North Carolina

North Carolina Unemployment Benefits

North Carolina unemployment benefits are available to most persons who lose their jobs through no fault of their own. This may be from business closure, layoff, downsizing and even natural disaster. With the benefit unemployment compensation brings, you will be able to survive financially as you look for another job.

The minute you lose your job to a layoff or other unforeseen, impersonal action, you should file for your North Carolina unemployment insurance benefit. It is free. It costs nothing to file. Make sure to file directly with the Employment Security Commission of North Carolina (NCESC). It is on the web at There may be other online offers to file, but they will certainly charge you a fee. Again, filing a claim should not cost you any money. It is simple enough to do online, or you can do it in person at a NCESC office.

For a list of NCESC offices statewide, go to You can enter your city or county to find the most convenient location for you. At an NCESC office, they can help you file your claim and answer any questions you might have.

The Unemployment Benefit Is Based on Income

North Carolina unemployment benefit amount and duration is tied to the wages you were paid. Until you make your claim, it is difficult to know how much you will receive or for how long.

For example, if $3,600 were the total of your highest quarterly wages, this would be divided by 26, the maximum weeks allowed for benefits. As a result, you would receive about $139 per week.

North Carolina unemployment benefits last from 13 to 26 weeks depending on prior length of qualified employment. If you have been in your job for years, you will easily qualify for the 26 weeks of unemployment benefits.

Who Can Receive North Carolina Unemployment Insurance Benefits?

To determine eligibility, you will need to prove your employment record for at least the last year. Be prepared to give your employer's contact information and the date and reason for separation.

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North Carolina