Category Archives: Unemployment

Texas Unemployment Fund Nearly Broke

Officials with the Texas Workforce Commission have announced that as many as 82,000 recipients of unemployment benefits in the state will face delays in getting their money as the agency scrambles to borrow $634 million from the federal government.

Unemployed Texans who were eligible for automatic 13-week extension soon will not see the benefits until the state can work out computer issues and comply with federal regulations. Officials are assuring those who are eligible that the benefits will be retroactive to when they should have been renewed.

Texas Democratic Party Chairman Boyd Ritchie criticized Governor Rick Perry for turning down $556 million in federal stimulus funds to expand the state’s unemployment benefits.

“Unfortunately, hardworking Texas taxpayers and struggling businesses will shoulder the burden of Rick Perry’s failure to do the right thing for our state and accept the unemployment insurance funds,” Richie said.

Perry said that borrowing from the federal government to shore up unemployment trust funds is routine and that expanding the state’s unemployment system would have been a burden on businesses for years to come.

Applying For Unemployment In Illinois

The fastest and quickest way to apply for unemployment compensation in Illinois is to report to your nearest IDES office the day after your termination. Your employer should have provided you with the IDES brochure, “What Every Worker Should Know About Unemployment Insurance”, when you were terminated. This brochure lists the address of some of the IDES offices. You can also call the IDES 800 number or visit their website on the internet.

You will be asked to fill out several detailed forms at the IDES office. There are several things that you will need to bring with you to the IDES office. Some of these things include:

  • Your social security card
  • A record of money that you have earned from odd jobs, etc. or other income that you have while you have been unemployed (if any)
  • Your work history that includes names, addresses and telephone numbers, along with knowing the number of days that you worked for each employer
  • A record of companies and/or people that you have contacted about work (if any)
  • The names and birthdates of your children, as well as their social security numbers and that of your spouse
  • The employment status of your spouse.

You will need to know details about your earnings, work history and your family’s employment status and social security numbers. It is imperative that you tell the truth when reporting your current status and when filing. The state of Illinois imposes jail time and up to a $500 fine for fraudulently obtaining or attempting to obtain unemployment compensation. This is for each offense.

You lose your job and file a claim at your local Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) office. You receive a written notice by mail that your application for unemployment compensation benefits has been denied.

What options do you have? What can you do? Can you appeal this denial?

You have thirty days from the date on the decision to send in a Notice of Appeal. You will then be granted a hearing before an IDES administrative law judge, called a Referee. The Referee, an attorney at law, will determine whether unemployment insurance benefits are payable to you.

If the Referee upholds your denial of benefits, you have 30 days to appeal to the Board of Review. If the Board of Review upholds your denial, you have 35 days to file an Administrative Review Action in Circuit Court.

Unemployment Compensation in California

The topic of unemployment compensation in California is important to you if you work and live in California, and you have been unfairly terminated, laid off or forced to quit. You or a friend or loved one may be in the middle of a dispute with their employer over unemployment compensation benefits at the present time.

You should remember what unemployment insurance is. Unemployment Insurance (UI) is an employer-paid insurance program that provides benefits to you if you become unemployed through no fault of your own. Unemployment compensation is temporary financial help if you qualify. This is given while you look for work. The amount is based on your previous earnings. Reimbursements and employer taxes support the Unemployment Trust Fund. Employers cannot deduct any money from your employee paychecks to pay for this program.

Unemployment compensation was begun to help able-bodied workers provide a minimal livelihood who had become involuntarily unemployed. It was designed to last until they were once again employed. Wisconsin signed the first unemployment compensation law in 1932.

The Social Security Act of 1935 contained national unemployment compensation provisions, along with other welfare programs. This was the first national unemployment compensation law. Since then, the act has been amended many times. More than 96% of all workers were covered by unemployment insurance by 1994. All of the states have their own unemployment insurance laws. Each state operates its own unemployment compensation program.

California was the fifth state to enact unemployment insurance laws. The California Legislature, in anticipation of what the United States Congress would do before the end of 1935, passed the Unemployment Reserves Act of 1935 (now called the California Unemployment Insurance Code) almost two months before Congress passed the Social Security Act of 1935. The payroll tax became effective January l, 1936. The safety net of unemployment insurance benefit payments became effective in California in 1938.

