Claiming Unemployment Insurance | Western Cape Government

Claiming Unemployment Insurance

Description:

UIF

Find out about the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF), as well as the different types of circumstances the fund covers.

What is the Unemployment Insurance Fund?

The fund offers short-term financial assistance to workers when they become unemployed or are unable to work because of illness, maternity or adoption leave. The fund also assists the dependants of a contributing worker who has died.

The Unemployment Insurance Act and Unemployment Insurance Contributions Act apply to all employers and workers, but not to:

  • those working less than 24 hours a month for an employer
  • learners
  • public servants
  • foreigners working on contract
  • workers who get a government old age pension
  • workers who only earn commission

Domestic employers and their workers are included under the Act since 1 April 2003.

Workers pay 1% of their salaries every month. Their employers contribute a further 1%.

It is the employer's responsibility to deduct the worker's contribution from their salary (excluding commission earnings) and pay it to the fund along with their contribution.

The employer is also responsible for making sure that all employees are registered with the UIF. If an employee has been registered and the contributions are paid, then that employee will be able to claim from the fund. The employee does not need a card or any other proof that they have contributed to the UIF.

Foreigners who are permanent workers qualify for UIF, and employers must also register foreigners with the fund.


How does the fund help employees?

Employees who are registered with the UIF and who have been paying contributions to the fund can claim if they lose their jobs or cannot work.

There are five kinds of benefits covered by UIF:

  • Unemployment benefits
  • Illness benefits
  • Maternity benefits
  • Adoption benefits
  • Death benefits

You can claim unemployment benefits if you have been dismissed or retrenched or if your contract has expired. You cannot claim if you have voluntarily resigned from your job.

You can claim illness benefits if you are off work due to illness for two weeks. Benefits are paid from the date on which you stopped working.

Maternity benefits can be claimed if you are pregnant and take maternity leave. You can claim for 17 weeks. If you miscarry in the third trimester or the baby is stillborn, you can claim for 6 weeks.

You can claim adoption benefits if you legally adopt a child younger than two years old and you leave work to look after that child. Only one of the adopting parents can apply for benefits.

The wife/ husband or minor child of someone who has died can claim death benefits if the deceased paid contributions to the fund.


Employers can register at the UIF in the following ways: 

  • Registering online  Young African businesswoman using laptop, Hispanic colleague watching They are sitting next to each other, looking at screen and concentrating

Step 1: Get the necessary information (ID numbers, addresses of employers and workers) ready.

Step 2: Complete the online registration forms. 

Note: Online registration is not yet active.

The best alternative will be to complete the UI-8 and UI-19 forms and submit them at your nearest UIF office for processing. After this, you will be issued with a reference number, with which you can complete the registration processes online. 

 

  • Registering via e-mail 

Step 1: Get the UI-8 and UI-19 (for business employers); or the  UI-8D and UI-19 (for domestic employers) from the website.

Step 2: Employers must complete the forms for both themselves and their workers. This form of registration of workers asks for an employer reference number. However, if the employer does not have a reference number yet, this part can be left open. The UIF will create a reference number and send it to the employer.

Step 3: Both domestic and commercial employers can e-mail the forms to webmaster@uif.gov.za.

 

  • Registering via telephone

Step 1: Get the necessary information (ID numbers and addresses of employers and workers) ready before phoning the UIF.

Step 2: Phone the UIF at 012 337 1680 and follow the instructions of the UIF official.

Note: Telephonic registration is not yet active. 

The best alternative will be to complete the UI-8 and UI-19 forms and submit them at your nearest UIF office for processing. After this, you will be issued with a reference number, with which you can complete the registration processes. 

 

  • Registering via fax 

Step 1: Get the UI-8 (commercial employers) or the UI-8D and UI-19 (domestic/private employers) forms from your nearest Department of Labour office, or on the Department of Labour's website.

Step 2: Fill in the forms. Employers must complete the forms for both themselves and their workers. This form of registration of workers asks for an employer reference number. However, if the employer does not have a reference number yet, this part can be left open. The UIF will create a reference number and send it to the employer.

Step 3: Fax the completed forms back to the UIF at 086 713 3000.

