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Reemployment Assistance Benefits
Unemployment Claims: Tips for Workers
A new “last name” filing system is being implemented Monday, March 30, for claimants who want to file by telephone. Based on the first letter of your last name, claimants should file by phone on the day assigned to their last names:
|Filing Schedule by Last Name|
|If you missed your day, you can file Thursday or Friday.|
- View possible eligibility scenarios.
- Eligibility Checker for state unemployment benefits and PUA.
- To file an unemployment claim, visit raclaims.sd.gov or call 605-626-3179 or 605.626.2452. For TTY service, dial 711 or 800.877.1113. Translator services available on request.
- You will need your Social Security number, driver’s license or State ID, and 18 months of work history.
- If you cannot get your claim filed in the first week, do not stress. Claims can be back dated.
- Unemployment benefits are a partial wage replacement. The average benefit is approximately half of your weekly wage, capped at a maximum of $428 per week (increased from $414 to $428 per week on any new initial claim filed July 5, 2020, or after).
- The quickest way to receive benefit payments is by direct deposit. The debit card option will add a few days for processing and mailing.
- As of now, a COVID-19 related layoff lasting less than 10 weeks does not require the person to be able, available, and actively looking for work.
- The non-paid waiting week required before an individual may receive unemployment benefits is waived, effective until further notice. The waiver period applies to weekly requests for payment filed for the week ending April 4, 2020, and forward.
- People who are being paid to work from home or those receiving paid sick or vacation leave are NOT eligible for unemployment compensation benefits.
- After you file an initial claim, you will receive a packet in the mail. It will contain your monetary benefit determination, claimant checklist and handbook.
- Check the status of your initial claim by logging in to your account. Status will be in green, under the Welcome message. See what the status means in this table.
- To be paid, claimants need to file a weekly request for payment. Unemployment claimants filing a weekly request for benefits can file online anytime at RAclaims.sd.gov or call 605-626-3212 after 6 p.m. CDT. Please note, the automated phone system is not available for PUA claimants. PUA claimants need to file online at RAclaims.sd.gov or print, fill out and submit the PUA Weekly Request for Payment.
- Beginning Aug. 2, 2020, and after, unemployment claimants must report at least two work search activities in the weekly payment request to be eligible. This is effective for the claim week ending Aug. 8, 2020. Failure to do so will result in ineligibility and no payment for that claim week. This requirement was previously waived due to the COVID-19 pandemic. View more details and exceptions.
- View the status of your Weekly Request for Payment in the Payment History screen. See what the status means in this table.
- View eight common reasons your payments might be delayed.
- Canceling a claim: If you are called back to work, do not cancel your claim. If you cancel your claim, you have to pay back what you’ve received in benefits. Instead, just leave your claim open, and do not file a weekly request for payment. If, however, you need to file in a different state or if you learned you were being paid your regular wages (for example: school staff), then cancel. Email CancelRA@state.sd.us and include your name and the last 4 digits of your SSN.
- Workers who have been placed on a temporary layoff related to COVID-19 but refuse to return to work when recalled by their employer will lose unemployment benefits, except for certain circumstances. See guidance.
- General questions can be directed to the Customer Service Center at 605.626.2452.
How to File a UI Claim video walks through the steps on filing a reemployment assistance (unemployment insurance) claim online.
Our Filing a Weekly Request for Payment video walks through the steps on filing a weekly request for payment on line.
Our Frequently Asked Questions video shows claimants where to find commonly asked questions and find frequently accessed quick links concerning unemployment claims.
Download the How to File an Reemployment Assistance Claim brochure (available below in Adobe PDF format in both English and Spanish) containing instructions on options for filing a claim for reemployment assistance benefits.
How to File an Reemployment Assistance Claim brochure in English
How to File an Reemployment Assistance Claim brochure in Spanish
Back to main Reemployment Assistance Benefits page