Unemployment Guide & Appeal Information

Unemployment insurance is paid out only to individuals who meet certain eligibility requirements, usually in regard to their previous employment.

In some situations, an individual’s application for unemployment insurance can be denied, or it can be determined that the amount of unemployment insurance paid out to the beneficiary was more than he or she was entitled to.

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In these situations, an appeal can be made. For more information on appeals, continue reading the sections below.

Learn About Unemployment Insurance Benefits

Unemployment benefits are issued by the Federal-State Unemployment Insurance Program to workers who are currently unemployed and meet certain eligibility requirements as determined by the state law.

The benefits administered have the purpose of providing temporary monetary assistance to unemployed beneficiaries during the time it takes for them to regain employment. In order to qualify and receive unemployment benefits, it is important that the worker became unemployed through no fault of his or her own.

How Unemployment Works

Each state administers its own unemployment benefits program separate from the programs in other states. However, each state must follow the guidelines established by the federal law.

In general, the benefit amounts, length of time benefits are available and eligibility requirements vary slightly in each state and by each applicant. What is often uniform about unemployment benefits across states is the need for applicants to meet the standard of being under employed or unemployed entirely.

Learn How to Qualify and Apply for Unemployment Insurance

In order to be eligible for unemployment benefits, the applicant must meet certain eligibility requirements. For example, most states require that applicants have worked for a certain period, and/or have earned a certain amount of wages.

Additionally, the applicant must be determined to be unemployed through no fault of his or her own.

Anyone interested in applying for unemployment insurance benefits must contact his or her state unemployment insurance agency as soon as he or she becomes unemployed.

The applicant must be prepared to provide certain information including the name and address of previous employers in addition to the dates worked for the employers and the reasons for no longer being employed. In most cases, the applicant can file a claim either online or over the phone, and the claim must be filed in the state where he or she was previously employed.

It is crucial that applicants provide only truthful information to the unemployment agency throughout the application process. Any information found to be untrue can cause the application to be denied or may result in an overpayment that must be repaid in full to the unemployment agency.

Reasons for Unemployment Compensation Denials

After an unemployment insurance benefits application has been filed, a decision will be made regarding the case. The applicant will receive notice of the decision via mail. An applicant may be denied the ability to receive unemployment insurance benefits for a number of different reasons. These reasons include:

  • Leaving work without a good cause.
  • Benefit payments will only be paid in certain situations where an applicant has willingly quit.
  • Being fired for work-related misconduct or misbehavior.
  • Not being available for work or being unable to hold a job.
  • Benefit payments will only be paid to individuals who are able to accept employment.
  • Purposefully making inaccurate statements in the unemployment benefits application in order to receive benefit payments.

Reasons for Overpayment

An overpayment of unemployment insurance may be made for a few different reasons. For example, an overpayment may occur if a request for unemployment benefits is accepted, but shortly afterwards an appeal is made by a former employer that causes the request for benefits to be denied. If a payment was made to the worker while an employer appeal is pending, and then the benefits are denied, the worker must pay back all benefits to the agency.

Additionally, an overpayment may be made if incorrect information is provided to the unemployment agency by the applicant. Any false information provided to the state constitutes fraud and requires the applicant to pay back all of the benefits that were paid in error.

Also, beneficiaries who fail to update the state on any changes in information, including the acceptance of new employment, may cause an overpayment to be made.

Learn About Unemployment Insurance Appeals

When an individual feels that the decision made regarding whether or not he or she will receive unemployment benefits is unfair or wrong, he or she has the right to file an appeal in an attempt to alter that decision.

An appeal is filed generally for one of the following reasons:

  1. When an individual disagrees with the agency’s decision to not pay unemployment compensation.
  2. When an individual disagrees with the agency’s determination that an overpayment of benefits was made to him or her.

How to File an Appeal

The appeal process varies from state-to-state, so it is very important than anyone interested in filing an appeal for their unemployment insurance researches the laws in their state beforehand.

Also, it is important to note that in most states there is a time frame that the appeal must be made in for it to be considered.

Most states provide several different ways to file an appeal, including over the phone, in writing or in-person at an agency office or online. Certain appeal paperwork must be completed, and the appeal generally requires certain personal information including name, social security number and employer’s name in addition to an explanation for why the appeal is being made. After the appeal has been received, it will be reviewed, and a written decision will be mailed to the worker.

If unemployment insurance has been denied on behalf of the previous employer, and an appeal is filed against that decision, a hearing will be held. The office of appeals in the state where the appeal has been made will schedule a time and place for the hearing to be held.

A judge will conduct the hearing in order to provide both the claimant (the individual who filed the appeal) and the employers the ability to present evidence and argue their case. After the hearing has concluded, the judge will issue a written decision regarding the appeal to all participating individuals.

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