CLAIMANT HANDBOOK YOUR GUIDE TO UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE BENEFITS OFFICE LOCATIONS:

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1 OFFICE LOCATIONS: Wilmington Local Office Department of Labor Division of Unemployment Insurance 4425 North Market Street Fox Valley Wilmington, DE (302) Newark Local Office Department of Labor Division of Unemployment Insurance 225 Corporate Boulevard, Suite 108 Pencader Corporate Center Newark, DE (302) Dover Local Office Department of Labor Division of Unemployment Insurance 1114 South DuPont Highway, Suite 103 Carroll s Plaza Dover, DE (302) Georgetown Local Office Department of Labor Division of Unemployment Insurance Office Circle Unit 205 Georgetown Professional Park Georgetown, DE (302) CLAIMANT HANDBOOK YOUR GUIDE TO UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE BENEFITS HOTLINE NUMBERS: Kent/Sussex County New Castle County (302) WEBSITE OFFICE HOURS 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, Except State Holidays UI Guide Revised May 2014

2 Table of Contents MISSION STATEMENT... 1 INTRODUCTION... 1 TOP 10 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW... 2 FILE YOUR CLAIM USING THE INTERNET... 3 IDENTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS FOR FILING CLAIM IN-PERSON... 4 YOUR INDIVIDUAL ELIGIBILITY... 4 RES, REA AND PROFILING PROGRAMS... 6 ACTIVE WORK SEARCH... 7 ONE WEEK WAITING PERIOD... 8 RETURN TO WORK... 8 REPORT ALL INCOME... 9 QUALITY CONTROL CHILD SUPPORT PAYMENTS REPORT ADDRESS CHANGE CLAIMANT RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES RECOUPMENT OF OVERPAYMENTS SELF-EMPLOYMENT BASE PERIOD QUICK GUIDE TO CALCULATE YOUR BENEFIT YOUR MONETARY ELIGIBILITY FEDERAL CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES MILITARY PERSONNEL WEEKLY BENEFIT CHART FILING FOR YOUR WEEKLY BENEFIT PAYMENT HOW TO FILE FOR YOUR WEEKLY BENEFITS TELEBENEFITS WEBBENEFITS MONETARY DETERMINATION PROTECT YOUR ELIGIBILITY WHILE RECEIVING BENEFITS PAYMENT OF BENEFITS DIRECT DEPOSIT DEBIT CARD APPEAL RIGHTS TAX LIABILITY ON BENEFITS ACRONYMS FREQUENTLY USED BY UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE WORK SEARCH LOG WEEKLY WAGES/EARNINGS CALENDAR INFORMATIONAL VIDEOS... 35

3 NOTES

4 MISSION STATEMENT The mission of the Delaware Division of Unemployment Insurance (the Division ) is threefold: (1) to assist in the promotion of statewide economic stability and vitality by providing temporary, partial income maintenance to workers who become unemployed through no fault of their own and by making referrals of unemployed workers to re-employment services; (2) to ensure adequate funding for the payment of unemployment insurance benefits through the collection of employer taxes; and (3) to contribute to the development of a qualified workforce by collecting a statewide training tax from employers to provide funds for the training of dislocated workers, school-to-work transition, industrial training, and other training initiatives. INTRODUCTION Unemployment Insurance (UI) is designed to provide benefits to eligible individuals who are unemployed through no fault of their own, and who would be employed if suitable jobs were available. Unlike public welfare, UI is an insurance program and proving a need for assistance is not a prerequisite to its payment. UI is similar to other forms of insurance. In all states, employers pay a tax to cover their workers against involuntary unemployment. Most employers are required to pay this tax. When you work for such an employer, you are in covered employment, and your wages are covered wages. Your unemployment insurance benefit is based upon these wages. Like any other insurance, UI has certain requirements which must be met if you are to receive benefit payments. All unemployment transactions are time sensitive. These individual and monetary requirements are established by statues and regulation and are administered by the Division. This Handbook is designed to explain your rights and responsibilities under the Delaware Unemployment Compensation Law. Its purpose is to provide you with information and should not be considered to have the force of law. This Handbook should answer many of the questions you may have regarding filing a claim for benefits. However, if you have questions not covered in these pages, please call your Unemployment Insurance Local Office (telephone numbers are listed on the front cover). Please Read This Handbook Carefully and Completely 1

