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SIDES eResponse



Version: 2.2 Date: September 2014

Copyright © 2014, National Association of State Workforce Agencies.
All Rights Reserved.

  1. Introduction
  2. Getting Started
  3. Logging In
  4. Features Included in Multiple Screens
  5. Separation Information Requests Screen
  6. Amending a Submitted Response

1 Introduction

SIDES eResponse makes it possible for employers to respond electronically to requests for information from participating state unemployment insurance agencies. This guide provides step-by-step guidance for responding to requests for information about the reasons that a former worker was separated from employment, including samples of the screens that you will see when you log-in to eResponse and enter information related to a specific claim/individual. The eResponse system performs a comprehensive check of the information to ensure that it is complete before it is submitted. When a response is submitted, eResponse provides a confirmation number for your records.

2 Getting Started

2.1 Minimum Requirements, Credentials, and Conventions

Minimum Requirements. The minimum system requirements to use SIDES eResponse are:
  • Internet Explorer version 7.0 or higher
  • Javascript must be turned on
  • A minimum screen resolution of 1024 x 768

2.2 Credentials

Before logging into SIDES eResponse, you will need the following credentials:

  • Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN)
  • State Employer Identification Number (SEIN) if used by requesting State
  • Personal Identification Number (PIN)
The State Unemployment Insurance (UI) agency requesting information will provide your PIN either with the notice that requests separation information or through another avenue. Some States may assign a business one PIN for access to all requests sent to it; other states may assign a separate PIN for access to each request. If you have questions regarding credentials for logging in to eResponse, please contact the State UI agency from which you have received a request.

2.3 Conventions

This guide uses the following conventions:

[Button]: Brackets indicate a button and the button label you will see on the screen

Hyperlink: All hyperlinks in the screen will be indicated with a bold underline.

“Area of screen”: Double quotes indicate headers or some other specific area of a particular screen.

SMALL CAPS: Screen titles are shown in SMALL CAPS.

3 Logging In

To log-in to SIDES eResponse:

  • Launch an Internet Browser (Internet Explorer, version 7.0 or higher required)
The WELCOME screen will appear
On the WELCOME screen, select Separation Information, and click the [Select] button.
The LOGIN screen will appear

On the LOGIN screen, do the following:
  • Select the appropriate State from the drop-down list;
  • Enter your Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) without dashes or other punctuation;
  • Enter your State Employer Identification Number (SEIN) without dashes or other punctuation;
  • Note: If a State UI agency does not use a State Employer Identification Number, the SEIN is not required and no SEIN box will be displayed on the Login screen;
  • Enter the PIN provided to you by the requesting State UI agency, and
  • Note: PINs are case sensitive
  • Click the [Login] button.
  • If the login is unsuccessful, first try again, being very careful with your key strokes. If you continue to have a problem, either your credentials are incorrect or there are no separation information requests pending at this time. Contact the requesting State UI agency if you received a notice that a separation request is pending and you cannot log into the system to enter your responses.

4 Features Included in Multiple Screens

  • Identifying Information. Your FEIN and SEIN (if used) will be displayed in the upper right portion of the screens.
  • Information Bar. A vertical section on the left side of the screen provides specific instructions to help you navigate specific pages.
  • Site Navigation Buttons. At the bottom of most pages you will find the following buttons
    • [Back]—saves your work and takes you to the previous page
    • [Cancel]—deletes data from the screen, and you remain on the same page.
    • [Save]—saves data entered and runs validations, but you remain on the same page.
    • [Main Menu]—does not save data entered, and returns you to the Separation Information Requests page.
    • [Next]—saves data entered and moves to the next page.
    • [Go]—a drop down menu allows you to select and jump to a particular page.
    Note: Using the browser navigation button to go back or go forward will NOT ensure the proper functioning of the site and could cause you to lose work.
  • Sign Out Button. The [Sign Out] button located in the upper far-right portion of each page will log you out of the eResponse website. Be sure you have saved your work before signing out.
  • Help Icon. This symbol indicates help is available for the particular field where it is found. Simply mouse over the icon to see the help text.
  • Screen Identification Number. The number in the bottom right corner of each screen identifies it. Should you have questions or problems with a particular screen/page, please refer to this screen number when contacting your State UI agency.
  • Standard Web Interface Features. Many pages include navigation and functions that are common on most websites, including clickable radio buttons, check boxes, drop-down menus, and text fields. Remember to use only the navigation features built into the site. Using browser navigation features to go back, forward, or print could cause you to lose your work.

5 Separation Information Requests Screen

After logging in to eResponse you will see the pending separation information request or requests that are associated with the PIN that you entered. A sample screen is shown below.

At the top left is a “Search by SSN” box. If the list of pending requests is lengthy, you can locate a specific request by entering the SSN to which it relates in this box and clicking [Search].

The list shows each claimant’s name, SSN, and the date and time that the separation information response is due to the requesting state. It is important that each response be submitted by its due date to ensure that the information can be used to determine whether the individual is eligible for unemployment benefits.

Response Status Buttons. The buttons shown for each pending request indicates its status.
  • If the response has not yet been started, the button will show [Create Response]
  • If the response is in progress, you can choose the buttons [Edit Response] or [Delete Response]
  • If the response has been submitted, the button will show [Create Amendment].

