Tag Archives: Unemployment

Responding to Unemployment Claims

Responding to unemployment claims is crucial to lowering an employer’s unemployment costs.  Even if the claim filed is a layoff or a non-contestable claim, it is still critical that these claims get responded to.  Often, employers do not realize that non-response to claims can cause loss of appeal rights in the future – should the reason for separation change.

It’s important to understand the unique unemployment laws and deadlines associated with different states.  Many businesses operate in more than one state, and in many cases a certain state may have a 10 or 15 day deadline to respond to a claim.  A good baseline rule is to respond to any claim, regardless of the state, within 7 days to ensure compliance among all states.

When it comes down the reason for separation, it is important that documentation is included to help back up an employer’s response.  The state is always looking for write ups, warnings, policies, acknowledgements, and signed resignation letters.  It is hard for employers to win a discharge case without having sufficient documentation to back up their story.

There are many different forms associated with a single unemployment claim that gets filed.  For example, you may receive an initial form from the local office, a relief of charge form, and an additional questionnaire – all for the same claimant!  It’s critical that all these forms are responded to by the deadline listed on the form (many times different forms have different deadlines) along with sufficient documentation to back up the case.

Dunn Corporate Resources gives clients the ability to process unemployment claims all in one centralized dashboard – and all replies are reviewed by our unemployment experts before going back to the state to ensure the highest probability of winning a claim.  For a demo of our online system, contact one of our friendly claims managers – we will be happy to discuss our solutions with you.

NY UI Tax Rates Released

New York Unemployment Tax Rates Released

Attention employers of New York:

The state of New York has released the 2018 unemployment tax rate notices. You should expect to see these notices come in the mail late February to Early March. New York has shifted the tax tables for the 2018 year, creating a favorable rate decrease for employers. In 2017, the state used the Size of Fund Index ‘1.5% but less than 2.0%’. This has now been shifted one column to ‘2.0% but less than 2.5%’. You can find the New York tax tables here  on pages 18-20.

It is important that employers verify all figures on the tax rate notice to ensure accuracy! Employers must also be aware of potential voluntary contributions to lower the tax rate.

For help reviewing your unemployment tax rate notice feel free to contact Dunn Corporate Resources! One of our account managers will gladly assist you.

Unemployment Online

In today’s world everything revolves around technology. Information is transferred over the web in all types of industries. With the ongoing progress being made to streamline work by utilizing online capabilities, one would think that unemployment claims would be processed online rather than by paper claim forms, however the government isn’t as quick as we would like.

There has been a push to create a centralized online unemployment claims processing system which is known as SIDES E-Response for employers, however this can be extremely tedious and cumbersome. To be honest, it is probably easier to just fill out the paper claim form and fax it back to the state.

At Dunn Corporate Resources, we’ve created an online system the allows for ease of processing unemployment information AND the ability to access customized reported for full transparency. Our claims management system gives our clients the absolute easiest way to communicate separations and receive real time updates on unemployment claims.

Simply the easiest and most organized way to respond to claims:

Once a claim is responded to, it goes straight to the claim archives. Clients can access claim archives to see exactly how a claim was responded to, what type of documentation was attached to the claim, and when the claim was sent.

For a comprehensive demo of the full capabilities of the Dunn Corporate Resources online system, feel free to contact us today! One of our experienced reps will be happy to answer any questions that you have.

UI Tax: Lower NJ Tax Rate

How to lower your unemployment tax rate:

 

Two things in life are certain: Death and Taxes. Whether it is income tax, sales tax, property tax, etc. you still have to pay it! The good new is – some taxes are controllable and even minimizable.

Employers are all too familiar with with the effects of taxes on their bottom line profits. Ever wonder if there’s a way to pay less money in taxes? Well, one tax that is CONTROLLABLE is the unemployment tax rate. For employers, it does not matter what state you do business in, you can still reduce your unemployment tax rate – all it takes is some know how.

There are three main areas that employers need to watch in order to control their unemployment tax:

  1. Administration:

Every unemployment claim needs to be fought with the proper legal language that is written in the state laws. Be sure to to specifically identify the final incident that caused the termination and don’t mis-interpret the claimant’s actions for something that they weren’t.

  1. Auditing:

Auditing is arguably the most important aspect in lower an unemployment tax rate. Did you know that each state admits that it pays out an excess amount in unemployment benefits each year? Check out the map here to see how your state stacks up against others. Employers must check to see how much each claimant is supposed to be getting paid out, and then determine if the claimant is actually receiving the proper amount of pay. Here’s the catch: this money has already been paid – the state is just letting you know they paid it. It is your job to check that the state is paying the proper amount of money out of your account!

  1. Education:

You don’t know what you don’t know. And, your employees don’t know what they don’t know. Did you know that you can “buy down” your tax rate to effectively pay taxes at a lower tax bracket? This is call a voluntary contribution. Certain states allow voluntary contributions, while others do not. This is just one example of an opportunity to lower your tax rate without having to do any “work”.