5 Top 10 Things You Should Know About the Unemployment Insurance System When Filing Your Claim: 1. Accurately Report the Reason You Are Unemployed. Accurately report your reason for separation from your job when you initially file your claim for benefits. Unemployment Insurance (UI) provides temporary financial assistance to qualified individuals who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own and who continue to meet eligibility requirements of state law. The UI program does not pay benefits to everyone who has lost their job. Keep these top ten key facts in mind when you are filing for UI benefits to ensure accurate and quick payment of benefits. For more information, please visit, or call your local unemployment office. We re here to help. 2. Report Any Wages You are Earning. You must report your GROSS wages for each week you work. Report ALL earnings- including part-time or temporary work. 3. Register with the Division of Employment and Training. You MUST register with the Division of Employment and Training to be eligible to collect UI benefits unless you qualify for a rare exemption. 4. Be Available for Work. In order to collect benefits, you MUST continually verify that you are able, available and willing to accept suitable work or benefits may be denied. 5. Actively Seek Work. You MUST search for work each week or benefits may be denied. 6. Develop an Effective Work Search Plan. Contact the Division of Employment and Training for help with planning an effective work search. 7. Avoid Errors and Ensure Proper Payment of Benefits. To prevent errors that may result in an overpayment, read all of the information provided to you. 8. Do Not Delay-As Soon As You Begin Working Again, Report Your Return to Work. As soon as you begin working, notify the Unemployment Office. Do not wait until you receive your first paycheck. 9. Follow the Rules to Prevent Yourself from Committing FRAUD. Anyone who collects UI benefits is legally responsible for following the rules. Failure to follow the rules can have serious consequences. 10. Know your Responsibilities and Ask for Help. Navigating through the UI system can be confusing. If you have a question, contact the Unemployment Office, we are here to help. 2

6 You can file your regular unemployment insurance (UI) claim one of two ways. By internet at: or in person at one of the local offices FILING YOUR CLAIM USING THE INTERNET The Division offers the option to file your new or reopened claim for UI benefits using the Internet: YOU MAY USE THIS OPTION IF YOU: Are an unemployed Delaware worker Have reduced hours Have only worked in Delaware during the preceding 18 months YOU MAY NOT USE THIS OPTION IF YOU: Are filing a partial claim through use of partial/low slips provided by your employer Are filing against a former military employer Are filing against a former federal civilian employer Are not a US citizen Were employed in another state during the preceding 18 months Are residing outside the United States Are filing for extended benefits such as EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) or EB (Extended Benefits) IF ANY OF THESE EXCEPTIONS APPLY TO YOU, YOU MUST REPORT TO THE NEAREST UI OFFICE TO FILE YOUR CLAIM IN PERSON. WHEN YOU REPORT TO THE NEAREST UI OFFICE MAKE SURE TO BRING THE PROPER FORMS OF IDENTIFICATION REQUIRED AS LISTED ON THE NEXT PAGE. WHAT INFORMATION WILL YOU NEED TO HAVE AVAILABLE TO FILE YOUR INTERNET CLAIM? Your social security number The names, addresses and phone numbers of all your employers over the last 18 months The name and local number of your union hall, if applicable. A telephone number where you can be reached Your state issued driver s license or a state motor vehicle agency issued identification card YOU GATHERED ALL YOUR INFORMATION, HOW DO YOU GET STARTED? Log onto the Department of Labor website at Select File a New or Reopened Claim Online under Services on the left side of your computer screen Ensure you read all information carefully, then check to agree, as applicable, then click on Start My Claim Now HOW WILL YOU KNOW YOUR CLAIM WAS SUCCESSFULLY PROCESSED? You will receive a confirmation number that is used to track your claim If you do not receive a confirmation number, your claim HAS NOT been processed Print the confirmation screen for your records or record your confirmation number as you may need to provide this number if you have any questions concerning your claim ** Please read and follow all instructions when filing your claim online. Pay close attention to ALL statements that you are required to agree to. ** 3

