Guide to seasonal employment certification

Seasonal status precludes employers from being liable for unemployment benefits directly associated with seasonal work. The Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) will not use the wages earned in a seasonally certified occupation to establish an unemployment claim if all the criteria are met.

Seasonal certification does not relieve any employer from filing quarterly wage and employment detail reports. Contributory employers must still pay quarterly contributions on seasonal wages.

Please note that the seasonal certification application is separate from the Department of Labor Standards application for seasonal business determination for overtime waiver.

Table of Contents

What is seasonal employment?

To be deemed "seasonal employment", one of the following requirements must be met:

  1. The entire business will be in operation for less than 20 weeks in a calendar year, or
  2. The employer has a functionally distinct occupation within the business that is only performed during a period of less than 20 weeks in a calendar year due to the climate or nature of the products or services.

A functionally distinct occupation is one in which the assigned duties or tasks are identifiably distinct from the duties or tasks that are assigned to employees outside the seasonal period.

Additional Resources for What is seasonal employment?

Applying for seasonal certification

An employer seeking seasonal status must submit a written application at least 60 days prior to the beginning of the season, but not more than one year in advance of the season.

Employers must send a completed written application to DUA electronically via email. Learn how to apply for seasonal employment certification.

The certification process is annual. Failure to reapply for seasonal certification each year will result in the use of all wages paid during the base period in the establishment of benefit claims.

Key Actions for Applying for seasonal certification

Additional Resources for Applying for seasonal certification

Maintaining certified seasonal status

As a certified seasonal employer, you must comply with the following reporting and notification requirements:

  • Display the Seasonal Determination and the Certification as a Seasonal Employer (Form 1875) in multiple locations within your business for inspection by employees. These notices will be provided by the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA).
  • Notify employees of their seasonal status in writing prior to hire or immediately following the seasonal determination by DUA
    • All seasonal employees must sign and date the Notice to Employee - Certification as a Seasonal Employer (Form 1876). This form is provided by DUA.
    • Retain the completed Form 1876 for your records. DUA will request a copy of the Form 1876 if an employee files an unemployment claim.

Responsibilities when a claim is filed

Complete all forms from DUA

If you receive a monetary determination, a Lack of Work Notification, or a Request for Wage Information Questionnaire, please complete the form(s) and submit to DUA.

In the comment section, indicate that the position is DUA Certified Seasonal and the wages should not be used to establish a claim.

Submit completed forms to DUA

Email a copy of the completed form or monetary determination to

The subject line of the email should read: FFQ/Certified Seasonal Use of Wages.

DUA will create an issue on the claim

An issue will be created and a customized fact-finding questionnaire will be issued.

If all criteria are met, a determination will be issued and the certified seasonal wages will be removed from the claim.

Financial responsibility

  • Seasonal certification does not relieve any employer from filing quarterly wage and employment detail reports
  • Contributory employers must still pay quarterly contributions on seasonal wages
  • Employers are required to keep an account of and report wages paid to each seasonal worker within the seasonal period