A guide on how to claim UIF in South Africa

Claiming Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) Benefits in South Africa

The UIF provides financial support to unemployed South Africans who have contributed to the fund while employed. Here’s a detailed guide on claiming UIF benefits:


  • You must have been retrenched (laid off) or your employer terminated your contract (not resigned, suspended, or absconded). A CCMA ruling of “constructive dismissal” might qualify you even if you resigned.
  • You must have contributed to the UIF while employed.
  • You must register as a work seeker (explained later).
  • You must claim within six months of becoming unemployed.

Claiming Process:

There are two ways to claim UIF benefits:

  1. Online:
    • Register or activate your employee account on uFiling. You’ll need your ID number, email address, and cellphone number.
    • Once registered, submit an “Application for Benefits” for unemployment on uFiling.
  2. In-person:
    • Visit your nearest Department of Labour office.
    • You’ll be asked to sign the unemployment register, indicating you’re still seeking work.
    • Continue signing the register every four weeks to confirm your need for benefits.

Required Documents:

  • Completed UIF claim form (if applying in-person).
  • Your South African ID document (original and copy).
  • Your last six payslips (copies).
  • Proof of termination of employment (retrenchment letter, for example).
  • Banking details (for online payments).

After Claiming:

  • The Department of Labour will process your claim. This might take some time.
  • You’ll be notified of the outcome via SMS or email (if claimed online).
  • If approved, your benefits will be paid directly into your bank account.
  • You’ll need to keep signing the unemployment register (online or in-person) every four weeks to continue receiving benefits.

Additional Information:

  • Register as a work seeker: You can register on the Department of Labour website or at a public employment office. This shows you’re actively seeking work.
  • UIF call center: 0800 030 007 (for inquiries).


  • Applying online is generally faster and more convenient.
  • Meet all deadlines and keep submitting the required documents.
  • Be actively seeking work to maintain eligibility.

For detailed information and updates, refer to the Department of Labour website or the UIF website.