7 INDENTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS FOR FILING UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE BENEFITS IN PERSON ONE OF THE BELOW COMBINATIONS OF IDENTIFICATION DOCUMENTS MUST BE PROVIDED AT THE TIME YOU FILE A CLAIM FOR UI BENEFITS IN PERSON: Social Security (SS) Card & Driver s License (by federal law, it can be a valid license from any state) SS Card & State Issued Picture ID (by federal law, it can be a valid picture ID from any state) SS Card and Passport SS Card and Military ID Driver s License or Passport, and any official document with full SSN indicated State Issued Picture ID or Passport and any official document with full SSN indicated ***** Any official document with full SSN indicated includes, but is not limited to a Form W-2 or a paystub. ***** If any of the documents that are swiped through the document authenticator fail, your claim will be taken, but pended until such a time as you produce another acceptable document that passes the swipe test. For example, if you provide a Social Security card and a driver s license, but the drivers' license fails the swipe test, then you will be required to provide a state issued picture ID, a passport, or a military ID that passes the swipe test. You must return within three (3) business days to protect your claim date. After three (3) business days the pending claim is cancelled and you must begin again. YOUR INDIVIDUAL ELIGIBILITY IMPORTANT The effective date of your unemployment claim is the Sunday of the week in which you file your claim. Therefore, you should file your claim as soon as possible after becoming unemployed. To be eligible for UI you must: BE UNEMPLOYED THROUGH NO FAULT OF YOUR OWN You must be partially or totally out of work through no fault of your own. BE ABLE AND AVAILABLE FOR WORK You must be able to work and available for work. However, if you become sick or disabled after you have filed your UI claim and are already collecting, you may continue to draw benefits unless you refuse a suitable job or work is available to you. If you claim benefits while sick or disabled, you must submit a doctor s certificate and meet all other requirements of the program. BE ACTIVELY SEEKING WORK You must be actively seeking work. The fact that you have registered for job search assistance at a public employment office is not enough. You should be actively seeking work and record your new weekly contacts on the work search log provided in the back of this guide. Your work search log should be verifiable and may be audited at any time. 4

8 YOUR INDIVIDUAL ELIGIBILITY (CONT D) SEPARATION ISSUES If there are any eligibility issues, such as the reason for separation from work, benefits will not be paid until the issue is resolved. A questionnaire pertaining to your separation will be mailed to you if you file online. You are required to complete the questionnaire and return it to the Division within 10 days of the mailing date. If you file in person, you are required to complete the questionnaire at the time of filing. You must continue to call TeleBenefits or use the internet WebBenefits to properly file for your weekly benefits until the issue is resolved. If you are determined to be eligible for the receipt of benefits, only those weeks which you properly filed for as required and are otherwise eligible for will be paid to you. YOU MAY BE DENIED BENEFITS If you are unable to work or are unavailable for work; If you have failed to actively seek work; If you are not separated from your employer; If you quit your job voluntarily without good cause attributable to your work; If you are discharged from your job for just cause in connection with your work such as lateness, unexcused absences, or violation of company rules; If you are enrolled in an educational program that limits your availability for work; If you are unemployed by reason of commitment to any penal institution; If you refuse to accept a job offer for which you are reasonably fitted and which pays the general rate for that type of work; If you put undue restrictions on the type of work, the number of hours or amount of pay that you are willing to accept; If you are unemployed due to a labor dispute; If you are a school employee between academic years; If you fail to participate in reemployment services; If you do not respond to an inquiry from any unit within the Division. If you fail to report to your local office as required; or If you do not call the information Hotline (TeleBenefits) or do not use the internet (WebBenefits) to properly file for your weekly UI benefit payment as required. 5

