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 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.

  2. 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?

    1. Carissa,

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

  3. 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.

    1. 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.

  4. 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?

    1. Emily,

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

  5. 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?

  6. 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?

    1. 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.

  7. 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 ????

    1. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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?

    1. Cathy,

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

  10. 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?

  11. 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.

    1. 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.


  13. 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?

  14. 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?

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

      1. 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?

        1. Carissa,

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

    2. 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?

  15. 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?

    1. 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.

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

    1. 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.

  17. 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)

    1. 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.

    1. 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.

  18. 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

    1. 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.

  19. 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?

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

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

    1. 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.

  20. 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?

  21. 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.

  22. 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.

  23. 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?

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

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

  24. 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?

    1. 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.

  25. 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?

    1. 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.

  26. 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?

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

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

  27. 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?

    1. 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.

  28. 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?

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

      Please check with the labor dept in your state.

  29. 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?

  30. 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.

    1. You state may have exclusive rules for PRN employment.

      Please call them to check if you qualify.

  31. 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?

    1. 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.

  32. I have worked full time for my current company for 2.5 years. I was recently given the option of working only 20hrs a week or being laid off. The difference between my pay and what I would receive in unemployment is negligible. I asked that if the employer could not bring me back full time in 6 months that he lay me off so I don’t lose my full UI benefit. If he refuses to lay me off can I quit and still collect or have I gotten myself stuck?

  33. MO Corporation purchased KS Company I was employed for 2 years. New owners closed KS location, transferring all KS Employees to MO location for employment. After 8 months with MO Corporation, they offered my position to transfer to CA or TX Division as my position is ending at MO Division. Requested this offer in writing.
    1) Are they required by MO Law to provide in writing this offer?
    2) Upon receipt of Transfer in writing, how many days am I legally able to take to give answer of transfer?
    3) What are the legal # days to accept job transfer to begin? 30 days?
    4) Should I not accept this offer, & they end my position same day and they don’t have this portion included in the Transfer offer, how can I prove they let me go vs. them stating I quit when I have not?
    6) What are MO unemployment benefit qualifications to obtain while seeking new employment in current residence?
    Thank you for your time & assistance.

    1. Please note that this is a website providing expertise advice relating to unemployment insurance.

      You must contact the labor dept in MO to get specific answers.

  34. Hello, My son is a seasonal employee – can he collect unemployment benefits during his off season? If so, can he attend school during that period? Thank you!

    1. I don’t think seasonal employment is a qualifier.Please check with the labor dept in your state.

  35. I was recently terminated from my job and the best reason for it they could give me was they didn’t feel it would work out with me at the company. When I asked for my letter of termination I was told that they don’t do termination letters. Since i still requested one and told them I still needed a letter of termination I was still given the same answer. I still need that letter for when i have to apply for unemployment if I am not mistaken who else can I contact about having this company give the termination letter I have requested on multiple occasion since March 14th of this year?

    1. You can contact the labor dept in your state to see if they can help you address grievance regarding behavior of your last employer.

      They should be in a position to help.

  36. I am 50 years old and have been working since I was 16. I have a B.A. and Associates. I have been fired from 6 jobs, one in particular causing employment problems. Long story short… why haven’t I ever been able to receive unemployment benefits. I am a U.S. citizen and pay my taxes, what’s up?

    1. Kandee,

      I hope you’ve filed for UI benefits in your state.If you’ve and not heard from the labor dept, please follow up for update on status.

  37. Can it be considered harassment if an employer is constantly comparing wages on a sales floor during work? the manager was standing behind the three of us comparing one persons eleven dollar an hour sum to the other two of us whom are only making the sum of four an hour. This is extremely disheartening, and the work isn’t just a normal sales configuration- they consider the business “Customer Life-cycle Management”. I would be receiving call ONLY from extremely angry jilted customers. and for this I am a “poor salesperson”?… help

  38. I accidently uploaded photos from my IPhone to my hard drive computer at work by charging the phone. In no way did I intentionally download the images which were in a private file from my phone which contained some nudity. Is that considered an eligibility to qualify for unemployment?

  39. My husband works in a warehouse and has lots of Health issues diabetes, high blood pressure, and just this past Monday had prostrate surgery. He has a dr. excuse keeping him off work intll 03/03/14 but is boss is begging for him to come back next week 7 days after surgery to do light duty for the next four weeks. My question is if he were to quit would he able to collect unemployment if he quit and tried applying for ssi disability?

    1. UI is provided to those who are able and available to work. Since your husband underwent a surgery,he needs some rest.You can explore other state sponsored benefits such as Workers compensation which provide good benefits.

  40. I was recently laid off (Missouri)and it does not look good to be called back. I filed for unemployment and currently receiving benefits. I am 62 yrs old. I’ve considered taking my social security. Can I still receive my unemployment benefits if I am still looking for employment or is it reduced or terminated?

  41. My employer is eliminating my position and has given me a termination letter with 60 days notice. They are also offering me a severance package with eight weeks pay, but want me to sign a separation agreement releasing them of all claims brought against them. Would I still qualify for unemployment benefits if I sign the separation agreement?

    1. It is more likely the separation letter refers to something other than unemployment. Even if they are attempting to be absolved of their responsibility to unemployment, this is not how it would happen. So I think it is safe to sign the letter. Call the unemployment office to confirm. It would be in your best interest to call them to find out how / when to initiate a claim as the company is giving you eight weeks pay that you do not have to be “physically present” to earn.

  42. I am relocating to St. Louis, Mo. from Louisiana. Can I file for unemployment there until I find work. I have been applying online for work in the medical field, but has not been successful.

  43. I worked in Missouri from March 18-May 31 and then returned to live in California after termination of my job. I earned $22,000 during this period… How do I file for unemployment?

    1. Check the Missouri Unemployment website. Do you have wages in anyother state? First off, you can apply in any state in which you have wages and check the website or call the local office to find out if you qualify. If you have no other wages, they will tell you if the above mentioned wages are distributed in such a manner as to make you eligible. They go back 5 completed quarters and use the first four. Then they look at the highest quarter and compare those earnings to the rest of the four. You can ask if they would consider an alternate base year. Without knowing if there are more wages, I am just giving you a general idea of what you may encounter. If you worked in two states, they can combine those wages if needed.

    1. I am really sorry to hear that. Also sorry to say, we are not affiliated with any unemployment office so our ability to help is limited.

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