The Department of Employment and Labor also known as the department of labour is South African arm of government responsible for employment matters, including industrial relations, job creation, unemployment insurance, and occupational health and safety. The department plays a significant role in reducing unemployment, poverty, and inequality through a set of policies and programs to improve the country’s economic efficiency and productivity, create employment opportunities, create sound labour relations, and eliminate inequality. It does so by improving workers’ working conditions and quality of life through laid down principles, schemes, and projects for regulating workers’ work conditions.
How to register as a work-seeker
A work seeker is an individual actively seeking employment opportunities and has submitted an application to a potential employer. Unemployed people can register as worker seekers with the department of labour at its nearest centres. This will enable employers to find them if they are looking for candidates for employment. To register as a work-seeker, follow these simple steps:
Step one: Complete the work-seeker registration form
Work-seekers must complete the work-seeker registration form and submit it at the nearest labour centre or office branch. The work seeker registration form is a document that the department of labour provides. The form has to be filled out and signed by the worker seeker. There are provisions to fill out the form electronically as well as on-site. Check the official labour department website.
Step two: Keep your contact details up to date.
Work-seekers must keep contact with the labour centre and let them know as soon as their details change.
Step three: Be prepared for interviews
Keep your CV up to date and handy. It is important that you prepare and make yourself available for interviews with potential employers.
Department of labour vacancies
The department of employment and labour offers opportunities for job seekers to gain employment within the department. To apply for these jobs, applicants must print, complete and submit the Application for Employment form (Z.83) form which can be obtained from any Public Service Department or on the department of employment and labour official website. It is also useful to make sure you meet the job requirements before submitting your applications.
The Department Of Labour Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF)
The Unemployment Insurance Fund is an initiative by the South African government that is focused on helping workers. It does so by saving up a small portion of workers’ monthly earnings or salaries and pays them out when the workers happen to be out of work, sick, or in other situations that they are insured against.
The Unemployment Insurance Fund schemes also pay out workers that have been retrenched or terminated from their employment by no fault of their own. Employees who are laid off due to their faults do not benefit from UIF schemes. The fund offers short terms assistance to the dependents of a worker who has died. However, the unemployment insurance act and unemployment insurance contributions act does not apply to:
- People working 24 hours or less for an employer
- Public servants
- Foreigners working as contract workers
- Workers who receive a government senior’s pension
- Workers who only earn commissions
- Thus, this set of people do not qualify to register for UIF
Every worker registered with the unemployment insurance fund pays 1% of their monthly earnings into the fund. Their employers are responsible for paying another 1% deducted directly from their salaries, making 2% deducted from monthly earnings. The employer is also responsible for ensuring that every worker is registered with the unemployment insurance fund. Employers may register at the UIF by following these simple steps:
Step 1: get your data ready
Get the necessary information, including ID numbers and addresses of your workers, before making the trip to your nearest labour centre.
Step 2: get the necessary forms.
For commercial employees or workers, get the UI-8 forms or the UI-8D. For domestic or private employees, get the UI-19 form. These forms are all available at your nearest department of labour office.
Step 3: fill out forms correctly.
Employers are required to fill the forms for themselves and their employees. The registration form for workers would ask for the employer reference number. In the event that the employer does not have a reference number yet, this part can be left empty. UIF will provide a reference number for you. Also, ensure that all information entered is correct.
Step 4: submit!
Hand in the forms to the labour centre staff.
How to check UIF claims status
Employees registered with the UIF can then check the status of their claims or apply to redeem claims online or in the event of unemployment, death, sickness or even maternity in the nearest labour office. To check the status of your claim online, you can;
- Visit the UIF official website.
- Select the ‘check my status’ option
- Follow the instructions that will appear on your screen.
- Enter the Captcha number
- Proceed to enter your UIF reference number.
- Alternatively, you can check the status of your claim by emailing your name, identification and UIF reference number to online.BCP@labour.gov.za.
- If you may not be able to check the status of your claim online, you can visit the nearest labour office and sign the register. After providing the clerk with your identification and your UIF number, you will be given the status of your UIF claim.
How do I claim UIF?
The procedure to claim UIF varies with the benefit you are trying to claim. Registered members can claim unemployment, illness, maternity, adoption and death benefits. To make a claim, visit your nearest labour office and sign the register. You will be required to sign the register every four weeks to show that you still need to claim the benefits. You must visit the labour office and sign the register on the correct date along with your proof of illness, disease or unemployment. If everything is in order, expect to receive money from the fund within eight weeks of registering. To claim unemployment benefits, for example, you need to have:
- Copy of a 13 digits identification document
- A copy of your last six payslips
- A UI-19 form, provided to you by your employer
- A service certificate from your employer
- Proof of registration as a work-seeker (see how to register above)
- A fully completed registration form
As mentioned above, the requirements may slightly vary depending on your claim. Visit the nearest labour centre in case of any doubts or for more information.
Department of labour forms
There are several forms that serve different purposes and knowing which form to use for which procedure is absolutely important. Below are some of the forms that you may need:
Form U17 – UIF – payment advice
Form UI2.2 – application for illness benefits
Form UI2.4 – application for adoption benefits
Form UI2.5 – application for dependants’ benefits by surviving spouse or partner
Form UI2.6 – application for dependants benefits by child or children of the deceased.
Form UI2.7 – remuneration received by an employee whilst still in employment
Form UI3 – application for payment of illness benefits
Form UI4 – application for the continuation of maternity benefits
Form UI5 – application for the continuation of adoption benefits
Form UI-8 – application for registration as an employee
Form UI-19 – declaration of information of commercial employees and workers employed in households
Form UI 12 – appeal to RAC