 

  • Registering via mail Business people shaking hands at a desk in an office

Step 1: Get the UI-8 (commercial employers) or the UI-8D and UI-19 (domestic/private employers) forms from your nearest Department of Labour office, or on the Department of Labour's website.

Step 2: Fill in the forms. Employers must complete the forms for both themselves and their workers. This form of registration of workers asks for an employer reference number. However, if the employer does not have a reference number yet, this part can be left open. The UIF will create a reference number and send it to the employer.

Step 3: Mail the forms to the UIF at: The UIF, Pretoria, 0052.

 

  • Registering at a labour centre  

​Step 1: Get the necessary information (ID numbers and addresses of employers and workers) ready before visiting a labour centre near you.

Step 2: Get the UI-8 (commercial employers) or the UI-8D and UI-19 (domestic/private employers) forms from your nearest Department of Labour office.

Step 3: Fill in the forms. Employers must complete the forms for both themselves and their workers. This form of registration of workers asks for an employer reference number. However, if the employer does not have a reference number yet, this part can be left open. The UIF will create a reference number and send it to the employer.

Step 4: Hand in the forms to the labour centre staff.


The UIF uFiling online service 

uFiling is a free, secure and easy-to-use system allowing employers to update individual employee salary details. It enables a streamlined UIF declaration returns process and automatically calculates the UIF contributions associated with your monthly return.

uFiling integrates securely with the UIF systems when issued declarations are submitted and contribution payments are made.

Leveraging the flexibility of the internet, uFiling gives employers 24/7 access to UIF declaration information from anywhere in the world, provided you have an internet connection.

With regular updates and automated e-mail notifications from uFiling, you are now able to use uFiling to help ensure you as an employer will remain compliant with the latest UIF legislative requirements, eliminating the stress and hassles usually associated with compliance.

There are different steps to take to activate the specific uFiling account applicable to you.

Please consult the uFiling System User Guide for step-by-step instructions.

Instructions:

What employers may not do:

  • Deduct more than 1%
  • Deduct outstanding amounts when they fall behind with payments
  • May not ask for a fee deducting the money.

If employers deduct too much money by accident, they must pay the extra money back to workers.


Unemployed workers must apply for benefits at their nearest labour centre in person. They must be registered as work-seekers and take the necessary documents with them. 
 
There are different procedures for claiming the various benefits available: Man going over paperwork with customer Mature African American man (40s) reviewing documents with mid adult woman (30s).

Claiming unemployment benefits

If you want to claim from the UIF you need to go to your nearest Labour Office. There you will be asked to sign the unemployment register. You will be told when you need to come back and sign the register again. You will have to sign every four weeks to show that you still need to claim the UIF benefits.

You must go back to the office and sign the register on the correct date. If you are ill, you must take a doctor's certificate with you to the labour centre.

You will be given a white card, which the UIF officer will sign each time you sign the register.

If everything is in order, you should start getting money from the fund within eight weeks of registering. The money will then be paid every four weeks, until all the benefits are used up.

If you don't receive your money in eight weeks, you should phone the Labour Centre and ask them to find out why there is a delay. Remember to have your name and ID number ready.

You will receive a slip every time you receive money so that you can see how much you have received and how much you can still get.

To claim unemployment benefits you need to have:

  • A copy of 13-digit bar-coded identity document.
  • A copy of your last six payslips.
  • Information supplied by your employer (UI-19).
  • A service certificate from the employer.
  • Proof of registration as a work seeker.
  • A fully completed registration form.

If you want to receive unemployment benefits you need to be prepared to:

  • Go for training or career counseling if the UIF officer asks you to.
  • Be available for work. If you are offered work, you need to be ready to work.
  • Go to different companies to ask for work. You will get a form that needs to be signed showing that you have looked for work and that there are no jobs available.

You need to collect your unemployment benefits from the Labour Office on the date they said the money will be there. You have to collect the money yourself and you must have your white card and ID book with you.


Claiming illness benefits

To apply for illness benefits, you need to register at the Labour Office nearest to you. If you are too ill to go to the office yourself, a friend or family member can get the form from the office and bring it to you to sign. The signed form then needs to be returned to the Labour Office.

