Can You Get Unemployment if You Only Work Per Diem in New Hampshire?

Unemployment compensation in New Hampshire is administered by the New Hampshire Department of Employment Security. The program is funded by a combination of payroll taxes on employers and federal funds from the Federal Unemployment Tax, or FUTA. The intent of the program is to provide a baseline, subsistence-level wage to workers who have lost their jobs or experienced a reduction in pay through no fault of their own.

  1. Per Diem Work

    • Per diem work generally means that employees do not work a set schedule, week in and week out, but are hired as needed to meet the needs of the employer. New Hampshire does not exclude per diem employees from qualifying for unemployment benefits.

    Eligibility Criteria

    • To be eligible for unemployment compensation in New Hampshire, you must be physically able to work. Disability benefits come from a different source. You must also be either fully or partially unemployed due to circumstances beyond your control. Your compensation is based on your earnings during the wage base period, which is the first four of the five quarters ending the week before you file your claim. New Hampshire uses the prior four quarters, however, as an alternative base period, if the applicant does not have five quarters of earnings prior to the application for benefits.

    Activity Requirements

    • You must make an active effort to seek employment. You are required to regularly contact potential employers each week about finding work, and you must document your efforts. Unemployment officials may inspect your job search records. You must also take any reasonable offer of employment for which you are reasonably suited.

    Disqualifying Events

    • New Hampshire disqualifies you from unemployment benefits if you were let go at your last job for misconduct, or if you are participating in a labor strike. You may also be disqualified if you do not timely file for benefits. There is no specific language disqualifying per diem employees from unemployment compensation. If you have significant earnings during the wage base period, you are not a seasonal or temporary employee, and your employer paid premiums into the state unemployment compensation system, you should be able to qualify for benefits. Some sales professionals paid entirely by commission cannot qualify for benefits, however.

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