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Turner Legislation To Refine Unemployment Benefit Instructions Clears Senate

Would Require Employers To Include Information Detailing Time Sensitivity Of Filing Claim

TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senator Shirley K. Turner (D-Mercer) that would refine unemployment benefit instructions has cleared the full Senate.

“Filing an unemployment claim should not be a harrowing experience that discourages people from making claims,” said Senator Turner. “Individuals who have lost their jobs need these benefits to support themselves and their families. Making the filing process easier is one small way to better assist those who have been unfortunate enough to lose their job.”

The bill, S2580, would require employers to include information detailing the time sensitivity of filing a claim for unemployment benefits in the unemployment benefit instructions that they must provide to a worker at the time the worker becomes unemployed. Currently, the law requires the Department of Labor and Workforce Development to provide unemployment filing instructions to employers, who by law are required to supply the information to employees. The Department’s information, however, does not include detailed information about the time sensitivity of filing a claim for unemployment benefits.

Specifically, the legislation would require that the benefit instructions given to the worker include, but not be limited to, the date upon which the worker becomes unemployed, and, in the case that the unemployment is temporary, the date upon which the worker is recalled to work, and that the individual may lose some or all of the benefit to which he or she is entitled if he or she fails to file a claim in a timely manner. Finally, the bill would require each employer to give each worker at the time he/she becomes unemployed, for any reason, whether the unemployment is permanent or temporary, a printed copy of the benefit instructions.

The legislation was approved Thursday by a vote of 39-0. It now moves to the Assembly for consideration.

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