To be eligible for Rhode Island unemployment benefits, you must meet the following requirements:
- You must be a resident of Rhode Island.
- You must be unemployed.
- You must have worked in Rhode Island during the past 12 months (or longer in some cases).
- You must have earned a minimum amount of wages during your base period.
- You must be able, available, and actively seeking work.
Base period wages
Your base period is the four calendar quarters of your earnings that were highest during the past five completed calendar quarters. To be eligible for unemployment benefits, you must have earned at least $1,740 in your base period.
Work search requirements
You must be able, available, and actively seeking work each week you are collecting unemployment benefits. This means that you must be willing and able to work full-time and that you must be taking steps to find a job. You must also be able to document your job search efforts.
Exceptions to the work search requirements
There are some exceptions to the work search requirements. For example, you may be exempt from the work search requirements if you are:
- Under the age of 18.
- Over the age of 65.
- A pregnant woman.
- A parent or guardian of a child under the age of 6.
- A student who is enrolled in at least half-time classes at an accredited educational institution.
How to apply for unemployment benefits
To apply for unemployment benefits in Rhode Island, you can visit the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training website or call the unemployment benefits hotline at (401) 415-6772.
Appealing a denied unemployment claim
If your unemployment claim is denied, you have the right to appeal the decision. To appeal a denied claim, you must file a written appeal with the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training within 14 days of the date of the denial letter.
For more information on Rhode Island unemployment benefits eligibility requirements, please visit the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training website.