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How To Sign Up For Unemployment In Maine

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How to file for unemployment in Maine due to coronavirus

When you file for an unemployment claim in ME, it is important to provide honest and valid information. The state has the right to verify any information you provide. If you intentionally provide false information to the Department of Labor, not only will your claim be denied, but you could be charged with fraud. When you file for unemployment, a representative will verify the information by searching the:

  • New Hire database provided by the Departments of Health and Human Services/Labor
  • Unemployment databases of other states
  • Inmate records of prisons, jails, and other correctional facilities within the state
  • Payroll records of private and public employers

Why Does Mdol Contact My Employer When I Apply For Unemployment

Determining a person’s unemployment eligibility is a two-part process. Maine DOL’s Bureau of Unemployment Compensation receives an individual’s initial unemployment claim with the information required on the application. BUC Claims Representatives also gather information from the employer, analyze all the available wage and separation information and then make a determination, which is communicated to the individual who has applied through their ReEmployME account.

Is It Possible To Find Out If An Employee Is Eligible For Unemployment Before The Person Files A Claim

No, Maine DOL can’t determine whether an individual would be eligible for unemployment before that person separates from the employer. An individual must separate from their employer and then file a claim. Maine DOL reviews the case to make a determination. If an individual is not sure whether they would be eligible, it is best to apply. The individual must still be connected to the labor market in order to receive benefits, be able and available for work and retain contact with the employer.

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Division Of Administrative Hearings

  • 30 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0030
  • Phone 621-5001
  • 57 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0057
  • Phone 623-6786
  • 47 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0047
  • General: 621-5100 Fax 287-8351
  • Overpayment Collections/Offsets: 621-5154
  • Combined Wage Claims and Federal Programs: 626-6225
  • Trade Act, Maine Enterprise Program : 623-7964
  • Fraud Investigations: 621-5119
  • Employer Questions re Charges: 621-5100

Contact one of the Divisions of the Bureau of Unemployment Compensation electronicallyTelephone Number for New & Weekly Unemployment Claims

Toll-Free: 1-800-593-7660 TTY/Relay for Deaf and hard of hearing: Maine relay 711

  • Mailing Addresses for Unemployment Claims Centers

Wage Base And Tax Rates

Maine unemployment rate ticked up slightly in August

For many years, Maine has required UI taxes on the first $15,000 of each employee’s wages. However, that amount, known as the taxable wage base, could change.

The UI tax rate for new employers, which recently has been 2.60%, also is subject to change. Established employers are subject to a lower or higher rate than new employers depending on “experience.” This means, among other things, whether your business has ever had any employees who made claims for state unemployment benefits.

One piece of good news is that state UI tax payments generally can be credited against your federal taxes under the Federal Unemployment Tax Act .

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How Unemployment Works In Maine

Heres a quick overview of how the unemployment insurance process works in Maine.

  • Before you apply, make sure you meet all benefit requirements. You must meet all requirements to be eligible to collect unemployment insurance in Maine. Among others, make sure you were let go from your previous employer for a qualifying reason, that you are ready and able to go back to work, and that you have met minimum wage requirements during your Base Period or Alternate Base Period.
  • If you meet all benefit requirements, then you can apply for unemployment insurance benefits. You can file an initial claim for unemployment benefits online or by telephone by calling 1-800-593-7660, or by mail if your employer has given you a Maine Form B-9 .
  • Determine the amount of your benefit. After you apply, you will receive a Wage Determination Letter document showing your weekly Maine unemployment insurance amount. Verify that all information is correct and contact MDOL if it is not.
  • Determine the number of weeks you can draw benefits. Anyone filing a Maine unemployment claim who continues to meet all eligibility requirements can generally collect up to 26 weeks of benefits each Benefit Year.
  • Conduct an ongoing job search. You are required to look for full-time work while drawing benefits. You are expected to find and apply to appropriate job openings on a weekly basis as well as registering for the Maine JobLink site/program. You will be asked to report these activities in your weekly claims report.
  • I Have Laid Off My Employees And They Have Requested That Their Paid Time Off Is Paid Out To Them Will This Affect Their Unemployment Benefits

    If the employees have been truly laid off and are separated from employment with your business, then the payout of PTO will not count against unemployment insurance benefits . If the employees are on an unpaid leave of absence due to COVID-19 measures, they can apply for and receive unemployment benefits. If employees are receiving pay while on a leave of absence , they are not unemployed and would not collect UI on top of their earnings. New federal legislation was enacted March 18th on paid sick leave and paid family and medical leave.

    There is more information for employees and employers on the website of U.S. DOL: on new federal paid sick leave or federal paid family and medical leave from U.S. DOL: .

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    Guide To Job Hunting In Maine

    Our Job Hunting in Maine resource is a book filled with tips and techniques to make your search go faster and be more successful. After reading through Job Hunting in Maine, you should come away with the latest tips and techniques to enhance your job search, and an introduction to CareerCenters located throughout the state and how you can use the services available to you.

