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Unemployment Benefits West Virginia

Unemployment insurance benefits in West Virginia provide temporary financial assistance to eligible unemployed West Virginians who lose employment through no fault of their own.

Unemployment benefits in West Virginia serve as a financial lifeline for individuals facing job loss and offer unemployment compensation.

These benefits, provided by the state’s unemployment insurance program, offer financial assistance to eligible workers during periods of unemployment. 

In essence, they act as a safety net, helping individuals cover essential expenses while they actively seek new employment opportunities. 

In this article, we’ll discuss eligibility requirements and how to obtain unemployment benefits in the Mountain State. 

Understanding West Virginia Unemployment Benefits

West Virginia’s unemployment benefits are designed to bridge the financial gap for individuals facing the challenges of job loss, helping them meet basic needs such as housing, food, and other essential expenses while actively seeking new employment.

Key Components of West Virginia Unemployment Benefits

The state’s unemployment benefits are structured to encompass various components that collectively aim to offer comprehensive support

Monetary Compensation

Individuals eligible for unemployment benefits in West Virginia receive monetary compensation, calculated based on their prior earnings. 

This compensation is intended to partially replace lost wages during the period of unemployment.

Unemployment benefits serve as a critical safety net for both individuals and the broader economy. 

Job loss can lead to immediate financial strain. Unemployment benefits provide a crucial buffer, offering financial stability and preventing individuals from falling into financial distress during the transitional period between jobs.

The existence of unemployment benefits encourages individuals to actively seek new employment opportunities without the fear of immediate financial hardship. This contributes to a more dynamic and responsive labor market.

West Virginia Unemployment Services

Private WebsiteWest Virginia Unemployment
Apply OnlineFile a New Claim
Weekly CertificationFile a Weekly Claim
Appeal a DenialRequest a Hearing
Find a Local Officehttps://workforcewv.org/about-us/contact-us
Report Fraudhttps://uc.workforcewv.org/consumer
Coronavirus Updateshttps://workforcewv.org/covid19

Eligibility Criteria For Unemployment Benefits in West Virginia

Employment History

To be eligible for unemployment benefits in West Virginia, individuals must have a qualifying work history. 

This typically involves having been employed and earned a minimum amount of wages during a specified base period. The base period is usually the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters before the benefit year.

Reason for Job Separation

Individuals must have lost their job through no fault of their own to qualify for unemployment benefits. Common reasons that are considered eligible include layoffs, lack of work, or involuntary termination. If an individual voluntarily quits a job without good cause or is terminated for misconduct, they may be disqualified from receiving benefits.

 Availability for Work

Eligible individuals must be available for and actively seeking suitable employment. This includes being physically and mentally capable of working and ready to accept suitable job offers. Being actively engaged in a job search is a crucial requirement.

Registration with WorkForce West Virginia

Applicants are generally required to register with WorkForce West Virginia, the state’s employment service. This registration is a part of the job-seeking process and helps connect individuals with potential employment opportunities.

 Monetary Eligibility

There are specific monetary criteria individuals must meet to qualify for unemployment benefits.

 This often involves having earned a certain amount of wages during the base period. The West Virginia Division of Unemployment can provide detailed information on the specific monetary requirements.

Work Search Requirements

Those seeking unemployment benefits are typically required to actively search for work. This involves making a specified number of job contacts per week, applying for suitable positions, and keeping a record of these job-search activities. Failure to meet these requirements may impact eligibility.

 Temporary Total Disability

Individuals who are temporarily unable to work due to a disability may also be eligible for unemployment benefits under certain conditions. Documentation of the disability and its impact on the ability to work may be required.

Union Members

If an individual is a member of a union, there are specific rules regarding eligibility. Union members may be eligible for benefits if they meet the necessary criteria, even if they are not actively seeking union jobs.

Review the detailed guidelines provided by the West Virginia Division of Unemployment or consult with their representatives for specific and up-to-date information on eligibility requirements. 

