New Jersey Unemployment Appeals Process

Unemployment insurance in the U.S is a federal-state program which offers weekly monetary compensation to jobless workers for up to 26 weeks. The WBA (Weekly Benefit Amount) is determined on the basis of the wages earned in the last 4-5 calendar quarters and is a part of the average salary earned. Millions of unemployed workers who lost their job due to involuntary reasons such as layoffs have been immensely benefited by this program in meeting basic expenditure until they find a job.

The “dole” as popularly known is open to every unemployed claimant. It is approved on the basis of satisfying multiple eligibility criteria, the most important being the reason for separation from the job. As stated earlier, workers who lose their job due to involuntary reasons qualify to receive unemployment insurance. Reasons such as downsizing, layoffs due to various reasons, company shutdown, reduction in the standard hours worked due to lack of demand are some of the most commonly accepted reasons, since it’s not the claimant’s fault.

The sections below aim to detail the circumstances under which unemployment compensation is denied and steps on how you can work it in your favor.

Unemployment Compensation Denial

When you make your first claim after being unemployed over the phone or on the internet, the claims team at the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, New Jersey process your claim and vet it against various conditions and make a decision to deny or approve the claim. If approved, you can continue applying for weekly claims as per the schedule to and get the payment. If denied, you would be mailed a letter by the department stating the grounds for denial and the options available further such as appealing the decision made.  

On the basis of the merits of the case and if you feel the claim was wrongfully denied, you can contact the Appeal Tribunal. It’s your right to file an appeal in response to rejection of compensation.

Common Reasons for Denial

Resigning from job

If you resigned from the job voluntarily, the claim will be a straightforward reject. The cornerstone of offering these benefits is to monetarily compensate the job loss until a new one is found.  

Fired due to misconduct/underperformance

Issues such as under performance or behavioral issues can also be held against you by the employer when you apply, resulting in denial since it can hamper the standard business operations of the company. Being fired for attending work under the influence of alcohol/drugs, threatening co-workers or supervisors are not acceptable.

Eligibility conditions not met

Criteria such as minimum income requirement or continuity in employment during the base period (last 12 calendar quarters) is important. If the claim does not pass through these conditions, compensation will be denied. Therefore, it’s important to understand the prevailing eligibility conditions in New Jersey before applying for benefits.

Appealing an unemployment denial in New Jersey

The Appeal Tribunal is the first level of appeal within the department, responsible for hearing disputes relating to unemployment compensation and settling them amicably. As per applicable rules in the Unemployment Compensation Law and Temporary Disability Law of New Jersey, it’s the right of every claimant to appeal the determination of non-entitlement of benefits.

  • The appeal can be filed in two ways. You can visit the nearest Unemployment Office in your locality and file within 10 days from the determination date.
  • Else, you can also send a mail to the address provided within 7 days from the receipt of the determination letter.
  • The appeal accompanied by relevant documents can also be faxed to the number provided in the last section of this article.
  • If you’re filing the appeals by mail, it should contain the SSS of the claimant, reference to the determination being appealed along with an explanation of the grounds for doing so.
  • If there is a delay in filing the appeal, an explanation letter citing the reason should be provided. The Appellate Tribunal has the right to dismiss appeals received late without a good cause.
  • On the basis of the incoming paperwork and schedule of the office, the Appeals Examiner will conduct a hearing at the designated office with all the parties involved.
  • In case of compelling situations, the Examiner may decide to summon the parties and the witnesses over the phone to conduct a telephone hearing.

Points to remember

  • You may be required to continue to file weekly claims during the dispute period. If the dispute is settled in your favor, claims will be settled retrospectively. Make sure to inquire about filing weekly claims at the time of filing the appeal.
  • You can seek a legal counsel at your expense. Free legal counsel services are also provided from the community.
  • Be sure to know the hearing dates and attend them promptly since failure to do so can result in decision going against the claimant.
  • If not satisfied with the outcome, the claimant has the right to further appeal, to be filed within 20 days from the date of decision.
Contact Details

Fax: (609) 292-2438

Email: appealtribunal@dol.state.nj.us

 

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Posted in New Jersey Unemployment Guide
47 comments on “New Jersey Unemployment Appeals Process
  1. Sarah says:

    My company has asked that I do something illegal for the last few years, which I’ve been doing. I feel it is going to catch up to me somehow, and have decided to leave my job because of it. Can I collect if that’s my situation?

