The unemployment insurance (UI) program provides temporary financial support for unemployed workers who are actively seeking employment. The UI program is supervised and administered by the Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES).
In the state of Mississippi, your eligibility will be determined based on your reason for separation from employment. In general, you must be completely unemployed due to no fault of your own. At the same time, you must be available to work on a full-time basis, physically able to work, and actively seeking employment. In contrast, you will not be eligible to receive UI benefits if you were fired from your job for misconduct in the workplace, chose to quit your job voluntarily, or participated in a labor dispute.
Work Search Requirement
After submitting your initial claim for UI benefits, you must register with a reemployment service approved by the MDES. In most cases, you will be advised to register with the WIN Job Center, which is an employment assistance service provider in Mississippi. You must meet this requirement within one week of submitting your UI claim. In addition, you must maintain a work search record and make an effort to contact at least three employers per week for each week that you wish to claim UI benefits. This record can be maintained in paper format, but it must also be submitted online to the MDES at least once per month.
Monetary Eligibility Requirement
To determine your monetary eligibility, you will need to report all of your earnings to the MDES from the past 12 months. This period will be determined based on the first four quarters out of the last five completed quarters of the calendar year, and it is known as your “base period.” You must have earned enough wages in your base period to qualify for UI benefits. According to the MDES, you must have earned at least $780 in one of the four quarters, and you must have earned wages in at least two of the quarters. Moreover, your total wages in your base period must be 40 times your potential weekly benefit amount, which is determined by dividing your total wages by 26. In most cases, your maximum benefit amount will be one-third the total wages of your base period. Nonetheless, you cannot receive more than $235 per week or less than $30 per week in UI benefits according to state law in Mississippi. Furthermore, you cannot benefit from the UI program for more than 26 weeks in one benefit year, which is a set period of 52 weeks.
How to File a Claim
You must register with the MDES online services if you wish to submit a UI claim online. You can also file your claim by telephone; you can contact 1-888-844-3577. In order to complete the application process, you will need the following personal details:
- Social Security Number
- Mailing address and telephone number
- Driver’s license or identification card
- Employment history from the last 18 months, which includes the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of all your previous employers
- The dates of employment, your earnings, and the reasons for separation from all positions held within the last 18 months