Eligibility for Unemployment Insurance in North Carolina

It is important to understand eligibility for unemployment in North Carolina to better prepare you in the event that you ever become unemployed or experience a reduction in your work hours through no fault of your own. Unemployment insurance eligibility is determined by a number of factors, such as your previous wages, your ability and availability to work and the reason for your job separation. It is important to keep in mind that unemployment insurance is not meant to replace your previous paycheck but rather to provide a layer of financial stability while you search for new full-time employment. Therefore, in order to remain eligible for unemployment, you must comply with work search requirements and register to work. To learn how to qualify for unemployment, review the sections that have been provided below.

Who qualifies for unemployment in North Carolina?

In order to meet eligibility for unemployment in North Carolina, you must meet wage requirements that have been set by the North Carolina Department of Commerce. Monetary unemployment insurance eligibility will be determined by the earnings that you have received within the last 12 to 18 months. When determining who qualifies for unemployment insurance, some forms of employment wages are not countable, such as self-employment or if you were considered a contractor. Not only does monetary eligibility determine whether or not you can receive unemployment benefits in North Carolina, but it also determines the amount of benefits that you can receive each week so long as you meet all other eligibility requirements. Qualifications for unemployment may also be affected by current income, such as retirement, pensions and severance pay. When considering the requirements for unemployment insurance in NC, it is also worth knowing if you worked in multiple states, you may have the opportunity to choose which state you would like to complete the unemployment application process in.

North Carolina Qualifications for Unemployment Regarding Job Separation

Your eligibility for unemployment in North Carolina will also depend on the reason for your recent job separation. In order to be considered eligible for unemployment benefits, you must be experiencing a reduction of work hours or a loss of employment through no fault of your own. Company downsizing, the elimination of a position or business closings can lead to what is referred to as “layoffs.” You will likely meet unemployment insurance eligibility if you were laid off from your position, as long as the layoff was not voluntary.

You may still be eligible for unemployment if you were terminated from your position. North Carolina eligibility for EDD will depend on the reason for your termination. If you were terminated from your job due to any form of misconduct, you will not be eligible to receive unemployment benefits. Examples of misconduct include violating company policies, not working scheduled shifts and repeated tardiness. However, you may still be eligible for UI benefits in North Carolina if you were fired because you were not a good fit or due to a lack of skill.

Similarly to termination, unemployment insurance eligibility after a resignation will be determined based upon the reason for your resignation. In order to qualify for NC unemployment benefits, you must have a “good cause” for quitting. Good cause includes work safety issues, avoiding criminal activity and quitting after an employer does not handle sexual harassment cases. In some cases, you may still be eligible for unemployment if you relocate for a military spouse or if you resign due to a severe illness or injury to yourself or a dependent child.

You will not be considered eligible for unemployment in North Carolina if you lost your job due to a labor dispute, such as a strike or lockout. In most cases, you will be ineligible if you are temporarily unemployed while on a leave of absence from your place of employment.

Qualifications for Unemployment in NC: Able and Available to Work

You may be wondering, “What are the requirements to get unemployment in North Carolina?” as the program has various requirements that must be met before and after enrollment. In order to be eligible for unemployment insurance benefits, you must be both able and available to work. In order to be considered available to work, you must be capable of accepting a position immediately. If you have young children, you must have already arranged child care. Additionally, to be considered available to work you must:

  • Not have unreasonable wage or hour requirements.
  • Be willing to travel a reasonable distance to a place of employment.
  • Have adequate transportation already arranged.

In order to meet qualifications for unemployment in North Carolina, you must be able to work, both mentally and physically, if a full-time position is offered to you.

Qualifying for Unemployment in NC: Registering for Work

In order to meet unemployment insurance eligibility in North Carolina, you are required to register for work with the NCWorks Career Center, which is North Carolina’s Employment Service Agency. If you are an out-of-state resident, you must register for work with the Employment Service Agency for the state that you live in. Learn more about eligibility in our in-depth unemployment insurance guide.

North Carolina Eligibility for EDD Work Search Requirements

In order to continue to be eligible for unemployment in North Carolina, you must abide by weekly work search requirements. In order to remain eligible for unemployment compensation, you will be required to make contact with a certain number of potential employers each week. Failure to make the required number of contacts within the week could result in the denial or delay of benefits for that particular week. You are permitted to use the same employer more than once during the week, but only if you are applying for more than one position with the employer. Qualifications for unemployment also require you to keep a record of all work search activities. Work search records should include the following:

  • The employer’s name.
  • Job title or position.
  • The location, website address or telephone number in which contact was made.
  • The date of the application submission or contact.

In the event that your eligibility for unemployment insurance is ever questioned It is recommended that you keep these records for five years, even after you are no longer receiving unemployment benefits. Find out more about program eligibility by downloading our comprehensive unemployment guide.