    • Nick says:

      This is a tricky situation. When you apply, they will ask you to mention the reason for resignation and if you tell them there was something illegal going on, you may in trouble.

  2. Dawn says:

    I was denied unemployment benefits in Dec 2016 because my employer said I quit but I did not. I filed an appeal in Feb 2017 & I won last week. Can my employer appeal the Appeal Tribunals decision?

  3. Jose Laracuente says:

    I won my hearing and got a letter from the unemployment agency.now my ex employer has until December 04 to appeal.now on the appeal letter i did not get a date to claim my next payments.must i call or wait for another clain letter to come.

    • Jacob says:

      Please call the Claims Center/Adjudicator for further steps. Make sure to chase at regular intervals for an update.

  4. Rob says:

    Received my decision for appeals was denied. Can you appeal the tribunal appeal decision ? What are the next steps ??

  5. Ming says:

    How long does it take from mailing in an appeal to getting the appeal interview?

    • Jacob says:

      Ming,

      I am not sure of the timelines. Please call the adjudicator or the Claims Center on the phone numbers provided.

  6. Sasha says:

    For me it took 3 weeks to get an appeal hearing. But I filed my appeal online so it could go quicker I stead of snail mail. I have my appeal hearing tomorrow hopefully it will work out in my favor as they say I voluntarily quit but it was to pursue another job. So this should be good …. I was wondering if i won my case how long it would take for my first payout. I don’t this website could provide that information so I guess I’ll try to come back to update you guys.

    • Jacob says:

      Sasha,

      We do not have specific info on the timelines. When you go to the hearing, you can ask the representative. Best wishes and do come back and update us.

  7. Dina says:

    How do I get to go before an arbitrator with my past employer. I have been denied my claim because I called the office, told them I would be late, and was not paid for the two hours that I was detained. (I went on a job interview as I was told prior that my hours may be cut). My supervisor asked me if I went for an interview and, of course, I said no. I wasn’t getting paid-she OK my coming late so I felt that it way personal. She texted me the next day and fired me. I was a great worker and I will bring a previous employee to state that in front of them. I always did my work and even got a bonus.

    • Jacob says:

      Dina,

      This is a tricky situation. Approach an arbitrator and keep supporting documents handy. You will be called for a hearing during which you can present facts and timelines to prove your stance.

  8. FRANCA FLORIO says:

    i collected for 26 weeks. i have been looking for part time work, but no luck.
    I have back & neck problems and would like to work from home getting up as much as i can. Money is very scarse and i’m scared that i will not be able to live at this going rate. My question, could i appeal or considered an extention even if its a minimul. Thank you!

    • Jacob says:

      Franca,

      I can understand your situation. As much as I am aware, there is no extension available. Please call the Unemployment Office in your state to inquire about the availability of state-sponsored extension.

      • Mrs Renee Williams Daniels says:

        I am filing an appeal for an extension for my unemployment benefits because I have been incapable of gaining employment during my 13- week term of unemployment and I am applying for emergency unemployment extension please until I obtain employment.

  9. Luba says:

    I won my appeal a week ago. But when I file for my weekly benefits I am still not getting paid.

    How long it takes before they release the funds?

    • Jacob says:

      Luba,

      If you were asked to continue making weekly claims, please do so. For payment information, please call the Claims Center and speak to a representative.

  10. Jasmine says:

    Is someone only allowed to file a claim on their last day of work? Or can someone apply a few days before their last day?

    • Jacob says:

      Jasmine,

      You can file immediately after your last working day. Please call the Unemployment Office for more.

  11. james ruso says:

    I filed an appeal but its to much of a hassle. Can I withdraw my appeal.

  12. Taylor Bannon says:

    HI, I work in a casino as an on-line dealer, but it still in the casino and there is person to person contact. Anyway we were told we were going to be closing any day but they did not have an actual date. So they said we are laying people off but you can stay an extra day or too. well since i knew i was going to be staying with my family where i have a 2yrl little sister i decided it was important to leave so i had time to self quarantine before i went to my moms for the duration of this out break. They told us we can go ahead an apply for unemployment and they would approve it. well i applied ad was denied. i filed an appeal and i received a letter stating they will contact me within two week . we they have not and there is no way to contact the at all. i tried every possible way and nothing. a week after i left my job one of my supervisors tested positive for the covid-19 virus. what should i do? i ha no income whatsoever and my landlord thinks i’m lieing and my other bill or about to get shut off if i don’t pay soon. please help. i need answers. what can i do?