The California Department of Industrial Relations was established to improve working conditions for California’s wage earners, and to advance opportunities for profitable employment in the state. This agency oversees matters regarding labor and employment in California. The Division of Workers’ Compensation, which is a part of the Department of Industrial Relations, has the responsibility of administering the California workers’ compensation system.

The California Employment Development Department (EDD) administers the unemployment insurance program in California. It does so in accordance with Federal guidelines.

California, like other states, looks at unemployment compensation as a temporary help to workers who are searching for work, and who are able to work. You should bear in mind that it is for workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own.

The value of unemployment benefits in California is different from that of other states. The reason for this is because each state unemployment office applies its own limits and formulas when calculating the amount of unemployment compensation. The duration of unemployment benefits in California may also differ from that of other states.

Unemployment compensation in California may not cover those who are considered to be unemployed workers in an ordinary manner. If you quit your job or resign from your job voluntarily without good cause, you may also not be entitled to the benefits under the unemployment compensation program. You are also not entitled to unemployment compensation benefits if you have been fired from your job for misconduct or refused to carry out your job without sufficient cause.

In order to receive unemployment compensation benefits, generally, three things must be true. You have to be unemployed through no fault of your own, able to work and readily available for suitable work.

There are cases where resignation or quitting your job will not disqualify you from unemployment compensation benefits. For example, if you left your job because of your employer’s retaliation against you for whistle blowing against company executives, employer’s harassment, discrimination, violence or threat, these are things that will not disqualify you from receiving unemployment compensation benefits.

Aside from the things mentioned above, the California law provides the following basic requirements for collecting unemployment payments. These are:

  • You must have been employed for a period of time called the “base period”.
  • You have to be determined to be unemployed through no fault of your own as this
    is defined by California law.
  • You have to respond to questions concerning your continued eligibility and file ongoing claims. You also have to report any earnings from work and any refusal of work or during job any claim period.
  • You have to meet any other unemployment eligibility requirements of California law.

In addition to these requirements, it is extremely important for you to file a claim and register for work at your local state employment office. It is also good if you continue to report to that office as you are directed.

After you file a claim for unemployment compensation in California there is a waiting period as you would suspect. If your local Employment Development Department (EDD) denies your claim, you have an opportunity to appeal that decision before the Administrative Judge of the Board of Appeal.

At the hearing, you will have an opportunity to explain to the judge why you should be entitled to unemployment benefits. Your employer will try to show why the decision by the Employment Development Department should be upheld.

This hearing is like a trial in court. Both parties have the opportunity to make opening statements, present relevant evidence (documents) , as well as direct and cross examine their own as well the opposing witnesses.

As you can see, if you or a friend or loved one is in a dispute and/or appealing a ruling, it is a good thing to have an attorney representing you. The important thing is to choose the right lawyer.

Family attorneys and lawyers with a general law practice are good. But, are they the right ones for this matter.

An experienced California employment attorney can make compelling arguments based on the law and past case law. He or she can examine witnesses and get information in a way that you probably cannot. Your California employment attorney’s words will also carry more weight with most judges.

This is what employment attorneys do. They specialize in cases dealing with employment issues like unemployment compensation. These are the kind of cases they work with each and every day.

Unemployment Compensation in Texas

The issue of unemployment compensation in Texas is important to you if you live and work in Texas, and you have been laid off, unfairly terminated or forced to quit. You or a friend or loved one may be having trouble getting the unemployment compensation benefits that you believe you are entitled to, right now. 

It is important that you know and understand what unemployment insurance is. Unemployment Insurance (UI) is an employer-paid insurance program that helps workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own. It provides temporary financial help to qualified individuals while they are looking for other work. The amount is based on your previous earnings. Employer taxes and reimbursements support the Unemployment Trust Fund. Employers are not allowed to deduct any money from your employee paychecks to pay for this program. 

Unemployment compensation came about to help able-bodied workers who had become involuntarily unemployed to provide a minimal livelihood until they were once again employed. The first unemployment compensation law was signed in Wisconsin, in 1932. 

The first national unemployment compensation law came, along with other welfare programs, in the Social Security Act of 1935. This act has been amended many times since then. By 1994, more than 96% of all workers were covered by unemployment insurance. Each state in the United States has its own unemployment insurance law. Each state operates its own unemployment compensation program.   

