What is UIF?

The UIF, or Unemployment Insurance Fund, provides financial relief, on a short-term basis, for those who either become unemployed or who can’t work due to illness, maternity or adoption leave.

It is also available to dependents of deceased contributors.

All employees and employers are responsible for contributing to this fund, except for those who:

  1. Are employed for fewer than 24 hours per month.
  2. Those who receive remuneration under a contract as contemplated in section 18(2) of the Skills Development Act, 1998 (Act.97 of 1998).
  3. Anyone employed within the national or provincial spheres of government.
  4. Anyone entering South Africa for the purposes of fulfilling a contracted service, learnership or apprenticeship.
  5. Certain political leaders or members of municipal councils, traditional leaders, etc.

For more information on UIF, visit http://www.labour.gov.za or contact 0860 010 5350.


You can lodge an UIF claim if your employer goes bankrupt, your contract ends, you are fired, you are pregnant, you are medically unfit to work or retrenched. You have to lodge within six months of the date you stopped working. The first step is going to a Department of Labour office to sign an unemployment register. To confirm whether or not you are entitled to claim, please call the labour department.

In order to make a claim of unemployment from the UIF, you need to follow these simple steps:

  1. You will need to bring along the following documents:
    • Your ID or passport
    • The UI-2.8 form for your banking details
    • The UI-19 form that states you’re no longer working, as well as proof of registration as a work-seeker.
  2. You’ll need to locate your closest Labour Centre to hand in the documents.
  3. The staff at the Labour Centre will take you through the processes you need to follow to complete the application. It’s important to remember that the staff may request that you attend training or that you visit the Labour Centre at specific dates and times. If you don’t follow their instructions, you might not be able to make a claim.



In order to claim for maternity from the UIF, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  1. You will need to bring along the following documents:
    • Your ID or passport
    • The UI-2.8 form for your banking details
    • The UI-2.7 form
    • The UI-2.3 application form
    • A medical certificate from your doctor or the baby’s birth certificate
    • The UI-4 follow-up form.
  2. Visit your local Labour Centre. In the event a pregnant woman is too ill to attend the Labour Centre herself, she can send someone else.
  3. The staff members at the Centre will then assist the applicant in completing the rest of the documentation. In some instances, they might request that the pregnant woman visit the doctor again, or even visit the Labour Centre at specific dates and times. It’s important to follow their directions or the application could be denied.

Below are links to UIF documents:



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