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

Federal Unemployment Benefits to End Sept. 4

North Carolinians are reminded of the upcoming expiration of federal pandemic unemployment programs. Without further legislative action, the week ending Sept. 4, 2021, is the last payable week for the following benefit programs:

  • Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC):  Federal extension to state unemployment benefits for people who have exhausted state unemployment insurance benefits. 
  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA): Federal benefits for the self-employed or people who are otherwise ineligible for state unemployment insurance benefits and extensions, and who unable to work as a direct result of COVID-19 each week. 
  • Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC): Supplemental $300 weekly benefit paid in addition to a claimant’s state benefits, PEUC or PUA. 
  • Mixed Earners Unemployment Compensation (MEUC): Additional $100 a week for claimants receiving state benefits or PEUC who also meet requirements for self-employment income. 

State unemployment insurance benefit program will remain in place. Under state law, these benefits currently provide eligible claimants with up to 13 weeks of benefits in a one-year period, with a maximum benefit of $350 a week.

Now available: NCDES Mobile App

The N.C. Division of Employment Security now offers a mobile app for claimants of unemployment benefits! Current claimants can use the NCDES mobile app to file weekly certifications for benefits, check claim ad payment statuses, and view important notifications. Download the NCDES app in the Google Play or Apple App store. Learn more.

Duration of State Unemployment Benefits

In North Carolina, the maximum number of weeks a person may receive state unemployment insurance benefits is adjusted two times a year, pursuant to state law. The maximum duration is based on applicable state unemployment rates and ranges from 12 to 20 weeks of benefits.

As a result, people whose claims are effective on or after July 4, 2021, may be eligible to receive up to 13 weeks of state unemployment insurance benefits.

People whose claims were effective between Jan. 3 and July 4, 2021, may receive up to 16 weeks of state unemployment insurance benefits.

Work Search Required for All Claimants

Under Executive Order 216, all claimants of unemployment benefits will be required to fulfill work search requirements beginning June 6, 2021. The work search requirements apply to all claimants receiving state unemployment benefits, Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.  

To receive benefits, you must make contact with at least three different employers each week and keep a record of your work search, as is required by state law. One of the three weekly job contacts can be satisfied by attending an approved reemployment activity offered by a NCWorks Career Center or a partnering agency. Learn more.

Claimants Must Provide Employment Documentation for PUA Benefits 

IMPORTANT: Federal guidelines require any claimants who have received PUA benefits on or after Dec. 27, 2020 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

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.

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.