South Carolina Unemployment Application
You must submit your first, or initial, claim in order for DEW to start the process and determine if your circumstances meet eligibility requirements.
You can file this claim online through the MyBenefits portal, which you can access 24 hours a day anywhere there is Internet service including SC Works centers.
If you are filing a first-time claim with MyBenefits, you must create an account. All you will need to start the account is a valid email address.
The other way you can file is at a local SC Works center.
Applying will go fasterif you have the following important information handy:
1. Your Social Security number
2. Your work history for the past 18 months including:
- Employers’ business names
- Employers’ addresses
- Employers’ phone numbers
- Your salary for each employer
3. If you are not a U.S. citizen, your alien registration number and documentation.
4. If you served in the military in the past 18 months, DD Form (Member 4 copy).
5. If you are a federal civilian employee, SF or SF-8 Form.
Want to know about how much you will receive?? —–>Calculate your benefits here
Read Frequently Asked Questions for Claimants in South Carolina
Unemployed?? ——>Check your eligibility for unemployment benefits
1. Am I eligible to receive benefits?
You must be unemployed through no fault of your own, and you must have made sufficient wages in your base period (the first 4 of the last 5 completed calendar quarters before the week in which you file your application for benefits, or alternatively the last 4 quarters). You must have worked a job where your employer paid unemployment insurance tax on your wages. Also, you must be able and available for full-time work.
4. How long will I receive these benefits?
The length of time that you will receive benefits is also based on how much you made during the base period, but not more than 20 weeks.
5. After I start receiving benefits, what do I have to do to remain eligible?
You must continue to file weekly either online using your MyBenefits portal or by telephone. You must actively seek appropriate, full-time work. You must regularly report to your local Workforce Center. Also, you must make four employer contacts each week, keep a record of these contacts, and two of these contacts must be through SC Works Online Services.
6. I was turned down for benefits. How do I appeal this decision?
Your appeal must be in writing, and it must be submitted within 10 days of the date the decision for denial was mailed to you. It may be submitted by mail, by fax or online through your MyBenefits account. Also you must keep filing your weekly claims regularly because you will only be paid for weeks you filed if you win your appeal.
Unemployment Benefits Appeals in South Carolina
You must do things to make a claim for unemployment benefits. You must:
- Apply for benefits.
- Register for work.
- Search for work.
- File weekly claims.
DEW's website has information about each of these steps. If you do not follow these steps carefully, your benefits may be delayed or denied.
Apply for benefits
The first step to determining whether you are eligible for unemployment benefits is to apply through DEW's MyBenefits portal. You will be required to answer a series of questions and given important log-in information.
Register for work
When you apply for benefits, you will be given log-in information for SC Works Online Services.You are required to log-in and create a resume on that website.
Search for work
You are required to conduct at least two work searches each week using SC Works Online Services. If you do not conduct the required two work searches using that webiste, DEW will stop your benefits for that week.
File weekly claim
You will need to continue filing weekly claims to receive benefits. You can file weekly claims using DEW's MyBenefits portal. or DEW's TeleClaim telephone system by calling Filing a weekly claim involves answering questions about whether you worked, earned any income and whether you were able, available and looking for work. Claims must be filed sometime between Sunday and the following Saturday for the previous week. You will be required to report your gross (before taxes) wages earned in the previous week. You must report the wages earned, even if you have not yet been paid those wages. If you do not file your weekly claim, or if you file it late, you may not receive benefits for that week.
For cases on appeal
If you have been denied benefits and are in the process of appealing your claim, you must continue to file weekly claims and conducting the required two work searches a week. If you fail to do these things, then even if your appeal is successful, you may not receive benefits.
Step 1: Check Eligibility!
Check this fact sheet to see if you might be eligible: [Click here]
Step 2: Submit an initial claim to verify eligibility!
Your first step is to submit an initial claim in order for DEW to determine if your circumstances meet the eligibility requirements of the UI program. Filing a claim is the only way for eligibility to be determined.
File and initial claim here. If you do not already have an account, you’ll have to register before logging in to complete the form.
- If you are not a U.S. citizen, you’ll need to provide your alien registration number and documentation.[MW1]
- If you served in the military in the past 18 months, DD Form (Member 4 copy).
- If you are a federal civilian employee, SF or SF-8 Form.
- If you are filing from out-of-state click here.
For a step-by step guide on filing this initial claim, you can use this resource[Click here]
You can also call this number for assistance! – but call during their normal hours from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays (Monday through Friday).
Step 3: Determine if you qualify for benefits!
Once you have submitted your application, DEW will review your claim and determine if you qualify for benefits.
Within a week after applying, you will receive a Monetary Determination by mail outlining your potential weekly and maximum benefits amounts. The maximum weekly benefit amount in South Carolina is $ before taxes.
NOTE: A Monetary Determination only outlines your monetary eligibility, and does not mean that you meet all eligibility requirements.
You may be asked to submit certain types of information to DEW in order to determine if you are eligible to receive benefits. This can be competed through the upload feature in the benefits portal, faxed or emailed. For more information on how to do this, please contact
You should receive a final eligibility decision by mail within 21 days of receiving the Monetary Determination. If you are deemed eligible, please note that you will not be paid for the first week of eligibility in each benefit year; this is considered a waiting week.
You may check your benefit status via MyBenefits or TelClaim.
Step 4: Although it may be difficult or impossible to find work during the coronavirus crisis, you will still need to register for work!