5.1 Creating a Response

This section takes you step by step in the process of creating and submitting a response. At any point in the process, you can save your work and come back to it later. When you login to work on it later, click the [Edit Response] button which will take you back to the beginning of the response pages. You also have the option of deleting all of the information that you have entered and starting fresh by clicking the [Delete Response] button.

Note: Only a limited character set (numbers and letters) may be keyed into text fields. Use care when cutting and pasting from other applications, such as Microsoft Word. Invisible characters such as a paragraph symbol may be pasted into the text field that will cause an error message to be displayed.

To begin work on a response, click [Create Response]. You will then see the CLAIMANT AND EMPLOYER IDENTIFICATION page.

“Employer Information” is also pre-filled; however, should this information be incorrect, you may provide corrected information. If you enter information into the “Corrected Employer Information” fields, the changed data will be routed to the appropriate State UI agency for review and handling.

Immediately below this section, there is an opportunity to check a box indicating that the request has been sent to you in error either because the individual did not work for your business or, if you are a TPA, that you do not represent the employer for whom the individual worked. If you check one of these boxes, click [Next] which will give you the opportunity to provide comments and submit the response.

In the “Preparer Information” section you will enter information about the entity and person preparing the response.

After completing the required information on the Claimant and Employer Identification page, click [Next]. This will take you to the ADDITIONAL CLAIMANT INFORMATION REQUEST page. On this page you are asked to provide any other SSN or name used by the claimant and to download any documents that the requesting state agency has attached to the request. Please download any attachments, review, and complete any that must be returned with your response. After reviewing/completing this page, click [Next] which takes you to the EMPLOYMENT INFORMATION page. You will enter information about the claimant’s employment and earnings with your business on this page.

After entering this information, click [Next] which will take you to the REASON FOR SEPARATION page.

Below are the separation reasons available to you from the “Employer’s Reason for Claimant’s Separation” drop-down list. If you know the specific number associated with your reason, you may simply type the number of your choice to jump to that reason in the list.

1 = Temporary Layoff
2 = Laid Off/Lack of Work
3 = Fired/Discharged
4 = Vacation/Holiday Shutdown
5 = Asked to Resign
6 = Voluntary Quit/Separation
7 = School Employee Between Semesters or Terms, Likely to Return
8 = School Employee Between Semesters or Terms, Not Likely to Return
9 = Still Employed, Full Time
10 = Still Employed, Part Time
11 = Still Employed, Hours Reduced by Employer
12 = On Call or Temporary Status
13 = Leave of Absence
14 = Retirement
15 = Disciplinary Suspension
16 = Labor Dispute
17 = Professional Athlete Between Sports Seasons
18 = Disaster Related Suspension
19 = Other
99 = Not Provided

After selecting one of the reasons from the list above, you will be directed to additional pages and asked a series of questions related to that particular reason.

If after you begin answering the questions, you decide that another reason may be more accurate, you may go back and change the reason selected. If you do so, you will see a screen asking you to confirm the change and warning that your answers to the questions related to the prior reason will be deleted.

After completing all the questions related to the reason for separation, click [Next] which will take you to the ATTACHMENTS page.

If you have attachments that support the reason for separation you have provided you may enter them here. The following file types can be attached to the Separation Request or Response:

Type Description Programs to Use to Access
RTF A rich text format document Most word processing applications
PDF An Adobe PDF Adobe PDF Reader or Adobe PDF
TXT A text file All word processing applications and all text editors (Notepad, vi, etc…)
TIFF A tiff image file Graphical tools and picture tools
CSV A comma-separated values file Most spreadsheet programs and database management systems

After attaching any supporting documents click [Next] to go to the SUBMISSION page.

The [Submit to State] button will be grayed out until the system has determined that the Separation Response is fully compliant with the data input validation and business rules. If there are errors with the business or validation rules, you will see links on this screen displaying the screen and field name in question.

Simply click on the link in order to be directed to the screen and error.

When the Separation Response has been successfully validated, you can submit it to the State UI agency.

You may print the Separation Response at any time by clicking the View/Print link. It will display in Adobe PDF format and can be printed from an Adobe Acrobat reader. You will be able to see all information you entered up to the time of printing as well as the information on the Separation Request.

As with other important steps in the editing of a Separation Response, a warning screen will appear to make sure you are fully prepared to submit to the State.

After you click [Submit] you will see a CONFIRMATION page which provides your confirmation number. Keep this confirmation number in your files. The confirmation number will also appear at the top of the PDF under the View/Print link. We strongly recommend you print a copy of your submission for your records. You may also save an electronic copy of the PDF document; however the PDF document is deleted from the web site after 30 days.

6 Amending a Submitted Response

After you submit a response, it remains on the SIDES eResponse website for 30 days from the date of the request; during that period you can correct the response or add additional information. However, any changes made to the response after the due date for submission to the requesting state agency may or may not be used in determining the individual’s eligibility for unemployment benefits depending on state policy.

To amend a response, log-in to eResponse using the appropriate PIN (either a permanent PIN issued by the state to which the response was submitted or a one-time PIN linked to the request for which the response was submitted.) Identify the case on the SEPARATION INFORMATION REQUESTS page and click [Create Amendment]. You will then see the same series of screens that were presented when you created your submitted response. Make whatever changes are needed on those screens. Before submitting the Amended Response, you will be asked to explain why you are amending your previous submission and what has changed.