9 YOUR INDIVIDUAL ELIGIBILITY (CONT D) REGISTER AND PARTICIPATE IN REQUIRED SERVICES WITH THE DIVISION OF EMPLOYMENT AND TRAINING If you are required to register with the Division of Employment and Training (DET), you must do so within three (3) business days of filing your claim and you must keep this registration active while collecting UI benefits. Some of the different programs that DET administer are: Reemployment Services (RES) Program The Reemployment Services (RES) Program is an initiative designed to provide intensive career center services to UI claimants receiving UI benefits. Once a claimant is selected, DET sends a letter to the claimant advising them report for the RES appointment. If the claimant misses the RES appointment they will be rescheduled and given another opportunity to use the services offered. However, if the claimant selected misses more than one appointment they must complete 10 hours class time with DET in order to reschedule. A claimant can be denied UI benefits for any missed RES appointments. Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) Program The Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) Program is an initiative set up to help claimants collecting UI benefits return to work faster. As part of the REA process, a validation of the claimant s work search activities is also conducted. DET provides claimants the use of available resources to look for work, and also verifies the information listed on their work search logs. A claimant can be denied UI benefits for any missed REA sessions. Profiling Program Changes in technology and international trade have caused changes in the U.S. economy and, consequently, changes in the labor market. Workers who held jobs in a plant that has closed, or who possess skills that are no longer in demand may find themselves permanently separated from their employers with no similar jobs available. The Profiling Program was designed to minimize the effects of these trends in the workforce and help individuals obtain gainful employment. Public Law provides that all states must "profile" UI claimants for job search assistance. All UI claimants must be profiled using information obtained when filing for benefits. Using information regarding a claimant's job history, the Division determines whether he/she qualifies for program participation. A random selection process is then used on those who qualify to determine who will participate in the "Profiling Program. If you are selected, participation is mandatory. The Profiling Program is being jointly administered by the Division and DET -- two of the divisions of the Delaware Department of Labor that help people who are unemployed. 6

10 YOUR INDIVIDUAL ELIGIBILITY (CONT D) PROFILING PROGRAM PARTICIPATION: If you are selected to participate in the Profiling Program, you will receive a letter of notification explaining the program in more detail. Should you be selected to participate: The Division and DET will dedicate extra resources and staff time to develop a strategic plan to maximize your opportunity to obtain advantageous employment. You are required to maintain your eligibility for UI benefits and attend those activities, which will be needed, in your efforts to return to work. Failure to register or participate in any testing and training/program required by the Division of Employment and Training may result in a denial of UI benefits. ACTIVE WORK SEARCH Eligibility to receive benefits is dependent upon your showing that you have made a reasonable effort to find work each week. You will be required to make at least one new work search contact each week, and indicate the employer name, address, type of work sought, result of the contact and the date when filing for your weekly benefits. While it is often necessary to return to a previously contacted employer, a new work contact must also be made on a weekly basis. If you are required to make an active work search during a week, and fail to do so, you will be ineligible to receive benefits for that week. When claiming your weekly UI benefits through TeleBenefits or WebBenefits, you will need to supply work search date information. You are required to complete the Work Search Log each week you are receiving UI benefits. The Division will review this log periodically. Failure to complete this log could result in denial of benefits (see Work Search Log on page 31). 7

