Wisconsin Unemployment

WISCONSIN UNEMPLOYMENT LAW COMMENTS AND ANALYSIS

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The Continued Assistance Act included a new documentation requirement for PUA claims. In my original post on the Continued Assistance Act, I explained: There is now an additional documentation requirement for PUA claims. Claimants will have to provide documentation regarding their employment, self-employment, or the job offer/work they were slated to start for any weeks PUA weeks for the week ending 1/2/2021 or later. New PUA claims filed on Jan. 31st or later will…
Wisconsin news is in a tizzy about pandemic unemployment benefits leading to shortages of job applicants. News reports in Wisconsin feature retail establishments, and the outcry about worker shortages from the restaurant lobby has been non-stop. Sen. Nass even wants to start requiring unemployed workers to do four job searches a week and end all pandemic-related eligibility for regular unemployment benefits. Hogwash. In other states, unemployment benefits may be an issue. But, in Wisconsin unemployment…
My Madison alder rep, Regina Vidaver, passed on the following information about an Emergency Broadband Benefit that will provide a discount of up to $50 per month towards broadband service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands. Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers if they contribute more than $10…
The Department is sending out a new notice regarding PUA eligibility that is creating much confusion. This notice is the Department’s effort to comply with UIPL No. 16-20 Change 5 (25 Feb. 2021). This program letter addresses various issues with PUA benefits that exist in some states. Unfortunately, all of the issues raised in this program letter exist in Wisconsin. As a result, this new PUA notice reflects some massive changes in PUA eligibility that…
At the 18 March 2021 meeting of the Advisory Council, the Department began introducing its own proposals for changing unemployment law. More proposals are expected. These first proposals are appearing first because they were originally put forward during the last legislative session. The pandemic, however, meant that these proposals were never acted on. Some of these proposals are innocuous. Others combine difficult and complex issues with a less than forthright explanation. What follows are these…
With the pandemic coming up on a year, many folks are seeing notices on their portal about needing to file a new initial claim because they have a new benefit year. The notice looks something like the following: Your current benefit year has ended with the week you just filed a weekly claim for. If you want to receive benefits for the week ending 03/20/21 you must file an initial claim application to start a…
Previous posts detailed the length of time and number of cases in the unemployment backlog in part 1, some of the mistakes by the Department that allow cases to be re-opened in part 2, a place for stories and advice about how to find assistance in part 3, how most claims in Wisconsin — and unlike in other states — are being denied and thereby creating a ginormous backlog in hearings in…
In a surprise session on February 17th, the Joint Finance Committee met to discuss unemployment proposals to take advantage of some federal dollars from the Continuing Assistance Act and the Department’s effort to fund a new mainframe computer system. The substitute amendment that was passed unanimously (?!) will: start the process for a request for proposals (RFP) for the new computing system (but does not provide any actual funding), extend the waiting week waiver to…
In part 1, I described how difficult it is for disabled folks to gain access to the Department’s claim-filing and how the Department’s rules absolve the Department of responsibility for providing effective access. Here is the Department’s statement about a lack of accommodations when confronted with some of these problems — namely that a hard-of-hearing person who reads lips could not call and ask for assistance, that there is only one way to file…
The Department’s illegal questions of disabled workers over their able and available status and the Department’s general hostility towards disabled workers have already been documented. But, what exactly are the Department’s obligations towards making the claims-filing process accessible to disabled folk? TMJ4 looked at this issue a few weeks ago and found that those with visual or hearing impairments are seemingly out-of-luck when trying to file an unemployment claim. As Wisconsin currently only has one…