In October, 1936, the Texas legislature passed the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act. This act accepted the unemployment insurance provisions of the Social Security Act of 1935 and established the Texas Unemployment Compensation Commission. Taxes on covered employers payrolls began on January 1, 1936, and payments to covered eligible workers were effective January 1, 1938. 

The Texas Unemployment Compensation Act has been amended several times since 1936. The last time it was amended was in 2008. 

The Texas Workforce Commission administers the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act, which is a part of the Texas Labor Code. It does so in accordance with federal unemployment compensation guidelines. 

It is important for you to realize that Texas is like many other states in that it views unemployment compensation as a temporary help to workers who are able to work, and who are searching for work. It is also well to remember that it is for workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own. 

In order to receive unemployment compensation in Texas, there are qualifying requirements that you must meet in three areas. These areas are your past wages, job separation and ongoing availability and work search. You have to meet all of the requirements to receive benefits. 

The first area of eligibility is your past wages. Your have to have received enough wages to meet the requirements in order to establish a payable claim. The wages that have been paid to you during a recent 12 month period is called your base period. This amount is used to calculate your benefit amounts. Your weekly benefit amount will be between $58 and $392 depending upon the wages you earned during your base period. 

In order to have a payable claim, Texas law requires three things. These are: 

  • You have wages in at least two of the four base period calendar quarters being used
  • Your total base period wages are at least 37 times your weekly benefit amount
  • If you qualified for benefits on a prior claim, you must have earned 6 times your new weekly benefit amount since that time. 

The second area of eligibility requirement is your separation from your last work. You must be unemployed or partially unemployed through no fault of your own to receive benefits. If you quit your job, you should be prepared to present evidence that you tried to correct the problem before you quit. 

There are several reasons that qualify. Some examples of qualifying reasons are: 

  •          You were laid off due to lack of work.
  •          You were fired without work-related misconduct.
  •          You are still working but your employer has reduced your hours.
  •          You quit your job to protect yourself from stalking or family violence.
  •          You quit your job for a good well-documented medical or work-related reason. 

Falling under this heading are if you quit your job because of things like harassment, violence or discrimination, and your employer did not take any steps to correct these things. 

The third area of eligibility is the ongoing availability and work search requirements. During each week that you claim benefits, you have to: 

  • Be physically able to work
  • Be available for full-time work
  • Make an active search for full-time work
  • Be registered for work search online at www.texasworkforce.org
  • Apply for and accept suitable work
  • Call or report to a Texas Workforce Commission center as you are instructed. 

If you apply for unemployment compensation in Texas and are denied, you are allowed to appeal this decision. The first step in the appeals process is to make a request for a hearing. You have to file your signed appeal in writing with the Appeals Department in Austin.

There are three appeal levels in Texas. The first is an appeal to the Appeal Tribunal. The second step is an appeal to the Texas Workforce Commission. The third step is an appeal to a civil court. 

Most of the time this process is one in which you will not need a legal professional. However, if your employer disputes your unemployment claim, it can be a stressful situation in which you may need an attorney to help you get the unemployment benefits that you are entitled to. 

If this is the case with you or a friend or loved one, you may wonder how to choose the right attorney. Family attorneys and those who have a general law practice are excellent, but are they the right ones for a situation dealing with unemployment benefits?

You or your friend or loved one is probably going to need the help of an attorney who knows and specializes in employment law in Texas. You will probably need the representation of an employment attorney.

This is what employment attorneys do. They specialize in cases dealing with employment issues like unemployment compensation. These are the kind of cases they work with each and every day.

Unemployment Compensation in New York

Unemployment compensation in New York will be of interest to you if you live and work in New York. This is especially true if you have been forced to quit, unfairly terminated or laid off. You or a friend or loved one may be in a dispute over unemployment compensation benefits at the present time. 

In order to understand unemployment compensation, you need to remember what unemployment insurance is. Unemployment Insurance (UI) is the employer-paid insurance program that provides benefits to you in the form of unemployment compensation if you become unemployed through no fault of your own. Unemployment compensation is temporary financial help that you have to qualify for. These benefits are paid while you look for work. Your previous earnings determine what your amount will be. The Unemployment Trust Fund is supported by Reimbursements and employer taxes.  No money can be deducted from your paycheck by your Employer to pay for this program. 