Employers should be proactive in ensuring that their whole organization is on the same page. Managers should understand how the unemployment system works, since often times an unemployment claim will be decided based on a write up or termination letter from a manager. Companies should be following uniform procedures when disciplining employees and issuing write-ups in a logical progression.

 

Dunn Corporate Resources has the economies of scale to help your business achieve the lowest possible unemployment tax rate, while offloading all of the workload! Our award winning computer system is fully integrated with the Federal Government’s SIDES system allowing us to process unemployment claims electronically! Our systems ensure no overpayments are made, and that employers receive all possible credit’s to their unemployment accounts.

Contact us today for a no cost analysis of your unemployment tax account to see what savings are available!  

Tennessee Releases 2017-2018 Tax Rate Notice

Tennessee Releases 2017-2018 Tax Rate Notice

TENNESSEE EMPLOYERS: The state has recently mailed out the unemployment tax rate notice for the taxable year 2017-2018. This year the state is using premium rate table six to assign tax rates to employers.

Are you sure that the numbers on the tax rate notice is correct? Should your tax rate be revised? Are the figures used in the tax rate calculation accurate?

Contact us today to see how Dunn Corporate Resources helps ensure that employers recieve the LOWEST POSSIBLE tax rate. We are happy to offer a no-cost analysis of you unemployment tax account to see what savings may be available!

UI Tip – Document, Document, Document!

Unemployment Tip – Document, Document, Document!

Unemployment claims can be difficult to win, especially if the issue at hand is a discharge.  Each state can be a little different in terms of laws and regulations, however they all require one thing in common: documentation. These days, it isn’t enough just to tell the state that someone was “discharged for violating policy.” In fact, it probably isn’t enough to provide a simple write up either!

States are now requiring that employers provide sufficient documentation to prove that the claimant was fully aware of grounds for discharge and deliberately did not follow the rules. The type of documentation that the state is looking for is:

  • A write up of the final incident signed by the claimant and a witness.
  • Any prior write ups, whether they are related to the final incident or not.
  • A well thought out corrective action plan to help resolve the problem at hand.
  • A copy of the specific policy violated.
  • A signed acknowledgement of the company rules/policy/handbook.

Sometimes it can be tough to get an employee to sign a write up, especially when they don’t agree. So here’s an idea: Have the employee write that they disagree, and then have them sign it. Now there is sufficient evidence that a claimant was warned AND that they acknowledged the warning, even though they didn’t agree with it. This type of backup documentation can go a long way, especially if an unemployment claim gets appealed to a hearing.

Keeping these warnings in a chronological order, along with the policies and acknowledgement will absolutely help win an unemployment claim, not to mention an EEOC or Civil Rights claim should one arise.

For more helpful tips on how to proactively fight unemployment claims, take a look at our blog or contact us today!

New Jersey Tax Rate Notice

New Jersey Releases Unemployment and Disability Tax Rate Notice

On July 28th New Jersey mailed out the tax rate notice for the taxable year 2017-2018. This notice contains the tax rates for both unemployment and disability. The minimum unemployment tax rate is 0.5% and the maximum tax rate is 5.8%. The state is using the same tax tables as the 2016-2017 taxable year. Be sure to check for voluntary contributions as often times employers can benefit from “buying down” their tax rates.

Dunn Corporate Resources is here to help you! If you need help interpreting your tax rate notice, we are offering a no-cost analysis of your unemployment and disability tax accounts to see what savings may be available!

Contact us today, one of our specialists would love to help!

Vermont UI Tax Rate Notices Released!

Vermont Employers: The Vermont Department of Labor has mailed out UI Tax Rate Notices on June 23, 2017. These new rates will be effective for July 1, 2017 as the state of Vermont operates on a fiscal year for unemployment. This means that your new rates will be applied for your quarterly filing due on October 31, 2017. Below is the tax rate schedule for the 2017-2018 period. The schedule being used for this period is Schedule 4. The minimum tax rate is 1.1% and the maximum tax rate is 7.7%.

Tax Rate ClassSchedule 4
01.1
11.2
21.4
31.7
42.0
52.3
62.6
72.9
83.2
93.5
103.8
114.1
124.5
134.9
145.3
155.7
166.1
176.5
186.9
197.3
207.7

Keep in mind that the tax rates are not always correct on these tax rate notices. It is very important that all of the numbers in the tax rate calculation get audited. The state of Vermont has an overpayment rate just under 7% according to the DOL. If charges to your account are not closely monitored, you will see a dramatic increase on your tax rate notice!

For a no-cost analysis of your 2017-2018 tax rate notice, contact an expert at Dunn Corporate Resources. We’re always happy to help!

How do Benefit Charges Work for Employers?

What is a Benefit Charge?

To fully understand the full impact of benefit charges, we must first understand exactly what a benefit charge is. When someone applies for unemployment and then gets deemed eligible to collect unemployment benefits, they are then paid out money. In some cases, the State will even pay out unemployment benefits before a determination is made. The State will make a monetary determination (often times this is stated on a claim form) to determine the maximum dollar value that a claimant can collect. Usually this is based on the amount of money that the claimant has earned within a certain period of time.  Each state has different minimums and maximums for the total amount of benefits that can be paid out to a claimant.

