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Have employment questions related to COVID-19? State agency wants to help

The S.C. Department of Employment & Workforce wants to help answer your questions and get you to the right resources.
Credit: S.C. Department of Employment & Workforce Development

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Have employment questions related to coronavirus closures and impacted businesses? The S.C. Department of Employment & Workforce (SCDEW) wants to help answer them and get you to the right resources.

In this unprecedented time, agency officials say they are working in real time with federal and state officials to create solutions and support for individuals and businesses. 

As the agency continues to work with these partners, they are collecting common questions and challenges that the South Carolina workforce is facing. 

Those questions and answers are being compiled on a COVID-19 Resource Hub on SCDEW's website. You can find the information HERE

"We are having ongoing conversations with business associations, business leaders and individual employers on their needs and how we can assist them,” says Dan Ellzey, South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce Executive Director.

Ellzey says the agency is seeing an exponential increase in the number of filings for unemployment insurance claims as well as call volume. "Our staff is working very hard to help South Carolinians in this difficult time, and we ask for your patience as we work together to address your workforce needs.”

Here's some specific information to get you started:  

  • For general information about Unemployment Insurance benefits related to COVID-19, go to: https://dew.sc.gov/covid-hub.

  • For individuals whose employment has been affected by COVID-19 – due to illness, a school or daycare closing or caring for a family member with a COVID-related illness – sick leave or paid time off through their employer would be the appropriate resource for this time away from work.

  • If a person is out of work due to a business closing, layoff or reduction in hours related to COVID-19, those individuals should file for unemployment insurance benefits.

  • There may be additional sources of funding for workers and businesses in the federal house bill HR 6201, Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

  • If you are uncertain about your eligibility, you are encouraged to apply for unemployment insurance benefits.

How do I apply for benefits? 

You must first file a claim for state unemployment benefits by visiting www.dew.sc.gov and clicking on the “MyBenefits Login” located at the top right corner of the home page. 

  • If you have previously filed for unemployment benefits and remember your credentials, login with your username and password.
  • If you have previously filed for unemployment benefits and do not remember your credentials, click “forgot username/password” link.
  • If this is your first time filing for unemployment benefits, click the “I am new here. I need to register now” link.

How do I request payments for a week?

You must certify each week that you are still unemployed as a direct result of COVID-19 and that you meet the ongoing eligibility requirements. Weekly certifications can be completed online by visiting www.dew.sc.gov and clicking the MyBenefits Login in the top right corner of the page.

What are the requirement for reporting wages?

If you are not self-employed and work during a week that you request benefits, you must report your hours and gross earnings when you file your weekly claim. If you are self-employed, you must report all wages during the week in which you were paid, not when you performed the work. Please note, failure to properly report all gross earnings may result in overpayment that you will be required to pay back.

For more questions, answers and resources, visit SCDEW's COVID-19 Resource Hub.