

I was on EUC08 and was told I qualify for a new claim. The weekly benefit amount is lower than my EUC08. Can I stay on the EUC08?

In most conditions, the regular Missouri unemployment claim must run out of money before EUC08 payments can be made. However, a claimant can carry on collecting EUC08 payments instead of regular UI payments if the WBA on the regular claim is at least 25 percent less than the WBA on the EUC08 claim. You can go back to your regular claim if you either draw out all the money on your EUC08 claim or the EUC08 programs ends on Dec. 28, 2013, providing the regular claim is still in effect.

More Questions?? —-> Read Eligibility Q & A Section

Want to know about how much you will receive?? —–>Calculate your benefits here

  1. I was placed on administrative leave with my job. After a HR review, I was notified that recommendations were going to be made for my termination of Inappropriate conduct or I could resign instead. So would this constitute a situation of forced resignation? Would I qualify for unemployment?

    • Hi, Ralph – situations like these are decided on a case-by-case basis, so your best option is to connect with someone in the Missouri unemployment office. Keep in mind that the chief stipulation for unemployment is that you lose your job through no fault of your own. In a situation like this, if your former employer reports misconduct as the reason for termination, it will be difficult for you to be approved. The same is true if you resign, unless you can show that the work environment was so harmful to your physical or mental health that you had no choice but to resign.

  2. If I quit my job voluntarily because I am being asked to do duties outside of the job description I was hired for, can I collect unemployment?

    • Hi, Wilson – under Missouri labor law: Good cause”, for the purposes of this subdivision, shall include only that cause which would compel a reasonable employee to cease working or which would require separation from work due to illness or disability. Since your particular situation doesn’t sound like it includes illness or disability, good cause may be difficult to prove. If you think you have a case, though, it would be a good idea to connect with a qualified unemployment lawyer who can help you.

  3. I did not work a weekend shift due to pneumonia, then I had a Saturday shift covered and approved by boss, then I had to leave mid shift on a Friday due to a pelvic organ prolapse, which I had no idea what was happening to my body at the time it occurred). Last week I show up to work on Friday, was informed they’ve hired another person to work my 17 hrs on Fridays & saturdays. Another employee said they assumed I didn’t want to work them.????

  4. I was just denied unemployment because it said my medical reason is personal. I had a seizure on the way home from work and totaled my car. I live about 15 to 20 mins away from where I work, and the company I work for travels. My doctor said I was able to go to work but I can’t drive for six months from my last seizure (which I haven’t had much luck in that area). The company I work for has been super good to me, and even told me that if I filed for unemployment they wouldn’t fight it. I appealed the decision and basically wrote that “You denied me because you said it was personal, but not being able to drive to a job that is 20 mins away from where I live (and without a car) is not personal it’s fact. Also paying for a ride to and from work would cost me over $200 a WEEK, which is not feasible.” It’s my first time ever filing in my life so this is all new to me, I’m frustrated. I can work and I’m trying to find a work from home job, and I told her that on the phone. I just think that sometimes the system is a little outdated. I’m now sure it will be months before it kicks in if I win the appeal whenever that will be. Doesn’t look good for me right now, and basically don’t know what else I can do.

    • Dear Gary,

      You were right to appeal, as your ability to work (anywhere) is constricted by not being able to drive. Unforunately, in my experience the gov’t does not care whether you can get to and from work. However, I would begin the process of filing for SSI/SSDI, which you can do online. You can get an attorney to help with that and they only charge you (20% of your backpay) if they win disability for you. Disability insurance is an entitlement program for anyone with a work history. If you are having seizures not well controlled by meds you may qualify.

      Obviously, you will continue to appeal if that is an option. Consider, too, finding housing assistance and food stamps as every little bit helps.

      Best,

      Jean

  5. If I resign from my job due to vision problems and chronic knee pain can I still apply for unemployment?

    • Dear Millicent Walker,

      Yes, you can apply but it will be up the Unemployment Office to decide if that is “good cause.” It would be helpful to have your employer write down that you cannot do the job sufficiently because of vision and knee pain.

      In the meantime, you may want to apply for SSI and/or SSDI. If you are over 50, you have a good chance of qualifying if your impairment(s) mean you can’t do your usual work.

