Managing Unemployment Claims

By Terri Roeslmeier

September 15, 2010

Have you been using your staffing software to document and manage unemployment claims? Utilizing your software tools to the fullest extent to handle this issue can save you quite a bit of time and money. It all starts with documentation of applicants that have filed for unemployment. Most staffing systems will allow you to set some type of status or other code that can identify applicants that are currently charged to your unemployment. You may have to create a custom status code for this but it is something that you should have if you do contract placements. It is very important to identify these individuals so that if possible they can be offered assignments before other applicants in your database.

Next you need to document all job refusals. When you offer a job to an employee that is on unemployment and they refuse an assignment, clearly document this with detailed notes and a coding system that will allow you to search and identify these quickly and easily. It is not enough to make a notation, you need a way to be able to identify these instances by “refusal code”, date offered and refused, specifics on the job refused (position, company, start date, rate, etc.) and detailed notes on why the applicant refused the job.

Periodically run reports from your system identifying job refusal instances. This will provide you with the opportunity to analyze which applicants charged to your unemployment are repeatedly refusing assignments that they are eligible for. This type of reporting allows you to selectively choose applicants that you feel should no longer be eligible to collect unemployment.

Once you have determined which applicants have unemployment claims that you would like to refute, you should run an unemployment report for each applicant that falls into this category. Providing such reports to your unemployment government agency can eliminate many such claims. Long-term this will significantly reduce your unemployment costs.

Job refusal reporting aids significantly in launching a successful appeal. Employers that present such detail have a high success ratio in fighting unemployment claims. This can be considerable with the high level of claims that may be pending due to economic conditions. Employees that were legitimately put on unemployment initially can be offered jobs due to the better economic climate. Upon their repetitive refusal they may no longer be eligible to collect and should no longer be charged against your firm’s unemployment.

Tagging applicants currently charged to your unemployment and documenting refusals should become a standard process when working with contract assignments. Although this may be especially helpful during today’s economic climate, it can benefit organizations long-term.

This article appeared in the September 2010 staffdigest Magazine.

Terri Roeslmeier is President of Automated Business Designs, Inc., software developer of Ultra-Staff software for the staffing and direct hire industry. Ultra-Staff is a staffing software business solution with components for front office, back office and the web. Terri’s email address is or for more information on Ultra-Staff go to