Unemployment insurance eligibility in Delaware is determined by specific regulations. Both initial eligibility for unemployment and eligibility after you have been accepted into the DE program are governed by these rules.
The regulations involve how you were separated from work, your ability to work, your availability to work, your continued search for work, and your willingness to accept a job for which you are reasonably qualified. To answer your questions about who qualifies for unemployment and what are the requirements to get unemployment, read the sections below.
Learn About Separation From Work in Delaware
One of the first qualifications for unemployment in Delaware concerns how you became separated from your job. You must be partially or totally out of work through no fault of your own. Being fired from your job or quitting your job means that you do not meet this qualification. However, you may well be eligible for unemployment insurance if you were laid off or had your hours reduced.
It there are any eligibility issues concerning the reasons for your separation from work, you will not receive any benefits until the issue is resolved. If you file online, a questionnaire regarding your work separation will be mailed to you. You must complete the questionnaire and return it to the division with 10 days of the mailing date. If you file in person, you are required to fill out the questionnaire at the time of filing.
Learn About Situational Unemployment Insurance Requirements in Delaware
Regarding how to qualify for unemployment in Delaware, you must meet certain situational requirements as well. Namely, you must be a resident of Delaware and be able and available to work, attend appointments at the Department of Labor and go to interviews.
Additionally, the following qualifications for unemployment must also be kept in mind:
- You cannot be on vacation while receiving unemployment insurance benefits, unless you attend an approved school or training verified by the Delaware Employment and Training Office.
- You cannot be enrolled in an educational program that limits your availability for work and collect unemployment insurance benefits at the same time.
- If you are sick or disabled, you will be required to provide a doctor’s certificate including information about when you can return to work. If you become sick or disabled while receiving benefits, contact the local unemployment insurance office immediately.
- If you put restrictions on the type of work you will accept, the location of the work, or the amount of pay you will receive, this could make you ineligible to receive unemployment insurance benefits. You cannot refuse a job offer for which you are suited and still receive benefits.
- You must be actively seeking work and you must be able to prove your search weekly. To continue receiving eligibility for EDD insurance, you will be required to make at least one new work search contact each week, and you will have to specify the employer’s name and address, the type of work sought, the result of the contact and the date when you file for your weekly benefits.
- You are required to complete a Work Search Log each week you are receiving unemployment insurance benefits. Failure to complete it could result in the termination of your benefits.
Regarding self-employment, if you file an unemployment claim while you are self-employed, or you become self-employed while collecting unemployment insurance benefits, you are required to report this information to the division. These benefits are intended to support stable employment, not the early stages of a new business or self-employed individuals whose projects have not been profitable.
Learn About Delaware Monetary Requirements
Another requirement of eligibility for unemployment insurance in Delaware is to meet the state regulations for wages earned and time worked during a set period of time known as the base period. The amount of money you were paid during your base period, which is the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters, determines your weekly benefit amount (WBA).
If you have monetary eligibility for unemployment insurance benefits, your Notice of Monetary Determination will show your weekly benefit amount and the maximum amount of benefits you may be eligible to receive.
Always check this notice to see that:
- It does not list any employers for whom you did not work.
- It lists only those employers for whom you worked during your base period.
- It lists your total wages during the base period.
If you believe that an error was made, report to the local unemployment insurance office where you filed your claim within 10 days, and request a correction. You must bring the Notice of Monetary Determination, your Social Security card, check stubs, W-2 forms, and any other proof of wages that you have. Your request for a correction will not be accepted if it is given after the 10-day stipulation. While you await the result of the protest, you must continue to file weekly claims.
Note: If 75 percent or more of your base period wages are from seasonal employment (in which you are employed by an identified seasonal employer, as defined by Delaware law), you will only be eligible to receive benefits for those months in which you were employed.
Learn About Delaware Employment and Training Office Requirements
You must register and participate in the required services of the Employment and Training Office. This includes participating in the re-employment services and training.
Once you return to full-time work, report your employment to your local unemployment office. If you are filing with TeleBenefits or WebBenefits, and you are asked the question “Have you returned to full-time work?” answer “Yes.”