The purpose of unemployment compensation is to help able-bodied workers who become involuntarily unemployed to provide a minimal livelihood during this period of time. It is designed to last a worker is back at work. 

Wisconsin signed the first unemployment compensation law in 1932. The Social Security Act of 1935 was the first national law. It contained unemployment compensation provisions, along with other welfare programs. Through the years, the act has been amended many times. By 1994, unemployed insurance coverage applied to more than 96% of all workers. All of the states in the United States have their own unemployment insurance laws that are in accordance with federal guidelines. Each state administers its own unemployment compensation program. 

The State of New York followed suit with the Social Security Act by enacting its unemployment compensation law, also in 1935. The law regarding unemployment compensation in New York has been amended and reformed many, many times since its passage in 1935. 

Issues regarding labor and employment in New York are under the New York State Department of Labor. For example, the issue of health and safety in the workplace is governed by the Division of Safety & Health. The workers’ compensation program is administered by the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board. 

The New York State Department of Labor is also who is over unemployment compensation. Specifically, it is the Unemployment Insurance Division that administers unemployment compensation in New York. 

New York’s view of unemployment compensation is that it is temporary income for eligible workers who become unemployed through no fault of their own. It is for those who are ready, willing and able to work. The New York State Department of Labor and each of the other state’s unemployment offices administer its own unemployment insurance program within Federal guidelines. 

What you receive in unemployment benefits in New York will be different from what you would receive in other states. The reason for this is that each state unemployment office uses its own limits and formulas to calculate the amount of unemployment compensation that you will get. The length of time that you get unemployment benefits in New York may also be different from that of other states. 

In order to qualify to get unemployment compensation in New York, you must meet the eligibility requirements for what is called the “base period”. If you meet the requirements of the base period, it will be used to establish your claim. 

To meet the requirements of the base period, you have to have been paid wages in at least two calendar quarters. You must have been paid at least $1600 in wages in one of those two calendar quarters. You also have to have total wages in your base period that are one and one-half times your high quarter wages. 

Another requirement for receiving unemployment compensation in New York is that you lost your job through no fault of your own. You may be denied benefits if: 

  • You were fired because your employer alleged that you violated a company rule, procedure or policy like absenteeism or insubordination, because of a dispute or disagreement with a co-worker or boss, or you were fired for any other reason.
  • You quit your job.
  • You are unemployed because of a work stoppage in the last 49 days which was conducted in violation of an existing collective bargaining agreement in the place in which you were employed. You may be denied even if you are not actually participating in the strike, but only that you are not working because of the strike in the facility where you worked. 

As mentioned earlier, you must also be willing, able and ready to work in order to get unemployment compensation in New York. You also have to be actively seeking work. 

If you believe that you meet these eligibility requirements for receiving unemployment compensation in New York, you should file for these benefits. You can file for benefits either by phone or online. 

If you application for unemployment compensation benefits is denied, you have the right to file an appeal. The first step in the appeal process in New York is a hearing before an impartial administrative law judge. This judge is under the jurisdiction of the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board. If the administrative law judge denies your appeal, you can appeal the decision with the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board. If the decision of the Appeal Board is not in your favor, you can appeal to the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court, Third Judicial Department, and from there to the New York State Court of Appeals.

If you or a friend or loved one has been denied unemployment compensation in New York, as you can see from the appeal process, you are probably going to need the help of a legal professional in order to get the benefits that you are entitled to. You are probably going to need the help of an employment attorney.

This is what employment attorneys do. They specialize in cases dealing with employment issues like unemployment compensation. These are the kind of cases they work with each and every day. An experienced New York employment attorney will probably be able to help you get your unemployment compensation benefits.

Unemployment On The Rise, Will Benefits Be There

Unemployment rates in all 50 states rose in December, according to a report issued by the U.S. Department of Labor Tuesday.

While numbers are worst in the Midwest and West, areas hit hard by the downturn in housing and manufacturing which continue to decline, the Northeast saw unemployment rise in the financial industry and the Southeast lost the buffer of high energy prices that helped stem job losses there.

The report shows that almost two million jobs in the last four months of 2008, putting strain on state budgets and exhausting state unemployment funds.

The economic stimulus plan working its way through Congress includes money to help states struggling to bridge budget deficeits, but will there be enough money to replenish already depleted unemployment funds?