      Best,

      Jean

  6. I was in a terrible motorcycle accident broke my hip and leg,, that was in no way my fault. I was the passenger on the bike and we got hit by another driver being negligent. I contacted my place of employment informing them I couldn’t work for 3-6mths minimum depending on healing. I was put on a 12 wk LOA and was told it was about to expire and if I didn’t return to work Jan 10 they were terminating my employment. I could not return to work via my Dr as I told them in Nov&Dec. I was denied unemployment bcuz they said I “voluntarily resigned” how is that a voluntarily resignation? I didn’t want to lose my job but had no choice as they wouldn’t accommodate light duty for me. Can I appeal that?

    • Unfortunately, the system does not consider personal reasons for unemployment. Benefits are provided to claimants who’re available for work.

      Hope you get well soon.

      • So for the last 4 days I haven’t been going to work because as my boss would say has no work for me. So everyone else gets to work including the new guys he just hired. Can I claim unemployment while waiting to get back to work?

        • Josh,

          You should be able to claim UI benefits for loss of hours (temp. off from work). Please consider applying.

  7. I was fired from an employer after 6 months with no warnings, write ups, or disciplinary actions. I raised $50,000 in donations and asked that the money be used for a position to help me continue my work. I was handed a box, told I was terminated immediately and was handed a check for 1-21-22 pay range to 1-31-22 with benefits terminating at/on 1-31-22. When asked why I was terminated, I was told “you’ll have to ask HR.” Called hr in front of my boss-was told “get off the phone!” I was packing my car and had to call HR from outside and was told “you’re not a good fit.” I asked for an elaboration and I was told, “it means you’ll fit better somewhere else.” I have had no poor performance reviews, I had emails validating that I was performing well with nothing to show or evidence poor placement or fit. Can I file for wrongful termination? This is a church/non profit 503b and they tell us you cannot collect unemployment benefits either. I feel like a dog that has been dropped off in a field and left. Feelings don’t count in business but it was a traumatic event with threats to call the police if I didn’t pack my car up faster.

    Can you provide any guidance, please?

    • This looks like a termination without proper reasoning. You can be eligible under such circumstances. Make sure to keep supporting docs/facts handy in case your employer raises a dispute after you apply.

  8. I was fired from my job due to a sexual harassment claim, even though I didn’t do anything on my end, but my job believed otherwise without hearing from any other witnesses – can I still get unemployment, as after 35 years in the work place, this is the FIRST time I’ve ever been accused of something that I didn’t do.

    • Duane,

      This is a tricky situation. If you’re able to prove it you were not involved in case of a dispute, you will be eligible to claim.

  9. My employer terminated me and told me I can draw my unemployment. Now that I have filed my former employer is contesting it stating I was terminated for mis conduct. Can I still receive benefits

    • Neveah,

      That is strange! If you were denied wrongfully, you can file an “appeal”. Make sure to keep all supporting documents handy.

  10. My employer fired me because he said he caught me on camera hiding out and not trying to work when that’s not true at all. He also implied because I was sick. I had a fever for two days but he let me go. Is it possible for me to get benefits?

    • Christopher,

      You can be eligible to claim as long as you can prove otherwise (with supporting docs) in case of a dispute.

  11. If I give two-weeks notice, and they fire me before the effective date of my resignation, do I qualify for unemployment?

    • My husband lives 2 hrs away from his job which he had worked at for 3+ years for a “distance program”. Their policy as of last year was 10 call in days per year, which has been restricted to 8 days per year this past month. He has called in throughout the year due to illness and snowy weather, totaling 5 call in days according to his count. Weather pending, the manager stated she “did not want to lose him as staff” but that call ins “continue to be an issue,” and that he must come in regardless of weather. The implication was that his job was on the line. My question is, if they fire him if he needs to call in when it is unsafe to drive that distance to work, would he be eligible for unemployment, and if so what documentation would we need to provide?

      • Hi, a person is eligible for UI when they become unemployed through no fault of their own. However, they might not be eligible when the termination is due to cause or misconduct. Note that cause for termination doesn’t apply to any cause. It instead applies to any negative actions by the employee. The state unemployment agencies take the final call, and the eligibility criteria may vary for each.
        We advise you to check information pertaining to the documentation on our website’s state pages.

    • Harriet,

      It depends on the ‘reason’ for job separation. If it’s involuntary (not related to performance/behavior etc), you can be eligible to claim UI benefits.