11 ONE WEEK WAITING PERIOD FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS What is the waiting period? A valid one week Waiting Period must be served in each claim benefit year before UI benefits can be paid to you. You must properly file for the one week waiting period, meet all of the eligibility requirements for that week and not have excessive earnings for that week to be credited as your one week waiting period. Benefits are not paid for the one week waiting period. When does the waiting period go into effect? The one week waiting period goes into effect with all new benefit year claims starting as of January 5, How many waiting periods are possible in a benefit year? A claimant will have to serve a single one week waiting period per claim benefit year. If your employer lays you off several times a year, will you need to serve a waiting week each time you re laid off? No, there is a single one week waiting period served per claim benefit year. When should you file your first request for weekly benefits, should you wait until after the waiting period week is over? DO NOT WAIT to file your weekly benefit request. File for your weekly benefits each week starting with the first week of your claim. You must properly request and meet all of the eligibility requirements and not have excessive earnings for the week to be credited as your one week waiting period. Will this waiting period reduce your maximum allowed benefit? No, the one week waiting period does not affect a claimant s maximum benefit amount. What if you file a reduced hours claim, will that week count as your waiting period? Yes, as long as you are eligible to receive any benefit payment, including a reduced amount, that week can count as your one week waiting period as long as you have met all other eligibility requirements. RETURN TO WORK If you return to full-time work, your benefits stop on the very first day you work, even if you do not receive any pay until sometime later. You may be eligible to receive a partial payment for the week of reemployment, depending upon the day of reemployment. You must indicate reemployment status on your weekly claim request and report gross wages earned during the benefit week. (See Wages/Earnings Calendar on page 33 of the handbook). Once you have indicated on your weekly claim request that you have returned to work, you MUST report to the local office to file an additional claim or reopen online at in the next week that you become unemployed or have reduced hours in order to be eligible to collect additional benefits. 8

12 RETURN TO WORK (CONT D) If you return to part-time work, or are filing a claim for reduced hours, and your weekly income exceeds your earnings allowance, you will be required to report to your local office to reopen your claim or reopen online. Similarly, if you are working part-time or reduced hours and you have a week in which no work is performed and no wages are payable, you will need to reopen your claim in-person at your local office or reopen online. If you return to part-time work, you must continue to seek full-time employment, report all gross earnings as required, and meet all eligibility requirements. immediately. Separation from any employer, part-time or full-time, can affect your eligibility and MUST be reported For help reporting your gross weekly wages, please refer to the Wages/Earnings Calendar on page 33. REPORT ALL INCOME INFORMATION YOU MUST KNOW ABOUT REPORTING WAGES WHAT ARE WAGES? Wages are any and all income received from: Work Performed Commissions Bonuses or Tips Holiday pay Dismissal payments/severance pay Back pay awards Workers Compensation or other Disability payments DO YOU REPORT GROSS WAGES? Yes, gross wages must be reported when you file for your weekly benefits on TeleBenefits or WebBenefits in the week they were earned, not when you receive your pay. The term gross wages refers to the amount of money earned before taxes or any other deductions are taken. You must report all employment and all income from such employment and the date(s) the income was earned and not when you receive your paycheck. Your benefits stop on the very first day you work if you return to full-time work even if you do not receive your pay until sometime later. You may need to calculate your gross hourly wages yourself in order to report them during your call to TeleBenefits or when you enter the information using the WebBenefits option on the Internet, if you do not have a pay statement or your work week is different from our claim week. See Wages/Earnings Calendar on page 33 to help calculate your weekly earnings. 9