    View and download under Online Resources to the right, and find the PDF and Microsoft Word versions on our Library page.

    Types Of Disability Policies

    ReEmployMe: Claimant Portal Registration and Email Verification

    There are two types of disability policies.

    • Short-term policies may pay for up to two years. Most last for a few months to a year.

    • Long-term policies may pay benefits for a few years or until the disability ends.

    Employers who offer coverage may provide short-term coverage, long-term coverage, or both.

    If you plan to buy your own policy, shop around and ask:

    • How long do benefits last?

    • How much money will the policy pay?

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    Unemployment Insurance In Maine

    See also: Unemployment insurance in the states

    Unemployment insurance is a term that refers to a joint federal and state program that provides temporary monetary benefits to eligible laid-off workers who are actively seeking new employment. Qualifying individuals receive unemployment compensation as a percentage of their lost wages in the form of weekly cash benefits while they search for new employment.

    The federal government oversees the general administration of state unemployment insurance programs. The states control the specific features of their unemployment insurance programs, such as eligibility requirements and length of benefits.

    Although the word insurance is in the term, a few key differences distinguish unemployment insurance from private insurance plans such as home insurance, car insurance, or health insurance. In most states, employersrather than individuals themselvespay unemployment taxes that fund state unemployment insurance programs. When an individual loses their employment , state-administered unemployment insurance programs provide temporary monetary benefits to the former employee. Unemployment insurance compensation is not intended to replace lost wages it is designed to replace a portion of the individual’s lost wages with the goal of providing financial support as an individual searches for a new job.

    This page provides information about the unemployment insurance program in Maine.

    Maine Unemployment Benefits And Eligibility

    • Maine unemployment benefits provide essential financial support for people who are out of work. Find out how to apply for benefits and how much you’ll receive.

    Finding yourself out of work can be stressful, but you might be entitled to support to help you meet your financial obligations. The Maine Department of Labor issues unemployment benefits to people who lose their jobs through no fault of their own and meet the state’s monetary and non-monetary criteria. Understanding how Maine unemployment benefits work and how to apply can make it easier to get help when you need it most.

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    I’ve Been Receiving Unemployment Benefits My Employer Received A Ppp Grant And Has Put Me Back On The Payroll What Do I Need To Do In Terms Of Ending Unemployment

    You do not need to call the Department of Labor or the Unemployment Bureau. If you are fully back on payroll and receiving your normal wages, you are no longer unemployed and should stop filing weekly claims. Your claim will remain open through the remainder of your benefit year in case you become unemployed at a later date and need to access any remaining benefits for which you are eligible.

    How Do I Apply For Unemployment Benefits In Maine

    File for Maine

    The easiest way for an unemployed worker to file an initial claim or weekly certification is to do so online.

    First, you will sign into your ReEmployME account or create a new account during your first visit to the website. You will need a valid email address to set up your account, and you will be able to follow the clear, step-by-step instructions to either submit an initial claim or reopen an existing UI benefits claim. Once your account is set up, you can use it to check the status of your unemployment claim and to submit your weekly benefits certification.

    If you do not have access to the Internet, you also may call 800-593-7660 between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. Monday through Friday to have someone help you submit your initial UI benefits claim over the phone. But please note that during periods of high volume, you may be placed on hold. Hold times can range from a few minutes to a half-hour. If you are placed on hold, its important to stay on the line so that you dont lose your spot in the queue.

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    How To Apply For Unemployment In Maine

    by Christy Bieber | Updated July 17, 2021 – First published on April 1, 2020

    Many or all of the products here are from our partners that pay us a commission. Its how we make money. But our editorial integrity ensures our experts opinions arent influenced by compensation. Terms may apply to offers listed on this page.

    Unemployment benefits could help you cover the bills if your income is cut or you are laid off because of the novel coronavirus.

    COVID-19 has left millions of Americans worried about dwindling bank account balances as businesses all across the country have shut down in an effort to flatten the curve or slow the spread of the virus.

    A job loss or reduction in your income can hit hard, and you may already be worried about how you will cover the bills. But there is financial help available, including unemployment insurance. This guide on how to apply for unemployment in Maine can help you understand these benefits and get signed up for them if you qualify.

    My Employer Has Been Approved For A Payroll Protection Loan And Is Telling Me That While The Business Is Not Yet Open For Employees To Return To Work They Would Like To Put Me Back On Payroll To Receive My Wages Can I Refuse To Be Put Back On Payroll And Continue Collecting Unemployment Benefits Instead

    No, employees should go back onto payroll if they have the option to do so. An employee would no longer be eligible for unemployment benefits if they are receiving either their full wages, or more than $467 a week, as they would not be considered unemployed. When those receiving unemployment benefits file their required weekly certification, they must answer questions regarding whether they have been offered any work or been paid in the past week.

