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Unemployment Compensation Process

A person circling job ads in a newspaper

Welcome to the DC Department of Employment Services Unemployment Compensation Program. The District offers two ways to file for unemployment compensation –  via the Internet and the phone. We strongly encourage that customers seeking unemployment benefits do so online for quicker service. To begin the process of filing for your unemployment benefits, you will need to have the following information readily available:

  • Your social security number
  • Your most recent 30-day employer’s name(s), address(es), phone number(s) and dates of employment
  • Your Alien Registration Number, if you are not a US Citizen
  • Your DD214, if you are ex-military
  • Your Standard Form 8 or Standard Form 50, if you are a former federal employee
  • Severance pay information (only applicable if you did or will receive severance pay)

Please note that confidential unemployment compensation information may be requested and utilized for other governmental purposes, including, but not limited to, verification of eligibility under other government programs. This notice is required by 20 C.F.R. § 603.11 – How do States notify claimants and employers about the uses of their information?

Important Alert to District of Columbia Employers and Residents: Notice of E-Mail Identity Theft Scam

If you receive an e-mail that claims to be sent on behalf of the Division of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) with an email address ending in @detma.org that requests information about a former employee, do not reply to the message and do not click the link in the message.

This appears to be an e-mail identity theft scam.
Neither the United States Department of Labor nor the Office of Unemployment Compensation at the District of Columbia Department of Employment Services sent the e-mail. The District of Columbia does not process DUA claims nor would either office request confidential information in this manner.
If you are an employer and responded to a request for employment or wage information from the Division of Unemployment Assistance or if you are a District resident and believe your identity has been compromised or stolen, please contact your local law enforcement agency.
The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) enforces the District of Columbia’s Consumer Protection Laws.  You can file a consumer protection complaint with the Office of the Attorney General at http://oag.dc.gov/node/442592, e-mail the Office of the Attorney General at consumer.protection@dc.gov, or contact OAG at (202) 442-9828.
Visit the Office of the Attorney General at http://oag.dc.gov/node/442592 for additional resources on protecting the identity of your business and employees.

Important Announcement Regarding Work Search Requirements for Unemployment Compensation Benifits

Beginning March 23, 2012, the Department of Employment Services will be enhancing and enforcing strict work search compliance measures as mandated by a recent change in federal law.

Failure to conduct a thorough work search (through seeking and applying for employment) or refusing to accept suitable work will affect your eligibility and may result in a denial of benefits.

DOES verifies work search activities and may ask for evidence of your work search efforts at any time. Protect your eligibility for benefits by keeping a detailed record of your work search. Provide as much information regarding your contacts and applications as possible.

For detailed information regarding work search requirements and how to comply, read the Work Search FAQs [PDF].

Service Contact: 
Office of Unemployment Compensation - Tax Division
Contact Email: 
Contact Phone: 
(202) 724-7000
Contact Fax: 
(202) 698-5706
Contact TTY: 
Contact Suite #: 
4th Floor
Office Hours: 
Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm