Eligibility for Unemployment in Wisconsin


Wisconsin residents often wonder, “What are the requirements to get unemployment, and am I eligible for it?” Residents who suddenly find themselves without jobs need to answer those questions and, when eligibility for EDD is confirmed, start receiving their benefits as soon as possible. Unemployment insurance eligibility confirmation may mean the difference between personal well-being and extreme financial hardship for unemployment applicants. Below, review information about eligibility for unemployment in Wisconsin, including topics such as:

  • Residency Qualifications for Unemployment Benefits in Wisconsin
  • Eligibility for Unemployment in Wisconsin Based on Income
  • Unemployment Insurance Eligibility Due to No-Fault Employment Loss in Wisconsin
  • How to Qualify for Unemployment When Leaving a Job by Choice in Wisconsin
  • Eligibility for EDD Benefits in Wisconsin Based on Work Requirements
Residency Qualifications for Unemployment Benefits in Wisconsin

Determining who qualifies for unemployment in Wisconsin begins with the unemployment applicant providing proof of United States residency. This means providing required documents to the state that prove the applicant is a U.S. citizen, or that he or she has legal permission from another country to work and live in the United States.

Typically, eligibility for unemployment means a resident should reside in the state, but an applicant can also claim unemployment benefits through the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD) if he or she has since relocated, but formerly worked in WI when a job loss was incurred. Eligibility for EDD benefits is contingent upon the lost job being performed in Wisconsin, not the unemployment applicant living in Wisconsin. Government workers and military members may qualify for Wisconsin unemployment without being residents of the state. Learn more about how to qualify for unemployment in Wisconsin when out-of-state by downloading our guide.

Eligibility for Unemployment in Wisconsin Based on Income

Unemployment insurance eligibility in Wisconsin is not just determined by whether or not the work was performed in the state. It is also determined by how much money was earned during the performance of the job in question, and how long that job was held.

Everybody who qualifies for unemployment must do so by earning a certain minimum amount during the previous year. The minimum allowable amount earned is subject to change each year, as are the minimum and maximum amounts that an unemployment beneficiary can receive in weekly compensation.

Unemployment Insurance Eligibility Due to No-Fault Employment Loss in Wisconsin

Eligibility for unemployment assistance also depends on the reason for the loss of employment. Most unemployment applicants who lose their jobs for reasons that are not their faults will be eligible for unemployment assistance, as long as they meet all other requirements for unemployment benefits. The DWD will check each applicant’s job loss-related eligibility for unemployment reason by contacting the applicant’s former employer.

In some cases regarding unemployment insurance eligibility, a former employer may argue about an unemployment applicant’s qualifications for unemployment benefits. If the employer and the unemployment applicant cannot agree on the reason for the job loss, then a hearing may be held. The results of that unemployment insurance eligibility hearing will determine whether or not unemployment insurance benefits will be paid.

How to Qualify for Unemployment When Leaving a Job by Choice in Wisconsin

When it comes to how to qualify for unemployment when quitting a job, the unemployment applicant must have done so for a reason that the Wisconsin DWD deems reasonable and acceptable. Unemployment applicants who voluntarily leave positions may still be eligible for unemployment benefits if they left do to improper or unsafe working conditions, reduced work hours or the company moving its operations too far away from the worker’s residence. Some workers who leave jobs due to family obligations that would lengthen their commutes too much may also be eligible for unemployment insurance assistance, but the DWD will make that decision based on the facts of each unemployment applicant’s case. If an applicant’s reason for unemployment is due to his or her own fault, he or she will be denied unemployment benefits in Wisconsin.

Eligibility for EDD in Wisconsin Based on Work Requirements

Qualifications for unemployment in Wisconsin also include rules related to an applicant’s ability to work. Every unemployment beneficiary in the state of Wisconsin who qualifies for unemployment must be able to work, willing to accept any work for which he or she qualifies (that has reasonable pay) and able to participate in job search processes. Download our free guide to learn more about the job searching and work training requirements for WI unemployment.

Among the procedures that are part of eligibility for EDD assistance is the process of filling out a work search log each week. In order to maintain eligibility for unemployment, the log must include several work search actions that the unemployment beneficiary completed in the previous week. Some of those actions could include registering with temp agencies, applying for jobs and taking job-related classes. Unemployment beneficiaries who do not complete their weekly work search logs may have their benefits canceled, unless they have valid reasons for not doing so, such as hospitalization.

What Is Unemployment Insurance in Wisconsin?

Unemployment insurance in Wisconsin is a type of financial assistance awarded to unemployed individuals within the state while they search for new jobs. This financial assistance is provided by the government and is only available for a set period of time. To learn how you can apply for WI unemployment insurance and the steps to take after you submit an application, download our guide.

Is Everyone Eligible for Wisconsin Unemployment Insurance?

Not every unemployed individual is qualified to receive unemployment insurance in Wisconsin. You must meet certain eligibility criteria to enroll. For example, you and your household need to meet an established income and resource threshold. Learn about the other necessary qualifications by downloading our guide