South Dakota

South Dakota Unemployment Insurance Benefits

If you have become unemployed through no fault of your own, you may be entitled to unemployment compensation in the state of South Dakota. While you wait for the job market to pick up, unemployment insurance benefits provide a helping hand to keep you and your family housed, clothed, and fed.

There are some important prerequisites to entitlement to employment benefits. First, you must have worked at a job where your employer paid unemployment tax on your wages. Second, you must have lost your job through no fault of your own. Thus, you would be entitled to unemployment if you were laid off because your employer could no longer afford to keep you on, but you would not be entitled to compensation if you were fired for misconduct. Third, the wages you received during employment must be of a certain amount. In addition to these requirements, you must also file weekly certifications of your unemployment, register with the Department's job finding service, make a reasonable effort to find new work, and attend all Department events meant to assist you in finding work. As these requirements make clear, unemployment is meant to be a temporary form of assistance while you look for new work.

Compensation for unemployment is administered by the South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation. Your initial claim for unemployment can be made in two ways: First, by calling the Department at 605-626-3179, Monday through Friday, from 8:00am to 4:20pm (CST). Second, you can file your unemployment claim online at If you are approved to receive benefits, you will receive your benefits three to four weeks after making your initial claim.

You must thereafter, making a weekly claim certification filing, which can also be done over the phone or online as noted above. When making your weekly South Dakota unemployment claims, you will be asked several questions, including whether you completed any work for an employer, if you made the required two employment contacts, and if you are physically able to work.

Fraudulent claims for unemployment are dealt with harshly, so try to provide as detailed and accurate information to the Department as possible when making claims for unemployment. A misrepresentation may result in having to pay the benefits back with interest, denial of future benefits, fines, and imprisonment. As a final note, it is important to know that the U.S. Postal Service cannot forward correspondence from the Department of Labor and Regulation as a matter of law. It is therefore imperative that you contact unemployment in South Dakota if your address changes at any time.

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South Dakota