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Termination & Unemployment
Filing an Unemployment Claim - District of Columbia

Please select a topic below:

  1. Am I eligible to receive benefits?
  2. How do I apply for benefits in District of Columbia?
  3. How much will I receive?
  4. How long will I receive these benefits for?
  5. After I start receiving benefits, what do I have to do to remain eligible?
  6. I was turned down for benefits. How do I appeal this decision?
  7. More information on District of Columbia's unemployment insurance laws

1. Am I eligible to receive benefits?

You must be unemployed through no fault of your own, and you must have earned sufficient wages in your base period (the first 4 of the last 5 completed calendar quarters before the start date of your claim, or alternatively the last 4 quarters). Also, you must be able and available for full-time work.

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2. How do I apply for benefits in the District of Columbia?

You can apply online.

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3. How much will I receive?

Your weekly benefit amount is determined by the amount of wages in the quarter of the base period in which your earnings were the highest. As of January 7, 2018 the Maximum Weekly Benefit Amount was increased from $425 to $432 for new initial claims.

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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, and you can receive a total amount of benefits equal to 50% of your base period wages or 26 times your weekly benefit amount, whichever is less.

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5. After I start receiving benefits, what do I have to do to remain eligible?

You must continue to file weekly online at DC Works or via phone. Also, you must continue to be able and available for full-time work. You must actively seek employment, while keeping a record of your work search activities. To be actively seeking work, you must contact at least two employers each week you file for benefits. You must also register for work with your local DC Works! One Stop Career Center. Finally, you must accept suitable work.

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6. I was turned down for benefits. How do I appeal this decision?

You must appeal within 15 calendar days from the date the decision was mailed to you. Your appeal form may be submitted by mail or by fax. Also, you should keep filing your weekly claims regularly because you could only be paid for weeks you filed if you win your appeal. For more information on appeals, log in to your UI Claimant Services account.

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7. For more information on D.C.'s unemployment insurance laws:

Visit the District of Columbia Website

Read the Claimant Handbook




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