Apply for Unemployment Benefits
- File or Refile a Claim
- Payment Methods
- School Employees / Educators
- Veterans Benefits
- What can I do if I'm Ineligible for UI benefits?
Unemployment Insurance (UI) is funded by a tax on employers. You do not pay for this benefit. UI is for individuals who earn wages from an employer who is required by law to pay the UI tax. It does not include self-employment. To be eligible for UI, you must unemployed through no fault of your own OR your work hours MUST have been reduced.
View your Benefit Rights.
File or Refile a Claim
There are two ways to file a claim for Unemployment Insurance
File a new claim or refile your existing claim anytime:
Contact us at (401) 415-6772 to file a new claim or refile your claim during normal business hours.
For Workshare claims, call (401) 462-8418
For Interstate claims out of state, call (866) 557-0001
View the Guide to Filing a Claim.
Claimants have two choices to receive their payments — Direct Deposit or Electronic Payment Card (EPC). If you choose EPC, your card will arrive with instructions on how to activate it and use it without incurring any fees.
- Please select either the electronic payment card or direct deposit payment option.
- If you select direct deposit, be prepared to provide bank name, route number and account number.
School Employees / Educators
School employees and educators may be entitled to collect unemployment insurance but have a different criteria to determine eligibility for unemployment insurance.
If you are a servicemember separating from active duty you may qualify for unemployment compensation if you are unable to find a new job. The Unemployment Compensation for Ex-service members (UCX) program provides benefits for eligible ex-military personnel. The program is administered by the States as agents of the Federal government.
You may be eligible if:
- You were on active duty with a branch of the US military, and you have separated under honorable conditions.
- You should file for benefits in the week of your discharge date, as shown on your DD-214 (Discharge Papers).
- You are allowed to file a claim in the state whose soil you are standing on. There are no residency requirements that need to be met for UCX.
- Retirement pay and disability retirement pay reduces UCX benefits dollar for dollar. VA benefits do not affect UCX benefits.
Filing for Unemployment for Military Personnel (UCX)
If you are currently unemployed, you can apply for Unemployment Insurance benefits online or by calling the UI Services Center at (401) 415-6772.
If you are currently collecting benefits or if you receive a notice of layoff from your employer and are called to active duty, you should call the UI Service Center and inform the interviewer of your situation.
You will need your Social Security number and your civilian and military job history. You will also need your Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty (DD Form 214 Member 4 Copy) available. We will inform you of any other requirements you may need.
You have two options for UCX payments; direct deposit or Electronic Payment Card.
What can I do if I'm Ineligible or Have Exhausted my UI benefits?
Many Rhode Islanders experiencing long-term unemployment have exhausted or may soon exhaust the maximum unemployment insurance benefits currently available. Here are other resources available to Rhode Islanders experiencing financial difficulties. If you were considered ineligible for these services while you were collecting unemployment insurance benefits, you may become eligible when your benefits are exhausted.
Programs operated by the RI Dept. of Human Services (DHS)
RI Works - provides temporary cash assistance for low-income and unemployed parents with children. If you and your children need temporary assistance, request an application at one of the DHS offices. You can talk to a DHS representative Monday – Friday 8:30 AM – 3:30 PM by calling 1-855-MY-RIDHS.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) - helps low-income people and families buy the food they need for good health. SNAP recipients qualify for benefits based on their income, the resources they have and the number of individuals in their household.
Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) - helps income eligible families pay their heating bills. HEAP is a grant. You are not required to repay it. View current income guidelines. Apply at your local Community Action Agency.
State of Rhode Island-Child Support Services - Parents who have a child support order or a medical order and have either lost their jobs or are working reduced hours may request that the RI Family Court modify the child support order. More information on filing a motion for relief can be found online at www.cse.ri.gov, or by telephone at (401) 458-4400.
netWORKri One-Stop Career Centers - a partnership of professional labor, training and education organizations that match job seekers with employers.
United Way 2-1-1 Rhode Island - offers information on many services in your geographical area, including: basic needs (food, shelter), child care, health services, individual and family counseling, disability services, emergency shelter, energy/utility assistance, financial assistance, homelessness, housing/rent assistance, suicide prevention and transportation assistance. Call 2-1-1, or visit www.211ri.org. Click here for the summer food program.
HealthSource RI - you can sign up for health insurance any time your life changes and you need health insurance.
The Economic Progress Institute Guide to Assistance - nonpartisan research and policy organization dedicated to improving the economic well-being of low- and modest-income Rhode Islanders. Individuals may access information on various programs for individuals and families.
Offer of Compromise Internal Revenue Service - an agreement between a taxpayer and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that settles the taxpayer’s tax liabilities for less than the full amount owed.
Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program operated by RI Housing - helps income-eligible participants afford safe, healthy homes in their community. The Housing Choice Voucher Program allows the individual or family to choose a home, including their present home, and use a voucher to obtain rental assistance. The landlord must agree to the terms of the program and the home must meet safety requirements. Click here to visit the "For Renters" web page.
Rhode Island Free Drug Card - Rhode Island residents may have access to a FREE Prescription Drug Card program. This program has “LOWEST PRICE” logic to guarantee that you pay the lowest price on your prescriptions. RIRx is accepted at over 50,000 pharmacies around the country.