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LEO | New Coaching Session Walks Claimants Through Their Determination Letters

Michigan Business Network
June 13, 2024 10:00 AM

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Workers, employers receive a Monetary Determination explaining whether a claim has been allowed or denied

When you file for unemployment, the first letter you receive from the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) states whether you are approved or denied for benefits. But how did the UIA make that determination? A new coaching session aims to help claimants understand the Monetary Determination letter everyone receives after applying for benefits.

Understanding Your Monetary Determination is the second in a growing series of online group coaching sessions by trained, professional UIA staff. These sessions provide practical information to help workers better understand the process of filing for unemployment benefits.    

“Over the past year the UIA has focused on launching innovative solutions to help workers navigate the filing process,” said UIA Director Julia Dale. “This new coaching session is designed to empower individuals with the knowledge they need to understand our decisions and take appropriate actions. Our experienced staff are here to answer questions and support claimants.”

A Monetary Determination letter, or Form UIA 1575C, is a key document in the filing process for workers and their employers to understand. Most importantly, it explains whether a claim has been allowed or denied based on the wages earned, how a Weekly Benefit Amount (WBA) is calculated, and the number of benefit weeks allowed. The letter also list previous employers and earnings, and the reason given for leaving previous jobs. Finally, it explains the registration and work search requirements, which week to begin certifying for benefits, and a claimant’s rights to protest the UIA’s determination.

Understanding Your Monetary Determination Letter coaching sessions are scheduled from 11 a.m. to noon every Thursday. Time is allowed throughout the presentation for attendees to ask questions. Those interested in participating in the coaching session can sign up by going to the Online Coaching Sessions page at Michigan.gov/UIA.

“Building on the success of our First-time Filer Coaching Sessions and the popular UIA Claimant Roadmap, this new coaching session is an important piece of our agency reform initiatives to provide timely assistance for workers across the state,” said Director Dale. “We know losing a job can be an incredibly stressful time for workers and we are committed to providing practical resources to ease the process and help workers regain their footing.”  

First-time Filer Coaching Sessions are also held online in a group setting. Since they were launched last August, more than 2,300 filers have signed up to participate in a free session. Claimants do not have to attend a Coaching Session to receive benefits.

UIA is creating solutions for Michigan’s workers

The Coaching Sessions are innovative resources for workers developed by the UIA in a sweeping effort to create an agency that is a national model for fast, fair, and fraud-free service. Among the recent changes are:

  • The UIA Claimant Roadmap is a six-step guide to applying for and understanding benefits. The roadmap is an easy-to-follow, user-friendly resource that can be found at Michigan.gov/UIAClaimantRoadmap.
  • A new computer system, called MiUI, is to launch in 2025 to replace the decade-old MiWAM that workers use to file for benefits. MiUI will speed claim filing, provide a user-friendly interface, and add robust anti-fraud processes.
  • Ten UIA staff members are assigned to regions across Michigan through the UIA Community Connect program to provide hands-on help for workers navigating the unemployment insurance application process. They also connect workers and employers to UIA’s outreach and education resources.
  • The UIA Economic Dashboard includes granular data about underlying trends in unemployment insurance in Michigan. The dashboard provides a rich understanding of the impacts of unemployment across industries, occupations, and communities. It also highlights which sectors are experiencing layoffs, claimant demographics, and the regions most affected. You can take a deep dive into the data at Michigan.gov/UIAEconomicDashboard.
  • Six new advocates have been added to the Advocacy Program to provide free legal advice to workers who appeal UIA redeterminations.

Modernizing, transforming the UIA is top priority

Since being named by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in October 2021 to lead the UIA, Director Dale – the agency's 11th director in as many years – has launched initiatives to modernize the agency, including:

  • Renovating five UIA Local Offices to create an improved user experience and make security upgrades. The offices undergoing construction are in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing, Saginaw, and Sterling Heights.
  • Expanding the window to schedule appointments to 14 days. Go to Michigan.gov/UIA to schedule a phone, virtual, or in-person appointment at one of 12 Local Offices up to 14 days in advance.
  • Forming a coalition of thought leaders from the labor, business, and jobless advocate communities as part of the UIA Modernization Workgroup to provide insight on significant improvements in how the agency can better serve Michigan workers and employers.
  • Launching the Employer Help Center, a plain language guide answers employers’ questions on unemployment tax and claim issues and UIA programs. The innovative Help Center can be found at Michigang.gov/UIAEmployerHelpCenter.
  • Creating a Legal and Compliance Bureau to leverage collaborative anti-fraud practices to pursue bad actors who steal taxpayer money. 
  • Extending through 2024 nearly 80 limited term employees in the Fraud and Investigations Division.
  • Requiring new ethics and security clearance policies for employees and contractors.
  • Partnering with the Michigan Department of Attorney General, and local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies to stop fraud. Since March 2020, 162 criminals have been charged with unemployment fraud, 91 have been convicted, and 72 sentenced to prison and ordered to pay restitution.
  • Scoring 100 percent for the third year in a row from the USDOL, meeting the reasonable assurance of quality benchmark for employer audits in 2022, 2021, and 2020.
  • Reassigning staff and resources to address the largest categories of claims contributing to the agency’s case backlogs.
  • Rebuilding the UI Trust Fund to more than $2.7 billion (and growing). Weekly benefits are paid to workers from the Trust Fund, which is supported by taxes on employers.
  • Halting overpayment collections on claims filed since March 1, 2020, while the agency addresses pending protests and appeals.

Need help or have questions about a claim?

Meet with an agent: Schedule an in-person, phone, or virtual meeting at Michigan.gov/UIA.

Chat with an agent: Log into your MiWAM account during normal business hours.

Call Customer Service: 1-866-500-0017 during normal business hours.

Ask Ava: Our chatbot at Michigan.gov/UIA can answer many questions.

Find answers: FAQs, videos, toolkits, and other resources at Michigan.gov/UIA.


LEO Mission and Vision. Visit Michigan.gov/LEO to learn more.

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