Any workers who would be eligible to receive regular unemployment insurance benefits are eligible to participate in the WorkSharing Program. Seasonal layoffs, however, are not covered.
The WorkSharing Application and Approval Process
- Contact the Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA).
- The telephone number for WorkSharing is 617-626-5510. Fax: 617- 626-6222.
- Your application must be submitted online.
- DUA requires at least three-week lead-time for the application process.
- The WorkSharing Department will approve or deny your application within 15 business days following receipt of the plan.
- If your plan is approved, a DUA representative will contact you to discuss the implementation of the plan.
- If your plan is denied, the determination is final and cannot be appealed. However, you may submit another plan for approval at any time.
Step-by-step Instructions to Participate in WorkSharing
Step 1: Register Your Company for the WorkSharing system
Each company participating in WorkSharing needs to register their company using on-line business services before being able to apply. You will need your Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) ID number. Once you have your number you may register online. Through the registration process, you will choose the username and password you will use to access the WorkSharing application, as well as to fill out your weekly WorkSharing vouchers. Follow all instructions for registration, and be sure to select "WorkSharing" as you fill out the online registration form.
Step 2: Await your Registration Authorization Letter
After you register your company for on line business services, you will be mailed an authorization letter to the address on file with the DUA ID number you used to register. You will need to sign and fax back this letter, taking care to follow all instructions given. Once we receive this authorization letter, you will be registered for WorkSharing and be able to apply on line. The total timeframe for registration will take between eight and ten days.
Step 3: Apply for Worksharing
Once you have faxed back the authorization letter, you will receive an email informing you that you are now registered. You may then access the WorkSharing application, using the username and password you selected during registration. Follow all instructions in the application. Please note that under Massachusetts state law the start date of the plan must be three weeks from the date of application, so please select a start date accordingly. If you submit a start date earlier than three weeks in advance, we will contact you to inform you that the start date must be adjusted accordingly. This may delay the processing of your application.
Step 4: Have Employees fill out Unemployment Claim forms and await your WorkSharing Application Approval
In order to process your employees' WorkSharing claims, each employee must fill out Form 1941, the Unemployment Insurance Claim Form. In addition, all employees claiming a dependency allowance will have to fill out The Request for Dependency Allowance (Form 0330-I) file size 1MB , and attach it to their UI Claim (Form 1941 ). Once your employees have filled out these forms, gather them together and await your WorkSharing application approval. Do not have your employees submit this form independently or attempt to file for unemployment with their local unemployment office.
Step 5: Send in the Unemployment Insurance Claim forms and Request for Dependency Allowance forms
Once we receive word back on your application, we will contact you to let you know that your application has been either approved or denied. If you have been approved, you will be asked to send us all your employees' Unemployment Insurance Claim forms and Request for Dependency Allowance forms. Once we receive those, we will input your employees' claims, which will enable them to collect benefits. They will not be able to receive any unemployment benefits until these forms are processed.
Step 6: Begin Your Program
You must reduce your employees' hours in accordance with your WorkSharing plan once your program begins. From this point on, until the conclusion of your program, your employees must comply with the program each and every week. Keep a precise log of your participating employees' paid hours for each week. Failure to comply with the program precisely each week will result in the non-complying employees not receiving any benefits for those weeks that they fail to comply. Repeated failures to adhere to the plan will jeopardize your program, and can result in termination of the entire plan.
Step 7: Input Your First Voucher
Once your program has been approved, you may sign in to input your weekly vouchers. Because the first week of any unemployment claim is a waiting week under Massachusetts law, and due to the time required to input the claim forms, we ask that the first time you input vouchers, you do this on a bi-weekly basis, submitting the hours paid for both the first and second week of your program. This will allow us time to process your employees' forms before you input hours. In addition to inputting your employees' paid hours, you will also need to input any wages your employees earn from other jobs at non-WorkSharing participating employers they may have. To do so you will need to distribute the Low Earnings Report (Form 3561) to each employee that is earning wages from other employers. For each week that these employees earn additional wages they must report these wages to you using this form. Do not send this form to us, this is for your records. When you input the vouchers for that week, you will be able to report any additional wages that these employees earn for that week. Failure to include these additional earnings may result in overpayment of benefits.
Step 8: Continue to Input Vouchers
After your first voucher, you may continue to input vouchers on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, just as you did the first one. You must continue to accurately report hours and additional wages for each week. Failure to input these vouchers regularly will result in delayed payment
Step 9: Report any Changes or Concerns to us
Because WorkSharing is an employer initiated program, any concerns regarding lost, missing or inaccurate checks must be raised by the employer. If you must make changes to the plan after it has begun, you must contact your assigned contact person to discuss your options. Additionally, if despite the plan you end up laying off participating employees, you must contact your assigned Worksharing Representative and inform him/her that they have been removed from the program. If they are not removed from the WorkSharing plan, they will be unable to receive regular unemployment benefits.
To Contact WorkSharing
The WorkSharing Department
Charles F. Hurley Building
19 Staniford Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02114