13 REPORT ALL INCOME (CONT D) WHY DO YOU NEED TO REPORT YOUR WAGES? Because it s the law and the Division s Benefit Payment Control Unit conducts cross match audits of claims and compares the wages reported by you to those wages reported by your employer during the same time period. The Division also has access to employers new hire information, a system whereby an employer reports information about newly hired employees. An investigation will be conducted if an employer indicates or reports conflicting information or wages from what was reported by you. WHAT HAPPENS IF I DO NOT REPORT MY WAGES? You will be responsible for repaying the benefits that you received unlawfully plus 18% interest annually and 15% penalty fee, on the fraud balance, if you are found to have collected benefits fraudulently. Further, you will be disqualified from the receipt of UI benefits for one year. In addition, you may be prosecuted criminally, face additional penalties and possible jail time. You will be responsible for repaying the benefits that you received, but were not entitled to, even if no fraud is found. REPORT ALL PENSIONS, ANNUITIES, DISABILITY PAYMENTS, ETC. You are required to report all payments you receive from and/or changes in pensions, annuities, or similar periodic payments since your weekly UI benefit account may be subject to a reduction. Payments received that should be reported include: State and Local Government Pensions Union Pensions Private Employer Pensions Military Disability Retirement Pensions Military Retirement Pensions Benefits derived from IRAs and Keogh Plans Railroad Retirement Annuities Workers Compensation Federal Civil Service Pensions, including Disability Retirement Pensions Short or Long Term Disability Payments QUALITY CONTROL A quality control system is administered by the Division to prevent error and fraud in the UI program. An investigation of randomly selected claims is conducted weekly to verify the legality of benefit payments to a claimant. During the course of your claim, it may be randomly selected for investigation. If this should occur, you will be required to meet with an investigator and complete a detailed questionnaire about your claim. The quality control system was established pursuant to a mandate from the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration. CHILD SUPPORT PAYMENTS If you are required to pay child support through the Division of Child Support Enforcement, a deduction may be made from your UI check. Any errors or discrepancies in such deductions must be directed to a Division of Child Support Enforcement Customer Service Representative at (302)

14 REPORT CHANGE OF ADDRESS You are required to report all changes of your address in a writing signed by you (or in person with proof of identification) with your social security number and effective date of the move to the local office where you filed your claim. If you move out of your local area, please report to your NEW local office. If you move to a different state, you will need to reopen your claim as an interstate claim by contacting the call center in your new state of residence and at that time you will need to provide your change of address. Failure to report a change of address may impact your eligibility for UI benefits. IMPORTANT NOTE Mail sent to you from the Department of Labor will not be forwarded. Therefore, it is your responsibility to update the Division with your new address immediately. CLAIMANT NOTICE OF RECEIPT OF BENEFIT RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES Before being paid UI benefits you will be required to read and sign the following Acknowledgement of rights and responsibilities: I understand that if, after receiving unemployment insurance benefits, I am finally determined by a claims deputy, appeals referee, the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board or a Court not to have been entitled to those benefits, I am liable to repay the Delaware Division of Unemployment Insurance ( Division ) a sum of money equal to the benefits I have already received. I understand that I am liable to repay the Division for benefits I have already received whether I received them as a result of my fraudulent act(s) or by mistake and even where I was initially determined to be entitled to benefits where such determination is reversed on appeal. I also understand that my liability to repay the Division may arise as follows: (1) I am determined to be subject to a period of disqualification or ineligibility; (2) I receive benefits under the wrong program; (3) I have wages removed from the monetary determination made in my claim that reduces my weekly benefit amount or results in my monetary ineligibility; or (4) I did not report earnings or incorrectly reported earnings. I understand that should I be disqualified for reason of fraud, in addition to being liable to repay the Division of Unemployment Insurance all unemployment benefits that I have received for weeks of unemployment for which I am later disqualified, I will be liable to pay interest at an annual rate of 18.0% plus an additional 15.0% monetary penalty imposed on amounts received due to fraud. I understand that I am required to report any wages or income from any source every week that I claim unemployment benefits, even if such wages or income are less than the 50.0% earnings allowance and that a failure to report any wages or income received during any week can result in a disqualification from benefits for one year and a fraud disqualification. I understand that I have the right to file a timely appeal from decisions that either disqualify me from receiving benefits or find me ineligible for them and that I cannot challenge those decisions once they are final by appealing the Division s determination as to the sum of money I am required to repay. 11