  12. I was discharged from a call center for not meeting metrics. There was no misconduct involved, never took a sick day. Am I eligible for unemployment? (Metrics are are statistical analysis of such things as length of call, whether customer called back in within 48 hours, etc.). The employee has limited to no control over the metrics performance.

  13. II have carpel tunnel and my job is working repetitive motions which is causing severe pain and keep having other wrist injuries, i am having mental health issues and my work environment is full of toxic people, im loosing childcare for my son whom is 5 months old. The waiting list is ridiculous for daycares, and my job is doing shift realignment which i cant work nights. Can i receive unemployment due to everything in my life going on if i quit?

    • Carissa,

      If you can prove it was not your fault if there’s a dispute, you can be eligible to claim.

  14. I intend to quit my job, citing three reasons: unequal treatment during the COVID crisis regarding payable hours and system down time due to company equipment – the unequal filing of payable hours has led to my inability to qualify for FMLA, which I usually relied upon as well as causing me to have to draw on my retirement (which I was able to do, thanks to CARES). The second being a major change in performance metrics and expectations – one being centered around how much system down time we have – a factor heavily based on the equipment provided by the workplace. The final being my status as an ‘at risk’ employee was disclosed to a peer, among other ‘at risk’ employees who were put on a special watch.

    Do I have a leg to stand on for unemployment – especially if I have a job lined up (I would only need to draw for about a month)? I haven’t been able to find an answer and I’ve been scared to jump without confidence.

    • Wesley,

      UI benefits are only offered to claimants who lose employment due to no fault of theirs. Please check for further information on the Unemployment Office’s website.

  15. If you were on unemployment and get hired for a new place of employment, but after 10 days of work find out you physically cannot do the job can you still get unemployment from previous employer?

  16. I was recently informed I have to have surgery on both my feet ASAP for severe pain from bunions I have battled the last few years. I have a job where I walk 6-10 miles a day. I will not be able to perform my job for at least 3-4 months, and thereafter just depends on my healing process. No way to know. I won’t be able to walk for at least 6-8 weeks but otherwise would be considered able to work if I was sitting. Am I eligible to file for unemployment?

    • Emily,

      You may not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons.

  17. I got my work authorization on Feb-2020 and started working from May-2020 but after couple of months, got laid off from Job. Am I eligible for applying unemployment?

  18. I quit my job here in Missouri on March 6. Two employees brought firearms to work and threatened to use them on each other. Management did nothing. I emailed my assistant general manager and included this in the reasons for my resignation. He emailed me and he acknowledged what I said. I still have both emails. I’m awaiting a decision. Am I eligible?

    • Joshua,

      If you were asked to leave due to no fault of your own, please apply. Make sure to keep supporting documents handy in case of a dispute.

  19. Fired for misconduct from a job I’ve had for 5 years !! Misconduct was days late or absent !! But the days listed were the ones I got approved for my father’s funeral and used my bereavement pay and vacation !!! Manager told me not to worry everything was taken care of !!! Got fired 3 weeks later ,,, strange I’d say ????

    • Jessie,

      If you think that was not justified, please consider applying for UI benefits until you find employment. In case of a dispute from your employer, please present supporting documents.

  20. I havent been fired yet but my employer tends to cut you off the schedule when he wants a person to quit. He cut my hours back due to a customer complaint from hear say of another co worker at another job she has. A single mother cant support a child on one day a work each week. Can i get unemployment due to lack of hours over hear say? He even told me he wasn’t told directly by the customer. But yet cut back hours.

  21. My job is changing my shift and I cannot work the new hours. They offered me 6 weeks severance, but said I would need to sign an agreement to not apply for unemployment, to get it. What if I don’t find a job in 6 weeks, can I still get unemployment?

    • Cathy,

      I am not sure if that agreement is even legal. Please call the Unemployment Office for clarification and guidance in this regard.

  22. I was terminated duebto being out of work ‘too long’ because of postpartum issues. I consistantly kept my employer informed of my condition. Will I be eligible since I was out due to postpartum but was not FMLA protected?