    • Jacob says:

      Taylor,

      I can understand your situation. Please be patient since there will be thousands of files for the office to clear. You can keep checking at regular intervals.

  13. Frank Luciano says:

    I’m an independent outside consultant and filed for unemployment back in April as part of the CARES Act. After 8-weeks of delay, I was finally awarded the minimum NJ benefit of $231/week as they said they couldn’t verify my earnings. Per procedure, I filed an appeal with my tax returns, etc. showing that I should be receiving the max $713 and it’s now been over a month since I filed that appeal with no communication/change in benefit given. How long should this appeal process take??

    • Jacob says:

      Frank,

      It might take a few days to a couple of weeks due to the pendency. Please be patient and keep chasing at regular intervals.

  14. Anna says:

    Hello — after a hearing conducted over the phone, I received a letter saying that I am “not ineligible for benefits” for the stated period of time and that also I may be eligible for PUA benefits. It also tells me to follow the posted schedule to claim future weeks — but how do I collect the benefits that were denied to me in the past and now deemed eligible for payment? As everyone is aware, there’s no way to get through anywhere via phone.

  15. Jess says:

    Hi,
    I was collecting unemployment since June. I had contracted Covid-19 and my job would not allow me to take time off to rest. My job also would not allow employees to work from home during the pandemic and also did not require employees to social distance or wear masks in the office. I ended up quitting due to these reasons. My claim was approved and I began collecting payments in June. However, this week I received a letter stating that I did not supply proof that I had contracted covid and my benefits have been disqualified. However, I had submitted all doctor paperwork back in June on my application. I am confused why all of a sudden I am being disqualified. I filed an appeal but I am not sure what else to do. Could this be an error?

    • Jacob says:

      Jess,

      It might due to miscommunication. Please email the documents right away and follow up until you have a concrete update.

  16. GT says:

    Hi,
    I was collecting unemployment during the corona virus the 26 weeks and then the 13 weeks but told that I dont qualify for the 20 weeks due to not making 40 times my benefit rate….. After reviewing my pay stubs I calculated that they did not do the math correctly. I submitted my pay stubs and wrote them two letters one mailed and another emailed but have not heard anything back… They have not answered the appeal nor answered the phone to discuss the reasoning of their recent denial. Please advise on what I can do now. Thanks

    • Jacob says:

      GT,

      The Unemployment Office might be inundated with pending requests. Please visit the website to find the answers or wait for a response. Also consider the option of visiting an office in the vicinity if feasible.

  17. andre says:

    answer a wrong answer and the cut off my unemployment

    • Jacob says:

      Andre,

      Please speak to a claims representative to find a fix. You can also consider visiting an office in the vicinity if safe.

  18. Kenny Haliburton says:

    How do I reopen an appeal ? I was instructed to reopen my appeal at passaicap@DOL.NJ.GOV

  19. Johnny says:

    I won my appeal which I had last week when I go to file my weekly payment it still says not updated how long until they update in the system

    • Jacob says:

      Johnny,

      Hope you’ve received some form of concrete update by now. If not, please chase your adjudicator regularly.

  20. TB says:

    i haven’t gotten my benefits yet its been 5 weeks now after my appeal was approved in my favor

    • Jacob says:

      I can understand your situation. There will be a delay considering the number of applications that are being processed. Please continue chasing the office/check your status online at regular intervals until payments normalize.

  21. Joanna says:

    Hey, I had an appeal in my favor, is been over 2 months and 1 still haven’t heard about my payments. I try to call, but nobody picks up and I don’t know what to do or where to check at this point.

    • Jacob says:

      Joanna,

      Please consider the option of visiting an office in the vicinity if safe and feasible (for possibly a better response).

    • Anthony Crescenzo says:

      I’ve been waiting since I won mine too. Since Sept 03, 2021.

      • Jacob says:

        Anthony,

        Hope you were able to get to the bottom of this. If not, please make sure to follow up with your adjudicator regularly until you have a concrete update.

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