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Unemployment Adjudication and Fact Finding Mechanism

Updated : September 15th, 2021

Are you wondering what unemployment adjudication means? You have landed on the right page. Here, we will define adjudication and guide you through other relevant aspects.

Adjudication Meaning

Unemployment adjudication is the legal process of settling the dispute between employee and employer. An unemployed individual applies for weekly unemployment insurance with the state. The state’s labor department begins the process by contacting the last employer to verify the reason for termination of employment. The previous employer can question the claim, and on its basis, the claim may get denied. The claimant may appeal a denied claim. The unemployment adjudication hearing or fact-finding interview allows the applicant to present his case for a contested or denied claim.

Once a valid claim is established, it is then reviewed to determine if you, or a former employer, have provided any information that could come in the way of unemployment payments.

If an issue arises, an adjudicator will review any information that has already been provided. If additional information is needed, they will contact you. An adjudicator may contact you by telephone, e-mail, or mail. If contacted, you must be prompt and sincere in responding at the earliest so that the adjudicator has all information in hand to help him decide.

An issue is a condition or circumstance that could result in the denial of benefits as required by the eligibility and disqualification provisions in the law of a particular state.

Potential Reasons For Denial Of Benefits

An array of issues can potentially result in delay or denial of claims filed by the applicant. These issues are discussed in the following pointers:

  • You were terminated (fired), you quit, or you are on a suspension or leave of absence from your last employer or other recent employers.
  • You are a school employee or working to provide services for an educational institution while under the employment of a private employer holding a contract with a public or non-profit educational institution, and you are not working because you are between terms or on a vacation or holiday.
  • You are unable or unavailable to work or to accept work, or you are not looking for it, or you have failed to report the required contacts with prospective employers for work during a claim week.
  • You are currently attending school or training (subject to exceptions).
  • You are currently self-employed, seasonally employed, or working as a freelancer.
  • You are receiving payments of some kind from a recent employer that includes severance.
  • You refused a suitable job offer, or you rejected a referral.

The reason for separation from your last employer usually determines whether you are eligible to receive unemployment benefits. If you have not earned the minimum amount as prescribed by the state, there can be a roadblock that will stop you from qualifying. The adjudicator is required to investigate your separation(s) by finding out why you left the job(s) in case the claim is contested by either of the parties involved. The adjudicator must determine if you were separated from the employer(s) under conditions that might disqualify you from receiving unemployment compensation.

Upon the completion of the investigation, the adjudicator will issue a written determination(s) that is mailed to you and the employer(s). If there are multiple determinations, all must be favorable to receive benefits. For example, if you worked with three different employers and two determinations are favorable, and one is not, the entire claim will be denied, and payments will not be made until that disqualification has been satisfied.

Note: You will be contacted only if they need any other information apart from the information you provided when you filed your claim. Please note that the adjudication process can take two to six weeks from the time an issue is raised until a determination is made.

Appeal Process

You may request an appeal whenever a determination is not favorable to you. Instructions and procedures for filing an appeal are provided on the website of your state. Assistance is also provided over the phone by the customer service/claims helpline of the labor department.

You must complete the form and submit the appeal online. You may also request an appeal in writing posted to the relevant office in your state.

You must keep yourself updated on the appeals mechanism available in the state labor unemployment laws. If you think your unemployment will last for a longer duration or you believe that the claim filed by you may not easily pass through the regular approval process, acquaint yourself with the basics to face any surprising encounters.

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