The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training (DLT) provides Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits to those who lost their job through no fault of their own. To receive UI benefits in the state, one should meet certain eligibility criteria. Read through the page to know more about the unemployment benefits eligibility requirements and overpayment of benefits.
Eligibility To Apply For UI Benefits In Rhode Island
To collect Rhode Island unemployment benefits, an applicant must meet the following eligibility criteria:
An applicant can monetarily qualify for the Unemployment Insurance in Rhode Island if he or she has earned at least $13,800 in either the regular base period or an alternate base period. If the applicant did not earn this amount, he or she might qualify only if he or she meets the following conditions:
The applicant must have earned at least $2,300 in one of the base period quarters
The applicant must have total base period taxable wages of at least one and one-half times his or her highest-paid quarter earnings
The applicant has total base period taxable wages of at least $4,600
Note – In Rhode Island, the regular base period is the first four of the five complete calendar quarters before the start date of an unemployment claim. The alternative base period is the last four completed calendar quarters preceding the first day of a benefit year.
The applicant must also meet job separation requirements to be eligible for Rhode Island unemployment benefits. They include:
The applicant must be fully or partially unemployed through no fault of his or her own
The applicant has a medical condition and cannot work
The applicant quit his or her job due to an unsafe workplace
The applicant quit his or her job due to harassment at his or her workplace
The applicant quit his or her job as he or she planned to move out with his or her spouse who is serving in the military
The applicant quit his or her job due to the domestic violence
An applicant should maintain his or her eligibility criteria throughout the benefit year to receive Rhode Island unemployment benefits without any hassle. An applicant can maintain eligibility requirements through the following methods:
An applicant can also file for benefits by calling (401) 415-6772. For interstate claims, he or she can call (866) 557-0001. Note– The state has a 7-day waiting period (Sunday through Saturday) at the start of a new claim. The Department will not pay benefits until the applicant completes a 7-day waiting period.
How To File Weekly Claims
An applicant must file a claim each week that he or she wishes to receive unemployment benefits. The weekly claims can be filed online or by telephone.
The weekly benefit rate in RI will be equal to 3.85% of the average of the total earnings in the highest two-quarters of the base period and will not exceed the defined maximum amount. In Rhode Island, the maximum weekly benefit a claimant can receive is $599, and the minimum is $59.
Use the benefits calculator to determine the estimated weekly unemployment benefit amount.
Disclaimer: The estimates are good in faith and accuracy is not guaranteed. We are not liable for any loss and damages caused by using the tools on our website. This calculator is here to assist you in evaluating what you might obtain if you are entitled to receive benefits. We make no promises that the sum you receive will be equal to what the calculator illustrates.
There are a few aspects that a claimant must know after applying for Rhode Island unemployment benefits.
Claimants may sometimes receive unemployment overpayments due to administrative errors, reversal of previous awards, identity theft, or willful misrepresentation. In case of overpayment, the Department of Labor & Training will send a Notice of Overpayment, and the claimant must repay the extra amount. If the claimant fails to pay back the overpaid benefits, the Department will deduct the amount from future benefits or withhold tax refund(s) and lottery winnings to recover the extra amount paid. A claimant can repay the overpaid benefits by sending checks or money orders to the Department. However, if the claimant does not agree with the overpayment notice, he or she can file an overpayment appeal through mail to or fax to the following address: Department of Labor & Training, Overpayment Unit P.O. Box 20380 Cranston, RI 02920
Overpayment Through Fraud
If a claimant receives benefits through false statements or willful misrepresentation, he or she will have a penalty in addition to repaying the overpaid benefits. The Department may also file a criminal case against such claimants and disqualify them from receiving unemployment benefits.
The Department offers extended benefits when the state’s unemployment rate is too high or an economic downturn throughout the country. To know more about the extended benefits, one can visit DLT.
Job Training Assistance
The Rhode Island Workforce Development Services Division offers programs that help job seekers in finding suitable employment. Their programs include:
Q. Can I qualify for UI benefits if my working hours are reduced?
You may be eligible for partial benefits if your hours are reduced. However, you will be paid less than what your weekly benefit amount would be if you were to be fully unemployed.
Q. Can I collect UI benefits while on workers’ compensation?
You can receive workers’ compensation when you are injured and cannot work. But you must be able, available and actively looking for work in order to collect UI benefits. This indicates that you cannot collect UI benefits while you are in workers’ compensation.
Q. How will I receive my payments?
When you file a new claim, you will have the option to select your payment method: direct deposit or electronic payment card (EPC). The Department recommends choosing payment via direct deposit to reduce delays in receiving your payment. Once a payment has been authorized, it gets deposited in 48 hours.