15 RECOUPMENT OF OVERPAYMENTS The Division is required by law to recover the amount of money it has overpaid to a claimant in the form of UI benefits whether such payments were the result of mistakes by the Division, the claimant, or the claimant s separating employer or a claimant s fraudulent acts. The two sections of law cited below furnish the legal basis for the Division s recoupment activities. 19 Delaware Code 3325: Any person who has received any sum as benefits under this chapter to which it is finally determined that the person was NOT entitled shall be liable to repay said overpayment, to the Division for the Unemployment Compensation Fund, or to have such sum deducted from future benefits payable to the person under this chapter. Benefit overpayments paid to a claimant as the result of fraud shall be repaid with interest plus a penalty fee at the same rate as provided for the past due assessments and reimbursement payments in lieu of assessments. 19 Delaware Code 3314(6) An individual shall be disqualified for benefits: If the Division determines such an individual has made a false statement or representation knowing it to be false or knowingly failed to disclose a material fact to obtain benefits to which the individual was not lawfully entitled, and such disqualification shall be for a period of one year beginning with the date on which the first false statement, false representation or failure to disclose a material fact occurred. FRAUD LIABILITY STATEMENT While receiving UI benefits, a person must report all earnings or income for each week benefits are claimed. Failure to disclose a material fact or knowingly make a false statement for the purpose of obtaining benefits (including but not limited to, providing the incorrect last employer and/or incorrect reason for separation, etc.) to which you are not legally entitled may result in an overpayment plus interest, disqualification from benefits for one year, and prosecution including a fine and/or imprisonment. Any person who has received benefits to which he was not entitled is liable to repay such sum. Entitlement to future benefits will be affected by outstanding overpayments. Any questions regarding an overpayment or recoupment of an overpayment, please contact the Benefit Payment Control Unit at (302) SELF-EMPLOYMENT If you are self-employed at the time you file an initial claim for UI benefits or become self-employed while collecting UI benefits, you must provide this information to the Division. Delaware Courts have consistently ruled that self-employed individuals are not eligible to receive UI benefits. UI benefits are intended to support individuals who become unemployed through no fault of their own and to promote stable employment, not to support the early stages of a new business or self-employed individuals whose enterprises have not been profitable. Cases addressing the issue suggest that self-employment will be found to exist where an individual has made more than de minimis efforts on behalf of business the individual owns regardless of whether the business is profitable or that the individual remains available for other work. 12

16 BASE PERIOD Your Base Period is the 1 st four of the last five completed calendar quarters. ILLUSTRATION OF BASE PERIOD THE SHADED CALENDAR QUARTERS REPRESENT YOUR BASE PERIOD Oct. Nov. Dec. Oct. Nov. Dec. Jan. Feb. March Jan. Feb. March April May June April May June July August Sept. July August Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec. Jan. Feb. March April May June If your initial Claim begins in: Jan. Feb. March April May June July August Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec. Jan. Feb. March July August Sept. Jan. Feb. March April May June July August Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec. Jan. Feb. March April May June Oct. Nov. Dec. Previous Year Last Year This Year ALTERNATIVE BASE PERIOD If it is determined that you have insufficient wages in the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters base period (illustrated above) to become monetarily eligible for UI benefits, 19 Del.C. 3302(2) provides for the use of an alternative base period. The alternative base period allows for the use of wages from the four most recent completed calendar quarters immediately preceding the effective date of your UI claim. Please contact your local office if you have questions regarding alternative base period. QUICK GUIDE TO CALCULATE YOUR BENEFIT You may compute approximately how much you will receive by using the following formula: Determine the base period for the claim you are filing using the chart above. Determine the amount of wages you were paid in covered employment during the base period by calendar quarters. Determine the two quarters in which you were paid the highest wages (see below). Divide the wages paid to you in those two quarters by 46 to calculate approximately how much you will receive per week. A maximum weekly benefit amount is established by law (see Weekly Benefit Amount Chart on pages 16-18). THE FOUR CALENDAR QUARTERS ARE: 3-month periods: Beginning Ending January 1 March 31 April 1 June 30 July 1 September 30 October 1 December 31 13