You will need:

  • A copy of your bar-coded identity document.
  • Copies of your last six payslips.
  • Information supplied by your employer (UI-19).
  • A service certificate from the employer.
  • Proof of banking details.
  • A statement of amount received from your employer during the period of the illness.
  • A fully completed registration form.

You also need to submit a medical certificate (Form UF86) from your doctor. You need to get your doctor to complete the appropriate section of Form UF86 and then submit this to the UIF claims officer at the Labour Office.

The Department of Labour will consider the application and post Form UF87 to you. You need to complete this form and your doctor needs to sign it. You then submit this form to the claims officer as well.

You will be paid benefits for the time that the doctor has booked you off work but not for the first two weeks off work. You will also only be paid for the time that you have not received normal wages from your employer.

Illness benefits will be paid to you by cheque and posted to you.

Remember, you cannot claim illness benefits if your illness was caused by your own misconduct or if you unreasonably refuse treatment or fail to follow the doctor's instructions.

If you have lost your job as well as being too ill to work, you need to inform the claims officer of this because you might also be able to claim unemployment benefits for the period not covered by the illness benefits.


Claiming UIF when pregnantClaiming maternity benefits

To claim maternity benefits, you need to register at the Labour Office in person or organise for someone to go in your place. All necessary documents must go with the applicant to the labour office.

To register you will need:

  • A 13-digit bar-coded identity document or passport.
  • Copies of your last six payslips
  • Form UI-2.8 for banking details.
  • Information supplied by your employer (UI-19).
  • A service certificate from the employer.
  • Proof of your banking details.
  • A statement of amount received from employer during maternity leave.
  • Form UI-2.7.
  • Form UI-2.3 (application form).
  • Medical certificate from a doctor or birth certificate of the baby.
  • Form UI-4 (follow-up form).
  • Fully completed registration form.

When you register, you will be given Form UF92. This form must be filled in by your doctor. You then submit this form to the UIF claims officer at the Labour Office.

The claim will be paid by cheque, which will be posted to you. To apply for benefits after the baby is born, you need to complete Form UF95 with help from the doctor who delivered the baby. If you are also unemployed, then you must notify the claims officer.


Claiming adoption benefits

If you want to claim adoption benefits, you need to register with a claims officer at your nearest Labour Office.

You will need to have:

  • A copy of your identity document.
  • Copies of your last six payslips.
  • Your employer's details on form UI-19.
  • A service certificate issued by your employer.
  • The adoption order.
  • Proof of your banking details.
  • A statement of amount that you have received from your employer during your adoption leave.
  • A copy of your adopted child's birth certificate.

You must apply for the benefits within six months of the adoption order being issued.

Adoption benefits are paid by cheque through the post. A form will accompany the payment. This form must be filled in and sent back to the claims officer at the Labour Office.


Claiming death benefits

The husband or wife of the deceased worker and any minor children of the worker can claim death benefits from the UIF.

You must apply for these benefits within six months of the death of the worker.

If you were the husband or wife of the deceased worker, you need to go to the Labour Office. You will need to have:

  • Your identity document.
  • Copies of the deceased's last six payslips.
  • The employer's details on form UI-19.
  • A certified copy of the death certificate.
  • A certified copy of your marriage certificate.
  • A service certificate from the employer.
  • Proof of your banking details.

If you are the child of the deceased worker, you can claim by completing Form UF127 and submitting it at the Labour Office. You will need:

  • A copy of your identity document.
  • Copies of the last six payslips of the deceased.
  • Information supplied by the employer on form UI-19.
  • A service certificate from the employer.
  • A certificate copy of your (the child's) birth certificate.
  • Proof of your banking details.
  • A certified copy of the death certificate.
  • Proof of guardianship.
  • Proof that you (the child) are a learner who was dependent on the deceased.

The Labour Office will give you Form UF128, which needs to be filled in by the deceased's last employer and then submitted at the Labour Office.

The death benefit is the amount that the worker could have claimed if they were unemployed. This is paid out in one payment.


For more information:

Provided by:
Government Body: (The Government of South Africa)
The content on this page was last updated on 20 September 2018