Calculating Your West Virginia Unemployment Benefits

The amount of unemployment benefits in West Virginia is often determined by the individual’s earnings during a specific period known as the base period. 

The base period is generally the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters before the benefit year. It’s crucial to consider the wages earned during this period, as they form the basis for calculating the monetary eligibility for benefits.

Wages in the Base Period

During the base period, the individual’s wages are assessed to determine the monetary eligibility for unemployment benefits.

 In West Virginia, this calculation often involves looking at the highest quarter earnings.

 The total wages earned during the base period play a significant role in establishing the weekly benefit amount.

Weekly Benefit Amount (WBA) Calculation

The Weekly Benefit Amount (WBA) represents the sum an individual is eligible to receive each week while unemployed.

 In West Virginia, this amount is typically a percentage of the individual’s highest quarter earnings during the base period. 

The exact percentage and maximum benefit amount can vary, and the West Virginia Division of Unemployment provides detailed information on the current rates.

 Maximum Benefit Amount

West Virginia unemployment insurance sets a maximum limit on the total amount an individual can receive in unemployment benefits during a benefit year. This maximum benefit amount is calculated based on the individual’s highest quarter earnings. 

Once the maximum limit is reached, the individual is no longer eligible for extended benefits during that benefit year.

Additional Dependents

Some states, including West Virginia, may provide an additional allowance for dependents. If the individual has qualifying dependents, such as children, they may be eligible for an additional amount on top of the regular weekly benefit amount.


Certain deductions may apply to unemployment benefits, impacting the net amount received by the individual.

 Deductions can include income from part-time work, pension payments, or other sources of income. Understanding these deductions is essential for accurate financial planning.

Adjustments and Changes

It’s important to note that unemployment benefit calculations and regulations may change, and it’s advisable to check with the West Virginia Division of Unemployment for the most up-to-date information. Changes in state laws or economic conditions can influence benefit amounts and eligibility criteria.

Maintaining Eligibility and Weekly Certification

Maintaining eligibility for unemployment benefits in West Virginia involves a crucial step—weekly certification. Individuals are typically required to certify their eligibility and report any income earned during the previous week.

 This certification process is often done online or by phone and ensures that recipients are actively seeking employment and meeting other eligibility criteria.

Work Search Requirements

Recipients of unemployment benefits are generally obligated to actively search for suitable employment opportunities. 

This includes applying for jobs, attending job fairs, and participating in job training programs. Detailed records of these job search activities may be required as part of the weekly certification process.

Reporting Income

Any income earned during the week must be reported when certifying eligibility. This includes income from part-time work, temporary employment, or any other sources. Failure to report income accurately can result in overpayment, leading to complications in benefit disbursement.

Availability for Work

Individuals must remain physically and mentally capable of working and be available for suitable employment opportunities.

 Being ready and willing to accept suitable job offers is a fundamental requirement for maintaining eligibility.

Job Refusals

Recipients are generally expected to accept suitable job offers. Refusing a job offer without valid reasons can lead to disqualification from unemployment benefits. The definition of “suitable employment” may vary, and individuals should consult the West Virginia Division of Unemployment for guidance.

Participating in Reemployment Services

Individuals may be required to participate in reemployment services offered by the state, such as job counseling or training programs. Compliance with these services is often a condition for continued eligibility for unemployment benefits.

Keep Detailed Records

When applying for social security disability, individuals should maintain detailed records of their job search activities, including the names of employers contacted, positions applied for, and the outcomes of job interviews. These records may be requested as part of the eligibility verification process.

Appealing a Denied Unemployment Claim

Understanding the Denial

If your unemployment claim is denied in West Virginia, it’s crucial to first understand the reasons for the denial. Common reasons include issues with eligibility criteria, incomplete documentation, or disputes with your former employer.

 Reviewing Denial Notice

Carefully review the denial notice provided by the West Virginia Division of Unemployment.

