Raise an Issue: Contest an Applicant’s Eligibility and Charges
[Background image: Picture of Carly, a Customer Service Representative]
Hi, I’m Carly, a Customer Service Representative for the Minnesota Unemployment Insurance Program.
In this video, I’ll explain what it means to Raise an Issue, when you should Raise an Issue, and how to Raise an Issue.
Every year, well over 200,000 individuals apply for unemployment benefits. Most are eligible, some are not. It’s important that we pay eligible applicants quickly, but it’s equally important that we do not pay applicants who are not eligible.
When an applicant initially applies for benefits, and each week they request a payment, we ask them a series of questions that helps us identify issues that may result in them being found ineligible.
When an applicant's answers to our questions raise an issue, we may send you a Request for Information to get your side of the story. Sometimes applicants forget to tell us about things or maybe you have a very different version of why someone left your employment than the former employee. When that happens, it may be necessary for YOU to RAISE AN ISSUE rather than the applicant.
Whether it’s you or the applicant raising issues is how we know to investigate an applicant’s eligibility for benefits. Sometimes employers confuse raising an issue with appealing.
It’s understandable, and we know that “raising an issue” sounds like jargon. Think of “raising an issue” as asking us to investigate an applicant’s eligibility.
Appealing, on the other hand, is the formal process of requesting that a full hearing be held after an applicant has been found eligible or ineligible.
As mentioned before, applicants usually raise issues themselves and you as an employer respond to a request for information that we send you.
When employers DO raise issues, it generally occurs because they have been notified that a former employee has applied for benefits.
When your former employee applies for Unemployment Insurance Benefits, we are required by law to mail you a Determination of Benefit Account or a Notice of Benefit Account letter.
We also make these available to you in your online account. You can’t raise an issue before an applicant applies for benefits, but you can raise an issue at any time afterward.
The notification lists the wages you reported to us in your Quarterly Wage Detail Report for this applicant. These wages are used to calculate the amount of their unemployment benefits, and the effect on your account if benefits are paid.
Any benefits paid to this applicant will be charged to your account and may affect your total cost for unemployment insurance. If the only problem is that the reported wages are not correct, do not raise an issue, just log in to your online account and correct the wages as an adjustment under Tax and Wage Detail Reporting. Next let’s look at some examples of when to raise an issue.
You should raise an issue if your former employee is: separated for a reason other than layoff, still working full or part-time for you or someone else, currently working for you part-time and also worked a full time job that recently ended, receiving or has applied for a pension, separation pay, or workers’ compensation, not available for work, not authorized to work, or has refused work.
When you raise an issue and provide details, you help us determine if the applicant should be eligible for benefits. This may also limit benefits charged to your employer account. Next we’ll talk about how to Raise an Issue.
You can raise an issue online through your employer account, by fax, or by mail. Raising an issue online is fast and easy, and you’ll get immediate confirmation that your information was received.
It’s best to raise an issue within 10 days of the date on the Determination or Notice of Benefit Account letter. This may help you to avoid charges to your account.
You should be prepared to provide details about why you are raising an issue and what happened. Gather any information that you have, such as the former employee’s personnel file, payroll records, timecards, or other documentation you will need depending on the type of issue you intend to raise. Now let’s talk about how to raise an issue online.
First login to your account, start at www.uimn.org and click Employers & Agents. On the Employer page, under Log in to my Account, click Employers. This will take you to the employer login page.
After you’ve successfully logged in to your account, click Determinations and Issue Summary, this will take you to the Applicants for Review page.
If the applicant you want to raise the issue for is listed under Applicants for Review, click their Social Security number, this will take you to the Action Items page.
If the applicant is not listed, or you have a large number of employees and want to search for the applicant, then use the Custom Search option. You can search by Social Security number or name, and then follow the raise an issue instructions until you’re at the page with the Raise an Issue button. We’ll explain how to proceed from that page shortly. Next we’ll look at the Action Items page.
It’s important to verify that the type of issue you want to raise is not already listed under Issue Type. If it is listed, do NOT raise the issue again. You may see many items in the list, but to raise an issue you must click one of following types of Action Items: Determination of Benefit Account, Amended Determination of Benefit Account, Notice of Benefit Account, or Reactivation Notice. This will take you to the page where you can raise an issue.
This page summarizes the applicant’s benefit account information. To raise an issue, click the Raise an Issue button near the bottom of the page.
First, verify that the type of issue you want to raise is not already listed under the Previously Identified Issues section. For example, if you want to raise an issue because the applicant was discharged, just verify that issue type is NOT listed.
If the issue type is listed, do not raise the issue again. Next, enter the date that the applicant last worked for you, and then review each section and check the boxes that best describe the reasons why you are raising this issue.
When you have completed your entries, click Next. Now I’ll discuss the Request for Information page where we ask questions about the details related to this issue.
This page is where we ask for details of why you are raising the issue and what happened. This is your chance to tell us your side of the story so we can make an accurate determination of the applicant’s eligibility, and if your account should be charged.
If you have documents you want to send that support your answers, then check the box “I will be sending in documents that support my answers.” You will need to include a cover sheet that is mailed to you and you can also print it on the next page.
It is important to let you know the system only allows you 30 minutes to submit the Request for Information before it times out – there is no save function or time out warning. So be sure to complete it within that time or you’ll need to start over.
The raise an issue process is complete after you click Next, and the message “The issue was successfully raised” is displayed. If you checked the box that you will send documents to support your answers, then click the Document Cover Sheet link to view and print the cover sheet. Next we’ll discuss how you can raise an issue by fax or mail.
To raise an issue by fax or mail send the front page of the Determination or Notice of Benefit Account letter that you received when your former employee applied for Unemployment Insurance benefits, and be sure to clearly state on this page that you are raising an issue. Include a statement that explains why you are raising the issue. Send your request to the fax number or address provided in the Determination or Notice of Benefit Account letter.
This information is also provided at the end of this video. If we need more information specific to the issue, we will mail you a Request for Information that will also be available in your online account under the section Determination and Issue Summary.
Now, let’s talk about what happens next!
After an issue is raised: We review all information received from you and all other parties. A determination is made based on Minnesota Law. The determination is mailed to you and the applicant, and is also available in your online account.
If you disagree with the determination, you have the right to file an appeal within 20 days from the date on the determination letter. The determination letter provides instructions on how to file an appeal, or you can visit www.uimn.org for more information.
I hope you’ve found this video helpful in understanding when and how you can raise an issue.
Remember raise an issue if you question a former employee’s eligibility to receive unemployment benefits, or if you question whether your account should be charged if benefits are paid.
Do not raise an issue if the only problem is that the reported wages are not correct, just log in to your online account and correct the wages as an adjustment under Tax and Wage Detail Reporting.
Thank you for taking the time to watch this video. For more detailed instructions, click the Raise an Issue link or call Customer Service, we’ll be happy to assist you.
[Screen text: If you have any questions...Call Customer Service: 651-296-6141, press 4 to speak to a representative | Fax: 651-205-4007 | Mail: UI Customer Service, P.O. Box 4629, St Paul, MN 55101-4629 | Links for more information: Log in to My Account, Employer User Guide, Raise an Issue, Video Library]