17 YOUR MONETARY ELIGIBILITY BENEFIT AMOUNT To be eligible for benefits, you must have been paid at least thirty-six times your weekly benefit amount by a covered employer in your base period. The amount of your benefit will be 1/46 of your wages in the two highest wage quarters in the base period. However, no one who is eligible for benefits will receive less than $20 or more than $330 a week, if eligible. NUMBER OF WEEKS RECEIVING BENEFITS The number of weeks you may receive benefits depends upon your total wages during your entire base period. A worker is entitled to receive a total amount of benefits equal to 50% of their base period wages or twenty-six times their weekly benefit amount, whichever is less. BENEFIT YEAR You may receive the amount of benefits due you over the course of your benefit year. The benefit year begins on the Sunday of the first week in which you file a claim which is found to be monetarily eligible. It continues for a period of one year. If you draw all of your benefits from this state, you cannot receive any more payments within that benefit year. After your benefit year has ended, you may receive more benefits based on wages received during the new base period. Benefits cannot be paid in a second benefit year unless you have had new employment and earned at least ten times your new weekly benefit amount since the beginning of your preceding benefit year and otherwise fully qualify for a claim. EARNINGS ALLOWANCE You are allowed to earn 50% of your weekly benefit amount without any deduction from your weekly benefit payment. Anything over 50% is deducted dollar for dollar. For example: If your weekly benefit amount is $100, you are allowed to earn $50 gross (wages before deductions) within the benefit week with no deduction of your UI benefit, anything over $50 is deducted dollar for dollar. QUICK GUIDE TO CALCULATE YOUR EARNINGS ALLOWANCE Weekly Benefit Amount Multiply by.50 x.50 Earnings Allowance before deduction Example Weekly Benefit Amount Gross Income gross income minus earnings allowance (see above chart) amount deducted from weekly benefit amount Adjusted check amount Please note: Your maximum check amount is limited to your weekly benefit amount. SEE WAGES/EARNINGS CALENDAR on page

18 YOUR MONETARY ELIGIBILITY (CONT D) REDUCED WORK HOURS If your regular hours of work are reduced, you may be eligible to receive partial payments. See "Earnings Allowance on the previous page. Also see Return to Work on page 8. SEASONAL CLAIMS Seasonal Employment is defined as the first processing of agricultural or seafood products. You will be considered a seasonal employee if you are employed with an identified seasonal employer even if you do not work directly with a seasonal product. If 75% or more of your base period wages were from seasonal employment, as defined by Delaware law, you will be eligible to receive benefits only for those months in which you were employed in your base period. For example, if you worked from May through September in your base period with a seasonal employer, you would be eligible to draw benefits only for the work done during those months. FEDERAL CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES If you have been a civilian employee of the United States Government for two years leading up to the filing of your claim, you should inform your local office. You may be entitled to UI benefits under a federal law that provides for the payment of benefits to former federal civilian employees. You will be required to present a Form SF-8 or a Form SF-50 and pay stubs or a Form W-2 to the local office when filing such a claim. MILITARY PERSONNEL Provisions exist in federal law for persons discharged from the armed forces of the United States under honorable conditions to file claims for UI. If you were honorably discharged from the military, you are required to present a Form DD- 214, Member 4 and proof of your Social Security Number when filing such a claim. 15

19 WEEKLY BENEFIT AMOUNT CHART 16

20 WEEKLY BENEFIT AMOUNT CHART (CONT D) 17

CLAIMANT HANDBOOK YOUR GUIDE TO UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE BENEFITS OFFICE LOCATIONS:

CLAIMANT HANDBOOK YOUR GUIDE TO UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE BENEFITS OFFICE LOCATIONS: OFFICE LOCATIONS: Wilmington Local Office Department of Labor Division of Unemployment Insurance 4425 North Market Street Fox Valley Wilmington, DE 19802 (302) 761-8446 Newark Local Office Department of

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