  23. I was out sick on a Friday I was texted by my office manager asking me to let one of the other girls in the office what part of my job needed to be completed I was also out that Monday. I went to the doctor and was told I had bronchitis and could not go back to work until Tuesday. I went in Tuesday still not feeling good and found out that none of my job was completed. The office manager told one of the other girls in the office to tell me if my work was not completed by Friday then i would have to stay until it was all completed. The office manger also told one of my coworkers that if her job was not completely finished that she could not take off September 18 to have her surgery. When I was out sick the office manager went through all my personal belongs that I had and completely re-arranged my desk. The language that is used in the office is not appropriate for an office. The F word is used way too much. I had asked if I could take one week of my vacation and was told no. Which one of my co-workers got to take a week vacation. We was asked to cross train on each other jobs and I have no problem with that but when you are cross training and still expected to complete your daily task it’s a little much to ask a person to do. So Tuesday after I was told I could not leave on Friday until my job was completely caught up I went in to the office manager and asked to be paid by two weeks vacation and that I could no longer handle the pressure that was being put on me. It was starting to effect my health. And that I would be leaving. Is this going to stop me from drawing unemployment.

    • If you resign voluntarily, you may not qualify.

      However, you can be eligible to claim if you’re able to prove the hostile working conditions through paperwork. Please call the Unemployment Office for further details.

  24. I HAVE TO HAVE SURGERY ON MY SHOULDER , THE DOCTOR SAID THAT I WILL BE UNABLE TO WORK FOR SIX WEEKS . CAN I FILE FOR UNEMPLOMENT BINIFITS FOR THOSE WEEKS. I’VE BEEN WITH THE COMPANY FOR OVER 20YRS.

  25. I have just been told that my job has been phased out and will be spread out between several people. I would be eligible to start taking a small amount of retirement since I have been on my job 11 years and would get some severance pay. My question is would I be eligible for unemployment also?

  26. Im working in this company for 4 months. I got fired for clocking out late everyday without getting my daily tasks done. Can I apply unemployment for this reason?

    • My step dad was being inappropriate with my fiance, he also happened to work with me and was up one more step from me. The weekend before I was fired I had told him I knew how he was acting towards her and it needed to stop and that we wouldn’t be attending anything for the family with him. Went into work on Monday he told me I could turn around and that I was fired for being tardy. Never has it been an issue it’s never been brought up I work 6 days a week there for over 2 years. Can I still collect?

    • To be eligible to claim UI benefits, the claimant is required to have sufficient employment and earnings in the last 4-5 calendar quarters.

      • My Spouse has only been able to take 1 day off since September 27, 2020 – as in, he has worked 36 consecutive days, at an average of 10-11 hours per day (salaried). He was previously scheduled for a weekend off, and was told the night before that he would have to be there anyway. He is becoming physically and mentally exhausted, and doesn’t know how much more he can do. Due to his extensive hours, he also cannot interview for other positions. Would he be able to quit with cause and be eligible for unemployment?

        • Carissa,

          This is a tricky situation. Please ask your spouse to get in touch with the Unemployment Office to ascertain eligibility.

  27. I recently went back to work after surgery. I am only allowed to work 4 hrs a day due to limitations from doctor. My job is only working me 2hrs a day, the minimum according to poor union contract. So I am only work about 12 hours a week and on a normal week I would work 40 to 60 hours. Can I claim unemployment for the hours I’m missing out on due to my work not scheduling me and doctors note?

    • Kala,

      Unfortunately, personal reasons such as health issues are not considered. UI benefits are only extended to those who’re able and available for work.

  28. I am going on unpaid maternity leave. Will I be able to file for unemployment under the Monetary Eligibility?

    • Unemployment Insurance is only extended to those who’re able and available for work. Unfortunately, personal reasons are not considered.

      Please call the Unemployment Insurance agency in your state for further information.

  29. my job is shutting down 2nd shift and they want everyone to go to first shift. but I can not work first shift will I be able to collect unemployment for this (Missouri)

    • You may not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons.

      Please inquire further with the Unemployment Office in your state by calling them.

    • Yes, it will have a bearing since it affects your ability to look out for employment.

      You may call the Claims Center to ascertain the exact nature of the impact.

  30. I work for non-profit and they state that I can not get unemployment benifits. Work there for over 30 years and they are changing my job discription and giving me to end of month to work. Can I collect benifits if they don’t pay into it? Also can I collect if I am receiving social security benifits. I feel this is an age discrimination but can’t prove it. I am over 75. Thank you

    • Well, if your employer does not pay into the system, you will not qualify.

      Please inquire further with the Unemployment Office in your state. You can call to confirm.

  31. Hi,
    I being harassed by other employees and my manager does nothing about it. This has happened more than 2-3 already and last night they pushed me over the edge and I felt trapped with no help, so I punched out and quit. Now, I want to seek unemployment. Will I qualify?

