Maryland Agency looking to expand Unemployment Insurance Program

Date: July 15, 2020

Department of Labor pushing their Work Sharing Program to employers

A little-known program in the Maryland Department of Labor is hoping to play an outsized role in economic recovery.

The program, officially known as the Work Sharing Unemployment Insurance Program, was created in 1984. It is a voluntary program that provides an alternative to layoffs for employers faced with a temporary, non-cyclical decline in business due to lower economic activity.

It allows employees to return to work part time while still drawing partial unemployment benefits. Costs are covered by the federal government and Maryland companies enrolled in the program do not face an increase in their unemployment insurance taxes.

Under current rules, employers can participate if they reduce employees’ hours by 20 to 50 percent but efforts are underway to expand the window to cover reductions between 10 and 60 percent. Such a range is allowed under federal guidelines.

You can visit the Department of Labor’s website for more information on the program  here.

Please reach out to your Maryland team with any questions or suggestions – State Director, Mike O’Halloran at [email protected] and Grassroots Manager, Sharon Sykes at [email protected]

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