Register for work
Within two weeks of submitting your initial claim, you must register for work on SC Works Online Services. This includes creating a username and password within the system. If you fail to do so, you won’t receive payment.
You also must update your resume on SC Works Online Services every 90 days to continue receiving payment.
Step 5: “Search” for work.
To receive your unemployment benefits, you’ll need to conduct at least two (2) job searches each week through SC Works Online Services (SCWOS). You will be ineligible for benefits and not receive payment in any week in which you fail to perform two (2) job searches through SCWOS.
You may receive a waiver from the requirement to perform at least two (2) weekly job searches through SCWOS for good cause. Good cause includes, but is not limited to, verifiable electronic access and/or language barriers, and is determined by the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce on a case-by-case basis. Please contact us at if there are verifiable circumstances that would prevent you from being able to perform job searches on SCWOS.
You can register for work:
- Online— If you file your initial claim on MyBenefits, the confirmation page will provide you with a username and password for SC Works Online Services. Use this information to log in and create a resume. Once you have an active resume on file, you are officially registered for work.
If you are not given a username and password, you still will have to register for work on SC Works Online Services. Just click on “Not Registered?” and the system will take you through the process. Once you have a username, password and an active resume on file, you are officially registered for work.
- At an SC Works center near you— If you don’t have computer access, you can register online using a computer at one of many service locations across the state[MW2] .
To set up your account, just visit www.jobs.scworks.org and click on the “Not Registered” link in the upper right hand corner of the screen. Then login with your username and password. If you already have a username and password but need help remembering them, a link to recover those is also in the top right-hand corner of the screen. If you need help registering or using the site, please contact us at Also to reset your password for your original username, click on the “Forgot username/password?” link on the SC Works Online Services page. If you need help navigating SC Works Online Services to ensure your work searches are being documented correctly, view the Work Search Guide.
Check out these online videos for more step-by-step instructions!
But how is this process different if I lost my job due to coronavirus shut downs?
- · The Department of Employment Workforces states: “If your work is affected by COVID, you can apply for Unemployment Insurance. This process and these benefits are the same as applying for benefits if you lose your job through no fault of your own.”
- · So basically, you follow the same steps listed above for general unemployment
What about the government bailout?
- The plan is for individuals to get up to $1, and married couples to get up to $2,, plus an additional $ for each child. The size of a check would diminish gradually for those whose income is above $75,, while individuals earning more than $99, and couples earning more than $, will not be getting any checks. The checks will be based on a household or individual’s tax return unless they filed their tax return, in which case it will be based of their return.
- The treasury secretary, Steven Mnuchin, said last week that checks could be sent out as early as 6 April. The bill earmarks $bn for the checks.
- Unemployment benefits will grow substantially and go to many more Americans.
- Lawmakers agreed to a significant expansion of unemployment benefits that would extend jobless insurance by 13 weeks and include a four-month enhancement of benefits. At the insistence of Democrats, the program was broadened to include freelancers, furloughed employees and gig workers, such as Uber drivers.
Are there any other resources specific to South Carolina?
- South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center has additional resources about unemployment, food resources, immigration enforcement, etc. and how they have changed due to coronavirus: https://www.scjustice.org/covid19/
See some unemployment information from their website pasted below:
INFORMATION FOR EMPLOYEES
- You should apply for Unemployment Insurance (UI) even if you're not sure if you're eligible.
- The highest weekly benefit in South Carolina is $
- The average payment is around $
- If COVID made your employer lay you off or reduce your hours, you can get help. You can apply for UI through the SC Department of Workforce and Employment SCDEW. If you’re applying for UI between March 15 and April 18, the process has changed. You will not have to wait a week or do two job searches per week to receive benefits.
SOME OF THE SITUATIONS PEOPLE COULD BE ELIGIBLE UI IN A PANDEMIC
- If you’re out of work because your employer shuts down
- If you are forced to stay home because you’ve been infected or worried you may be infected
- If you are working reduced hours you may be eligible for partial UI
SITUATIONS PEOPLE COULD BE ELIGIBLE FOR PAID SICK LEAVE EVEN WHEN NOT OFFERED BY SMALL BUSINESS
- If you left work because you are infected or are at risk.
- If you left work because you’re caring for a sick family member.
- People will not be eligible for unemployment if they are still paid from their employee benefits, such as sick leave or paid vacation time.
INFORMATION FOR EMPLOYERS
- Employers who have a temporary shutdown, can apply for the benefits for their workers who have been laid off or had their hours cut back. These workers can receive six weeks of unemployment, without having to search for another job. This is different from standard unemployment insurance. For more information, employers need to contact SCDEW.
- Employers won’t be charged directly when claims due to COVID are filed.
- The deadline for paying unemployment insurance taxes for Q1 has been extended from April 30 to June 1, but quarterly wage reports must still be filed by April
IF YOU ARE AN IMMIGRANT WITH WORK AUTHORIZATION
IF YOU BELIEVE YOU WERE LAID OFF OR FIRED BECAUSE YOU TESTED POSITIVE FOR COVID (THE CORONAVIRUS)
- You can file a complaint with the Human Affairs Commission or the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
[MW1]Need to get more information on this! It would also be good if we could translate this page to Spanish. I couldn’t find much language support online.
[MW2]Doesn’t seem like this is an option now… need to search for other options
Sc file for unemployment
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