 

Benefit charges against a company?

So where does all of that money being paid out come from? Well, it depends on what kind of employer you are. Certain companies such as non-profits qualify to be reimbursable employers, which means that you pay dollar for dollar when someone collects unemployment against your organization. This will also depend on the state that you operate in.

Generally speaking, most employers are tax rated, meaning that they have an unemployment tax account with the state. Just like every other tax, each employer is assigned a specific tax rate. So the more you pay out in benefits, the higher your tax rate is going to be. Conversely, the less you pay out in benefits, the lower your tax rate will be. 

 

How can I decrease the amount of Benefit Charges to my account?

There are a few ways to do this. The first is to make sure that you are contesting all unemployment claims in an accurate and timely manner. When claims are sent back to the state late, usually the employer will be penalized and will lose the opportunity to protest charges to their account. In order to win an unemployment claim, you must submit accurate information that is both informative and concrete, documentation is a must. By winning a claim, you will effectively block your account from being charged with unemployment benefits. This does not necessarily mean that a claimant will not get paid, it just means that the payment will not be charged to your business.

The next and most effective way to reduce the charges is to audit the charges on the benefit charge statement! This sounds like a no-brainer, however almost no-one does it! There are a few things that need to be audited on these forms – the people that are collecting, and the actual dollar amount that is being collected. The government isn’t anywhere near perfect, and they make mistakes all the time. Check out the overpayment rate in your state. Some states are over 40% in overpayments! This means that if someone is supposed to collect $10,000 from you account, they are actually getting paid $14,000. Your tax rate will skyrocket if these benefit charges are not controlled!

In conclusion, benefit charges are the most important piece of the unemployment puzzle. The amount of money being paid out of your reserve account directly affects the tax rate that you will be issued. Auditing these charges is critical and can be very cumbersome without the right tools to do it.

At Dunn Corporate Resources, our cutting edge computer system, utilizing the federal SIDES System, tracks the exact amount of benefit charges on each claim to ensure that there are no errors. And if someone is being overpaid, we automatically protest those charges and ensure that the money is credited back to the employer’s account. Contact us today if you’d like your UI account reviewed, or would like a demo of our software!

UI SIDES Award Winner

Today, a huge buzz word in the world of unemployment is UI SIDES. It is a centralized federal system for electronic transmission of data, making unemployment claims handling much easier, faster, and more efficient. To learn more about UI SIDES, check out our blog post or visit the ITSC website directly.

At the National Association of State Workforce Agencies Annual Conference, Dunn Corporate Resources was honored with the prestigious award of outstanding claims response through the SIDES system. We make sure that our clients are taken care of, and that nothing slips through the cracks. Our cutting edge computer system ensures that all claims are responded to in a timely and accurate manner. Because of our UI SIDES functionality, our clients enjoy greater lead time on claims as they no longer have to worry about mailing.

Have an interest in seeing what our UI SIDES platform can do for your organization? Contact us today and an expert will be glad to show you the benefits of working with an award winning TPA.

Virginia Revised UI Tax Rate Notices

Are you a Virginia employer that recently received a revised unemployment tax rate notice? Maybe even two revised rate notices? Not sure what to make of it?

Last month the Virginia Employment Commission mailed out a set of revised rate notices. These were mailed out to notify employers that their rates had changed. However, the changes were the result of a state benefit file that was ran in error. The state has recently corrected this matter and has issued a second set of revised tax rates reflecting the original tax rating data.

Mistakes by the State are very common. Employers should be aware that the numbers used in their tax rate calculation are often times incorrect – costing thousands! The DOL has a great list  to show what the error rate is in your state. 

Contact Dunn Corporate Resources today to have your UI account reviewed at no cost!

 

What is UI SIDES?

What is UI SIDES?

UI SIDES, Unemployment Insurance State Information Data Exchange System, is a web based system that allows Third Party Administrators to electronically process information requests from UI agencies. Basically, this means that UI requests can now be centrally processed regardless of the State, and the paperwork is eliminated! In order to qualify for UI SIDES, you must have a very high volume of UI claims and customized programming is necessary.

What is the benefit of SIDES?

Centralization of information! Today we are seeing more and more technology platforms being used, especially in the world of HR. SIDES allows us to easily streamline claims information to and from each State through one centralized electronic transmission. This allows us to provide our clients with cutting edge technology, real time information, and up-to-date reports on exactly where their UI claims stand.

Our clients will get even more lead time on each claim. Think about it, with some deadlines as little as 7 days from the mailing date, plus the time it takes for a claim to get mailed, your time limits are significantly diminished! With UI SIDES, we receive a claim as soon as it’s created by the State. An unemployment service provider without SIDES capabilities is simply at a disadvantage.

Contact us today to see how our SIDES based platform can help reduce your unemployment costs and workload today!

 

For more information about UI SIDES you can visit the ITSC homepage