by Anthony Paradiso and Todd Cohen
When faced with terminating an employee, it’s sometimes a struggle for employers to know the nuances of the Unemployment Insurance (UI) system. As they go through the complicated UI process, they should be sure they don’t make any of these employer mistakes:
MISTAKE #1: Employer is not willing to educate themselves about the UI process because they don’t currently see it as worthwhile.
Not everyone can predict the future success of their employees. At some point, somewhere along the line, mistakes will be made and termination could be necessary. Thinking that your company will never face a UI claim is a huge mistake.
MISTAKE #2: Employer does not complete and return paperwork to the State UI Division on time.
Paperwork for the UI process can be complex to understand, but it’s essential that the employer submit the paperwork to the UI Division on time.
If an employer does not respond timely to requests for information they may:
- Lose the right to appeal eligibility of UI benefits
- Lose the right to a UI claim hearing
- Lose the right to protest benefit charges to the employer’s account
MISTAKE #3: Employer does not show up for their UI hearing.
The denial of UI benefits can happen for many reasons, but one of the main reasons it happens is that the employer doesn’t think it’s worth the effort or time to show up and fight the claim. If the employer does not show, it could mean the employee automatically wins the hearing. Attending the hearing allows the employer to adequately present its side. The “burden of proof” is on the employer in misconduct cases— so it’s up to the employer to prove that the employee should not receive benefits. The person who actually witnessed the misconduct or other action that led to the termination should be present to testify, as well as the person who made the decision to discharge.
Anthony Paradiso is a HRBP/Senior Account Executive with Industrial U.I. Services, who specializes in unemployment insurance cost control. Anthony is very active with SHRM, as the Diversity & Inclusion Co-Chair for the Garden State Council-SHRM (GSC-SHRM), as well as being an active member with NYC SHRM. In 2018, he will be the Director of Diversity & Inclusion with the North Jersey-Rockland SHRM chapter and is the GSC-SHRM Conference Social Media Chair. He is also the Bergen County Human Relations Commissioner and in the Good Neighbours Toastermasters club. Anthony received his BA from Binghamton University and his MS in Human Relations & Business from Amberton University. If you would like to contact Anthony, please email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @allthingzap.
Todd Cohen has an MBA degree from Fordham University. Todd has been with Industrial U.I. since 1991. He is one of the most sought after speakers on the subject of unemployment insurance, having given presentations to clients, trade associations, Administrative Law Judge meetings, etc. He is also an expert on UI taxes and subjects such as calculating tax rates, and making voluntary contributions to lower tax rates in states where such contributions are allowed, thereby allowing Industrial U.I.’s tax rated clients to project future tax rates and budget properly for unemployment cost control. Todd is also actively involved in the hearing process.