West Virginia Unemployment Application
Claim Assistance Phone Number: 800-252-5627
Unemployment benefits in West Virginia provide financial assistance to eligible individuals who have lost their job through no fault of their own. These benefits are managed by WorkForce West Virginia, and claimants must meet specific eligibility requirements to receive weekly benefits.
If you’re a West Virginia worker who has lost your job, you should apply for West Virginia unemployment benefits right away.
How to apply for WV unemployment insurance benefits
The best way to apply for benefits is online. If you don’t have access to a computer, you can go to your nearest WorkForce WV office and use a computer in the resource room. If you are unable to travel to a local office, you can call the helpline.
You can apply for WV unemployment benefits 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Visit the portal at uc.workforcewv.org and select “To file a new/additional Initial Unemployment Claim” from the options menu. Simply follow the prompts and enter your information to complete the application.
Apply at a Workforce WV Office
Find the nearest Workforce WV office where you can use a computer and access the internet.
Need more help?
Call 800-252-5627 if you need further assistance filing an initial claim.
What you need to apply
Have the following information ready before starting the application process:
- Your telephone number and a valid email address
- Your government issued photo ID
- Your Social Security Number
- Your home and mailing address, if they’re different
- Your direct deposit bank information, including bank name, account, and routing number
- If you worked for the federal government in the past 18 months, your Standard Form 8 and Standard Form 50
- If you are not a U.S. citizen or national, your Alien Registration Card
- If you were on active duty in the U.S. military during the past 18 months, your DD Form 214, Member 4 or Service 8
You will also need to have the following information about your former employer:
- Your employer’s name and mailing address
- Your employer’s phone and fax number
- The reason for leaving your job
- Your first and last day working with your employer
- If you’ve received a pension or severance package, provide details
- Any other states you’ve worked in other states in the past 18 months
- If you’re filing during your last week of employment, your gross earnings for that week
After you apply for WV unemployment compensation
Once you’ve completed your initial application for benefits, you must start your job search immediately and file your weekly certification.
The waiting week is your first week of filing a weekly certification and meeting all UI eligibility requirements. Before you can start receiving benefits, West Virginia UC Law requires one waiting week per claim. You won’t receive any money for this week, but claiming the week is necessary to get credit for it as your waiting week.
After you apply for benefits, you’ll receive a Monetary Determination notice in the mail. This notification isn’t an approval of benefits, but it lets you know how much you might receive if your application gets approved. You can also use the WV unemployment calculator to estimate your payment.
The Determination letter details the number of weeks you may receive unemployment insurance. Be careful not to mix up the “benefit year” with the number of weeks you’ll be eligible. The maximum number of weeks you can draw unemployment in West Virginia is 26 weeks, unless a very high unemployment rate triggers Extended Benefits.
The information on the Monetary Determination is what’s used to calculate your weekly benefit amount and benefit weeks. Make sure to review this document for any mistakes. If any amount is incorrect, please contact Workforce WV as soon as possible.
Setting up payment method
When setting up your Workforce WV online account, you can select your preferred method for receiving your unemployment benefit payment. You can choose direct deposit or debit card.
This option allows money to be directly deposited into your checking account. If you’re looking for a faster way to receive your payments, enrolling in direct deposit is highly recommended. Be sure your banking information is entered correctly. Any inaccuracies could lead to delays in your benefit payments.
If you decide later that you’d rather get your payments on a debit card, you can switch from direct deposit to a debit card once during your claim year.
With this option, WorkForce WV will mail you a U.S. Bank ReliaCard debit card. You can use this card to make purchases, withdraw cash, and pay bills anywhere debit cards are accepted.
If you choose the debit card payment method, you won’t be able to switch to direct deposit until your claim year is over.
If there’s an issue with your claim that could potentially disqualify you, you won’t receive a debit card until you’ve been confirmed as eligible for unemployment benefits. If you’re granted benefits, your first payment might be issued via check.
What if my unemployment application is denied?
If your application for WV unemployment benefits is denied, you have the right to file an appeal. You can challenge the decision and seek a review of your application by an administrative law judge. You only have 8 days to appeal after receiving your denial notice.