    • If you were fired indiscriminately, please consider applying for unemployment.

      In case of a dispute during claims processing, you can appeal.

    • Some states do consider this as a valid reason and allow claimants to apply.

      Please call the claims center/customer service of the labor dept. in your state for further information.

  32. I was given the option of resigning and receiving 30 days pay or being terminated. I have a handicapped husband so really could not refuse. The 30 days pay was up 1/22. I have now applied for UI benefits as I’ve not yet located another position. Will I qualify to receive these benefits under these circumstances?

  33. I have been employed with the same company for the past 6 months. Do I qualify for unemployment for when they shut down during the holidays? The week of Dec. 18-Dec. 24th? I will be back to work on Dec. 28th.

  34. I have been working for a temp service for 3 years. This week I went permanent, but do not have holiday benefits. Do I qualify for unemployment for the time they shut down during the holidays? They are shut for Thanksgiving (Thursday and Friday) and Christmas (December 24th to January 4th). I live in Missouri.

  35. I have worked for a company for 6 years and recently got married and moved approx. 100 miles from my job. My husband is military so I had no choice but to live near base. My employer has just mandated overtime and I have two kids at home. Would I be able to collect unemployment if I quit so I can look for a job closer to home?

    • There are exclusive benefits for military men and their spouses.

      Please check with the unemployment office in the state where you last worked.

  36. I work for a company that hired me as an independent contractor. I pay my quarterly taxes and have for some time. I am losing that position due to loss of work. Am I eligible for unemployment?

    • Some types of contractual positions do not qualify since employers do not generally pay taxes into the system towards UI fund.

      Please check with your employer and apply accordingly.

  37. I quit one job to take another. I was told that we would be getting a “gain share” as part of the compensation package. The new employer is now saying that there will not be a “gain share.” This job is now costing me more money than it’s worth. Can I collect unemployment if I quit this job to find something else?

    • You will not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons.

      If there was a breach of trust or employment contract, you can seek a legal remedy.

  38. I have 2 part-time jobs and one of them I will be laid off at due to my position being eliminated as of June 1st. I will still have my other job though. Does this qualify me to recieve unemployment even though I will still be working at my other Part-time job?

    • Each state has its own rules surrounding part time jobs.

      Please inquire further with the labor dept in your state before applying.

  39. I have worked for 36 years at a hosptial in kansas city Mo. but live in kansas. I have been told my job will be eliminated on September 1st. I have been looking for work but have not been able to find anything. When my position is eliminated can I collect Mo unemployment?

    • Lera,

      From the information you’ve supplied, it looks like you should be eligible to apply.

      Please consider applying after you’ve been laid off.

  40. My husband is being transferred out of St. Louis to Arizona which means I will have to resign my full time position as well. Do I qualify for unemployment benefits under the ‘no fault’ condition, since it isn’t my fault I have to resign?

    • You may not qualify as you’re quitting the job for personal reasons.

      Please check with the labor dept in your state.

  41. I have been with the same company for almost 11.5 years. I have been attending school for about 4 of those years and management has always worked with my school schedule and allowed me to work during the day as I can and come in during the evening or on weekends to make up any lost hours that I wanted to get back. In October of last year, new management came in and they’ve decided that they will no longer work with my school schedule. I had no intentions of quitting my job and every intention of working until I graduated. I told my boss that I wasn’t going to quit, he’d have to terminate me. Is there any reason why I won’t be eligible for unemployment benefits until I can find a job willing to work with my school schedule?

  42. I have been working PRN for about a year and a half, however, I was typically working 25-30 hours a week. I was recently notified by the company that I will continue to be employed by them as PRN but that I may not receive any hours. I am actively looking for other employment but have not found anything else yet. Do I qualify for unemployment benefits until I find new employment or start getting hours again with my current company? I live in Missouri.

    • You state may have exclusive rules for PRN employment.

      Please call them to check if you qualify.

  43. My work changed the work profile for my job long story short they started requiring us to go to floor for production 1 day a week and I have doctors note stating that i can not go to floor have not been on floor for over 2 years due to health now they are saying that i cant do my job and i need to resign and they may have to let me go if i dont resign. So will i able to draw unemployment and is this legal?

    • Your employer cannot force you to work or carry out an activity that poses risk to your health.

      Your eligibility to draw UI is dependent on various factors that includes your fitness.

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