Unemployment Office

The unemployment insurance (UI) program is offered to you by Division of Unemployment Insurance, which is supervised by the Department of Labor and Regulation in South Dakota. The UI program is designed to provide temporary financial assistance to individuals who have experienced a loss of wages due to unemployment.



Firstly, you must be completely or partially unemployed through no fault of your own. At the same time, you be available to work, physically able to work, and making all efforts to find suitable employment. Similarly, you must have worked in South Dakota for the past 12 to 18 months. In the case that you are partially employed, you must report all of your earnings to the UI Division; this includes any wages earned during the week in which your claim is filed. Additionally, you cannot earn more than $25 per week without incurring a penalty. For any amount exceeding this limit, a dollar-for-dollar deduction will be applied. Another case in which you may qualify for UI benefits is if you have earned 75 percent of your wages through seasonal employment. In this case, you can receive financial assistance only for the months that you were employed.

Work Search Requirement

You must prove that you are willing to return to work as soon as a suitable opportunity is found. Thus, you must register with SDWORKS, which is a reemployment service (RES) program developed by the Department of Labor and Regulation. In addition, you may be required to register with a job search assistance program (JSAP) or a reemployment eligibility assessment (REA) program. However, each claim will be handled on an individual basis. Moreover, you must maintain a work search record and be able to submit this document to the UI Division if it is requested of you.

Monetary Eligibility Requirement

If you wish to determine your maximum and weekly benefit amounts, you must calculate your total earnings from your “base period.” This period is made up of the first four quarters out of the last five completed quarters of the calendar year. The earnings from this period will also be used to determine your monetary eligibility for UI benefits. According to this condition, you must have earned wages in at least three out of the four quarters of your base period, and you must have earned at least $728 in one of the four quarters.


In South Dakota, you cannot receive more than $345 per week or less than $28 per week in UI benefits. The number of weeks you can receive benefits is also limited. In one benefit year, which is made up of 52 weeks, you can benefit from the UI program for a maximum of 26 weeks.

How to File a Claim

If you wish to file a claim quickly, your best option is to apply online. However, you can also submit a claim by contacting 1-605-626-2452, which is the telephone number of the main UI Call Center in South Dakota. You will need your Social Security Number and the details of your employment history from the last 18 months.

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Department of Labor and Regulation 700 Governors Drive Pierre, SD 57501 (605) 773-3101 View Website Unemployement Claim File