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    How To Submit An Online Application For Unemployment In Maine

    If you know how to apply for unemployment online in ME, the process will be much easier and quicker. Unemployment applicants can access the online unemployment application through the states official unemployment website. The site allows you to file a claim, as well as access information about your previous claims. When filling out your online application for unemployment, please have the following information ready:

    You must answer all of the unemployment application questions completely the state will not accept incomplete applications. Once you have submitted your application, the system will provide you with a confirmation number and send you an email. Please keep your confirmation number in a safe place for your records.

    I Have Filed An Unemployment Claim Through The Online System But I Can’t Tell Whether My Claim Has Been Accepted And I Didn’t Get A Receipt Showing I Applied

    How to File an Initial Unemployment Claim

    Due to an unprecedented volume of claims, at the moment it might take up to two days for the claim to show up on your account. For your records, please print or take a screenshot of the final confirmation page where the screen says the claim has been successfully submitted so that you have proof that Maine DOL received it.

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    Mainers Fail To Provide Proof Of Employment To Continue Receiving Unemployment

    On August 6, the Maine Department of Labor announced that approximately 7,400 unemployment claimants receiving federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance failed to provide retroactive proof of employment by the August 4 deadline and may be required to repay benefits.

    On December 27, 2020, former President Trump signed a law that affected eligibility requirements for federal pandemic unemployment assistance. The Continued Assistance for Unemployed Workers Act of 2020, part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, created new rules requiring those filing for PUA benefits to provide proof they were employed, self-employed or had plans to become employed or self-employed that fell apart as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, to prove their eligibility for the program.

    Individuals who filed a new claim for PUA benefits on or after January 31, 2021 were required to provide proof of employment within 21 days of applying, or within 21 days of receiving notice from a state agency of the need to submit documentation, whichever date is later.

    Individuals who were receiving PUA benefits prior to January 3, 2021 and received benefits before December 27, 2020 had 90 days from either the date they applied for benefits to submit proof of employment, or 90 days after they were notified by a state agency of the need to submit documentation, whichever date was later.

    Rules For Unemployment Insurance Tax Liability

    As a Maine employer, you generally are liable for the state’s UI tax if you:

    • pay a worker $1,500 or more in gross wages in a calendar quarter, or
    • pay a worker for work performed in any part of the day in each of 20 weeks in the calendar year.

    Different rules, not covered here, apply to agricultural workers, domestic workers, and employees of some non-profit organizations.

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    How Do I Report Fraud

    Collecting unemployment benefits based on giving information is considered unemployment fraud. Unemployment fraud is a crime taken very seriously in Maine, and the state is committed to ensuring that UI benefits end up in the hands of those who truly need them the most.

    If you suspect someone of fraudulently collecting unemployment benefits, or of stealing your identity to commit unemployment fraud, you should report your concerns using the state of Maines online reporting form.

    What Is Initial Unemployment Registration In Maine

    Unemployment claims tick up slightly in Maine

    To apply for unemployment benefits in Maine, unemployed residents must meet the eligibility requirements. If you meet the general eligibility standards, your chances of approval will be fairly high. The state will require you to file a claim for every week that you are unemployed.

    The Department of Labor defines an initial claim as:

    In Maine, a benefit year consists of 12 months, starting on the Sunday you choose to file your initial claim. The state does not back-date claims, and you must have earned a predetermined amount of income to be eligible for benefits. If your unemployment EDD application is approved, you may be able to receive up to 26 weeks of unemployment benefits.

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    What If An Employer Is Considering A Reduction In Work Hours

    Employers are encouraged to contact Maine DOL’s Bureau of Unemployment Compensation to learn about Workshare, an unemployment option that helps businesses retain their workforce during a temporary slowdown in work. The program allows employers to voluntarily reduce the hours of staff in lieu of layoffs. Employees of the business are allowed to collect a partial unemployment benefit to help them offset the loss of income. .

    Find Out Other Ways To File For Unemployment In Maine

    Jobseekers in Maine can also file for unemployment over the phone by calling the Unemployment Compensation Claims Center. A state representative will answer your call and ask you the necessary questions. There is no paperwork to complete, which is convenient. If you do not have access to a telephone, you may freely use the phone at your local Maine Department of Labor Career Center. Before you start your unemployment EDD application, the state asks that you keep the information listed in the section above within reach.

    The state encourages applicants to complete an online application for unemployment, but if you must file by phone, then the state recommends that you adhere to the following suggestions:

    The state also allows unemployed workers to file for unemployment by fax or mail. You can pick up a claim form from your local career center, or print one off their website. Once you fill in the necessary information, simply mail or fax it to UC Claims Center. If you need help with unemployment registration, the state includes an instruction booklet with each paper application. Some private employers may even have paper claims on hand for their employees.

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