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North Carolina Division of Employment Security

The Division of Employment Security is working hard to help North Carolinians understand unemployment insurance and receive the benefits for which they are eligible. If you have questions or need assistance with your claim:

  • Find out the status of your claim at any time by phone or by clicking on the Claim Status tab in your online account.
  • Chat with one of our agents here at des.nc.gov or call our Customer Call Center for assistance. 
  • Check our website frequently for updated FAQs and information for individuals and employers.

Please note that NCWorks Career Centers do not process unemployment claims, and staff at those offices cannot answer specific questions about your claim.

Online Account Access

Create Account

Individuals: Create an Online Account to file for unemployment.

Employers: Create an Online Account to manage your tax and unemployment information.

News and Alerts

Claimants Must Provide Employment Documentation for PUA Benefits 

IMPORTANT: Federal guidelines require any claimants who have received PUA benefits on or after Dec. 27, 2021 to provide proof of prior employment or self-employment to receive benefits. Claimants fail to submit acceptable documentation by the deadline in their notice from DES will not be eligible to continue receiving PUA benefits and may be required to pay back benefits received since Dec. 27, 2020. Learn more.

Employers: How to Report Refusal of a Job Offer 

Claimants who refuse a suitable offer of work are typically ineligible to receive unemployment benefits, unless it is determined that the claimant has good cause to refuse to return to work. 

Employers may report to the Division of Employment Security that an individual has refused an offer of work through the Refusal of Job Offer link on the Claims Services menu of their DES online account. DES will review information provided by the employer and the claimant to determine whether the claimant may continue receiving unemployment benefits. 

For Employers: How to Report Refusal of a Job Offer

Work Search Guidelines 

All individuals who apply for unemployment benefits on or after March 14, 2021, including those who file a new claim because they are starting a new benefit year, are required to complete work search activities each week to receive benefits. Claimants must make three job search contacts each week and keep a detailed record of their work search. Due to COVID-19, up to two of the three contacts may temporarily be satisfied by participating in approved reemployment activities offered by local NCWorks Career Centers and/or their partner agencies.  Learn more.

Identity Verification through ID.me

Identity verification through ID.me is one of the tools DES uses to help protect the security of claimants’ unemployment accounts and prevent unemployment insurance fraud.

Claimants who are required to verify their identity through ID.me will receive an email from DES with more information and a link to begin the verification process. Once verified, the claimant will receive an email from DES with information about accessing their account for unemployment benefits. The claimant should allow up to 48 hours after verification to be able to access their account. Learn more.

Employer Base Tax Rate Reduced

Under N.C. Senate Bill 114, the employer base contribution rate to the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund for 2021 has been reduced from 2.4% to 1.9%. The base contribution rate is one of the factors used to calculate an employer’s unemployment insurance tax rate for the year.

This may result in an unemployment insurance tax rate reduction for active, experience-rated employers. 

  • Employers who are affected by this change will receive a Revised 2021 Tax Rate Notice from the Division of Employment Security (DES) by mail. Employers should take this opportunity to verify that the mailing address on their DES account is accurate to ensure prompt delivery of the notice. 
  • Employers whose tax rate for 2021 is already at the minimum rate allowed by law (0.06%) will not be affected by this change. 
  • Employers whose tax rate for 2021 is already at the maximum rate allowed by law (5.76%) may or may not receive a rate reduction, depending on individual recalculation results. 
  • Employers who have the standard new employer rate of 1.00% are not affected by this change, as they are not yet experience rated.

DES Proposed Rules

Notice is hereby given in accordance with G.S. 150B-21.2 that the Department of Commerce - Division of Employment Security intends to adopt the rules cited as 04 NCAC 24D .0201, .0206, amend the rules cited as 04 NCAC 24D .0102, .0202, .0203; 24F .0304, and repeal the rules cited as 04 NCAC 24D .0103-.0106; and 24F .0303. The notice of text of the proposed rules is found on the Laws and Rules page.