Monthly Archives

March 2018

Unemployment Weekly Claims Report

The Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims report for the week ending March 24, 2018 has been released by the Department of Labor.

  • Seasonally adjusted initial claims: 215,000
  • 4 week moving average: 224,500
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.3%
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment number: 1,871,000
  • 4-week moving average: 1,861,500
  • Number of unadjusted claims: 192,440
  • Unadjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.5%
  • Unadjusted number claiming UI benefits: 2,106,576

The full news release report can be downloaded here.

Alaska: Extended Benefits Nearing End

The Department of Labor & Workforce Development in the state of Alaska has announced an update to extended Unemployment Insurance Benefits. Extended benefits began for eligible participants on November 5, 2017. The last payable week of these benefits will be April 7, 2018.

The reason for the termination of these extended benefits is due to the state’s unemployment rate, which is not currently meeting the eligibility requirements. Those affected by this announcement will be notified with a mailed statement from the state’s Unemployment Insurance Program.

Alaskans with a balance of extended benefits can keep filing until the benefits have been exhausted (or the April 7tth date, whichever is first). Those who have already exhausted their regular benefits are able to file a new claim for extended benefits through the end of the April 7th week of 2018.

The following Unemployment Insurance Claim Centers are available to address any questions you may have on this matter:

Anchorage
(907) 269-4700

Fairbanks
(907) 451-2871

Juneau
(907) 465-5552

All other areas
(888) 252-2557

Unemployment Weekly Claims Report

The Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims report for the week ending March 17, 2018 has been released by the Department of Labor.

  • Seasonally adjusted initial claims: 229,000
  • 4 week moving average: 223,750
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.3%
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment number: 1,828,000
  • 4-week moving average: 1,880,500
  • Number of unadjusted claims: 198,473
  • Unadjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.5%
  • Unadjusted number claiming UI benefits: 2,104,251

The full news release report can be downloaded here.

Unemployment Weekly Claims Report

The Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims report for the week ending March 10, 2018 has been released by the Department of Labor.

  • Seasonally adjusted initial claims: 226,000
  • 4 week moving average: 221,500
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.3%
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment number: 1,879,000
  • 4-week moving average: 1,890,750
  • Number of unadjusted claims: 195,897
  • Unadjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.6%
  • Unadjusted number claiming UI benefits: 2,187,125

The full news release report can be downloaded here.

Unemployment Weekly Claims Report

The Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims report for the week ending March 3, 2018 has been released by the Department of Labor.

  • Seasonally adjusted initial claims: 231,000
  • 4 week moving average: 222,500
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.3%
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment number: 1,870,000
  • 4-week moving average: 1,906,750
  • Number of unadjusted claims: 226,450
  • Unadjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.6%
  • Unadjusted number claiming UI benefits: 2,227,076

The full news release report can be downloaded here.

Payroll Audit Independent Determination Program

The Wage and Hour Division (WHD) of the U.S. Department of Labor strives to improve the workforce on a national level by achieving compliance with labor standards. One way the Division plans to stay on top of this mission is with a new pilot program, expediting back wages to employees, without any extra fees.

Created under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Payroll Audit Independent Determination (PAID) program frees employees from violations and litigations. The program will be active for six months, at which point it will be evaluated for future integration.

Those choosing to work with the Division through the PAID program to resolve compensation errors will not face penalties in arriving at a settlement. However, not everyone is eligible to participate. Anyone under investigation by the Division or in current litigation will be unable to take advantage of this service, nor can employers use the program multiple times to resolve the same violations.

Learn more about this program here.

Employee Retention Credit For Employers Affected By California Wildfires

The President recently signed the new Budget Agreement, enacting Section 20103: Employee Retention Credit for Employers Affected by California Wildfires, which extends the Employee Retention Credit to “retained employees” for employers in the California Wildfire Disaster Zone similar to the recent Disaster Tax Relief Hurricane Bill.  Individuals who reside or have a business in Butte, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Nevada, Orange, Solano, Sonoma, and Yuba counties may qualify for tax relief.

The legislation takes direct targeted actions to help employers and communities that were impacted. The retention credit covers those as follows:

  • Employers who had business/employees in the California Wildfire Disaster Zone
  • Employers whose business was inoperable on any day after October 8, 2017 and before January 1, 2018 as a result of damages sustained by the wildfires
  • Employers who had employees with qualified wages that include those paid after October 8, 2017 and before January 1, 2018 beginning on the date the business first became inoperable at the principle place of employment and ending on the date the business resumed significant operations at such principle place of employment

Specifically, for businesses that were inoperable at the employee’s principal place of employment in the designated wildfire disaster zone, the credit is equal to 40% of the first $6,000 in wages paid to the employee during any day after October 8, 2017 and before January 1, 2018. This credit will apply even if the employee performs no services, performs services at a different place of employment than the principal place of employment prior to the wildfires, or performs services at the affected site prior to the resumption of significant operations.

We will continue to communicate with any updates or additional information. If you have locations in these affected areas, please contact us for further assessment. As always, please feel free to reach out to us with any additional questions or concerns.

Unemployment Weekly Claims Report

The Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims report for the week ending February 24, 2018 has been released by the Department of Labor.

  • Seasonally adjusted initial claims: 210,000
  • 4 week moving average: 220,500
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.4%
  • Seasonally adjusted insured unemployment number: 1,931,000
  • 4-week moving average: 1,920,000
  • Number of unadjusted claims: 195,897
  • Unadjusted insured unemployment rate: 1.6%
  • Unadjusted number claiming UI benefits: 2,255,253

The full news release report can be downloaded here.

WOTC: A Win-Win

The advantages of participating in the WOTC program bears repeating. The WOTC (Work Opportunity Tax Credit) program is a federally funded incentive program rewarding businesses hiring those from certain groups, helping both employee and employer.

With the WOTC program, after an employee has been employed for at least 400 hours, a business can gain a 40 percent tax credit of that employee’s first-year wages (up to a certain amount).

Not-for-profit businesses are required to hire only qualifying veterans, gaining a 26 percent of those first-year wages after 400 hours.

The amount received for each employee caps out at $9,600, however the number of employees you bring on is limitless, as long as they are qualified hires.

Consider hiring people in the following programs:

  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipient
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients
  • Marlboro County Rural Renewal Community residents
  • Vocational Rehabilitation or Ticket-to-Work Participants
  • Recently released ex-felons
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients
  • Disabled veterans who within the last year were discharged or unemployed for morethan six months
  • Unemployed veterans
  • Veterans receiving SNAP
  • Long-term unemployment recipient

The process is quite simple, with the option of filing online or by mail. It is important to know that a request to participate in the WOTC program has to be made (postmarked or e-filed) within 28 days of the employee’s start date.

Helpful links for filing: