South Dakota Unemployment Benefit Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for unemployment benefits in South Dakota, you must meet the following requirements:

Basic Eligibility Requirements:

  • Be a resident of South Dakota.
  • Be unemployed through no fault of your own. This means that you were not fired for misconduct or quit without good cause.
  • Have earned a minimum amount of wages in the past 12 months. This is called your “base period”. You must have earned at least $728 in your highest quarter of the base period.
  • Be able and available to work. This means that you are physically and mentally able to work, you are not looking for work outside of your usual occupation, and you are willing to accept suitable work within your commuting area.
  • Be actively seeking work. This means that you are registering with the South Dakota Department of Labor (SDLR) and submitting weekly job search records. You must also be able to show that you are actively seeking work by taking other steps such as applying for jobs, attending job interviews, and contacting potential employers.

Additional Eligibility Requirements:

  • You must be able to document your identity and employment history. You will need to provide the SDLR with your Social Security number, driver’s license number, and employment records.
  • You must not be incarcerated or have a disqualifying criminal record. Certain types of crimes can disqualify you from receiving unemployment benefits.
  • You must not be receiving benefits from another state’s unemployment insurance program. If you are receiving benefits from another state, you may be able to receive partial benefits from South Dakota.

Weekly Benefit Amount:

Your weekly benefit amount is determined by your wages during your highest quarter of the base period. Your benefit amount will be between $28 and $514 per week.

Maximum Benefit Amount:

The maximum amount of benefits you can receive in a benefit year is one-third of your total base period wages, but not more than 26 times your weekly benefit amount.

Benefit Duration:

The length of time you can receive benefits is determined by your total base period wages. The maximum benefit year is 26 weeks.

How to File a Claim:

You can file a claim for unemployment benefits online, by phone, or by mail. To file a claim online, go to the SDLR website. To file a claim by phone, call 1-800-935-3208. To file a claim by mail, send a completed application form and all required documentation to the SDLR.

The SDLR will review your claim and notify you of their decision. If your claim is approved, you will be sent a debit card to receive your benefits.

Additional Resources:

  • South Dakota Department of Labor (SDLR):

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