The U.S. Department of Labor’s 2015 third quarter report gives
Utah high marks for a healthy unemployment insurance (UI) program. The purpose
of the UI program is to preserve a skilled workforce, benefiting both employers
Utah’s UI Trust Fund balance has recovered from the hit of the
Great Recession when there were significant benefit increases. As of Sept. 30,
2015, the Trust Fund had a balance of nearly $926 million.
Utah has the 5th healthiest trust fund in the nation — based on
total wages in the state and our ability to weather another significant
increase in benefits. Utah has approximately 1.4 million individuals in its
labor force covered under unemployment insurance, and nearly 75,000 employers
paying into the UI Trust Fund.
During the third quarter of 2015, the average individual qualified
for 21.9 weeks of benefits and collected only 12.2 of these weeks, oftentimes
returning to work before the end of their claim. This is a decrease from
13.3 weeks at this same time last year.
Utah is ranked 5th in the nation for the lowest duration of
claimants collecting benefits, and 3rd when taken within the context of the
maximum number of weeks available.
Utah's economy is strong. When unemployment does happen, we're here to support employers and employees.|
Focus on Integrity
Individuals submit a weekly certification stating their
availability for work, detailing their work search efforts, and reporting any
earnings from part-time or temporary work from the previous week. To verify the
accuracy of this information, Workforce Services conducts data cross-matches
and random claim audits.
The vast majority of Utah’s claimants report accurately. When
someone makes a mistake on their weekly filing, we encourage them to contact us
immediately to correct the error either through our online chat feature at jobs.utah.gov or by calling into our
Claims Center at 801-526-4400.
We take fraud seriously. Individuals found to have committed fraud
are required to pay back the total overpayment plus a 100% administrative
penalty. They can be disqualified for benefits for up to 49 weeks and face
liens, wage garnishments and recoupment of this money through their federal tax
refund. We actively prosecute fraud — resulting in six 3rd degree felony
convictions and 22 Class A misdemeanor convictions during 2015.
Click here for more information about Utah's UI program integrity efforts.