This notice typically outlines the specific reasons for the denial and includes instructions on how to proceed with an appeal.

 Filing an Appeal

If you disagree with the denial, you have the right to appeal the decision. The appeal process in West Virginia usually involves submitting a written request for an appeal to the Appeals Tribunal within a specified timeframe.

 This request should include your name, Social Security number, and the reason for the appeal.

 Deadline for Appeals

Pay close attention to the deadline for filing an appeal. Missing the deadline may result in a loss of your right to appeal.

 Typically, the deadline is stated in the denial notice, and it’s essential to adhere to this timeline.

 Appeals Tribunal Hearing

Once your appeal is filed, a hearing will be scheduled before an Appeals Tribunal. This tribunal is an independent body that reviews the case, hears arguments from both parties (you and your former employer), and makes a decision based on the evidence presented.

Gathering Evidence

Prepare for the appeals hearing by gathering relevant evidence to support your case. This may include employment records, documentation of your job search efforts, and any other evidence that addresses the reasons for the denial.


You have the right to represent yourself or be represented by someone, such as an attorney, during the appeals hearing. Having someone knowledgeable about the unemployment appeals process can be beneficial.

Appeals Tribunal Decision

Following the hearing, the Appeals Tribunal will issue a written decision. This decision will outline whether the denial is upheld or overturned. If dissatisfied with the tribunal’s decision, there may be additional levels of appeal, such as the Board of Review.

Board of Review

If the decision from the Appeals Tribunal is unfavorable, you may have the option to appeal further to the Board of Review. This represents a higher level of appeal, and the process involves submitting a written request for review.

 Legal Assistance

If the appeals process becomes complex or if you believe there are legal issues involved, it may be advisable to seek legal assistance. Legal professionals with experience in unemployment law can provide unemployment resources and guidance. 

For the most up-to-date and detailed information on West Virginia Unemployment Benefits, visit the official website or unemployment resource provided by your state’s labor department. 

West Virginia Unemployment Office Locations

WorkForce WV – Beckley200 New River Town Center
Beckley, WV 25801
WorkForce WV – Charleston Center1321 Plaza East PO Box 2753
Charleston, WV 25330-2753
WorkForce WV – Clarksburg153 W. Main St. Suite B
Clarksburg, WV 26301
WorkForce WV – Elkins1023 North Randolph Avenue
Elkins, WV 26241
WorkForce WV – Fairmont416 Adams Street Suite 220
Fairmont, WV 26554
WorkForce WV – Huntington2699 Park Avenue Suite 240
Huntington, WV 25704
WorkForce WV – Putnam3554 Teays Valley Road
Mid Valley Square Suite 117
Hurricane, WV 25526
WorkForce WV – Logan130 Stratton Street PO Box 1619
Logan, WV 25601-1619
Career One Stop – Martinsburg202 Viking Way
Martinsburg, WV 25401
Region 7 Workforce Development Board151 Robert C Byrd Industrial Park Rd Suite 2
Moorefield, WV 26836
WorkForce WV – Morgantown304 Scott Avenue
Morgantown, WV 26508
WorkForce WV – New Martinsville257 North State Route 2
New Martinsville, WV 26155
WorkForce WV – Parkersburg300 Lakeview Center
Parkersburg, WV 26101
WorkForce WV – Mercer195 Davis Street Suite 102
Princeton, WV 24739
WorkForce WV – Greenbrier Valley330 Red Oaks Shopping Center Suite 1
Ronceverte, WV 24970
WorkForce WV – Summersville830 Northside Drive Suite 123
Summersville, WV 26651
WorkForce WV – Weirton100 Municipal Plaza Suite 300
Weirton, WV 26062
WorkForce WV – Welch110 Park Avenue Suite 100
Welch, WV 24801
American Job Center – Wheeling1275 Warwood Ave
Wheeling, WV 26003

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