What if I disagree with a Job Service decision?

Right of appeal

Employers and claimants have the right to appeal all notices, determinations, and decisions made by Job Service. The hearing is your opportunity to offer evidence and provide testimony in your case.

How do I file an appeal?

You may file your appeal online at UI ICE or by submitting a detailed appeal in writing. All requests must be filed with the Appeals Section of Job Service North Dakota on or prior to the deadline date listed in your determination or decision.

Written requests for appeal or bureau review may be delivered in person to any Job Service office, faxed to 701-328-2728 (claimant) or 701-328-1882 (employers), or mailed to: Appeals Section, P.O. Box 5507, Bismarck, North Dakota 58506-5507.

Scheduling a hearing

After filing your appeal you will receive written notification of the date and time of the hearing. You will also receive a Guide to Unemployment Insurance Appeals brochure explaining the appeals process and how to prepare for the hearing.

How are hearings done?

Hearings are typically conducted by telephone. This is for the convenience of the claimant, employer, and any witnesses who may participate in the hearing. You may request that the hearing be conducted in person. You must make your request known at the time you file your appeal or, at the earliest possible time, prior to the hearing. The appeals referee will review the case file and determine if the request for an in-person hearing will be granted.

Participants in a telephone hearing will be instructed to call the Appeals Section ten minutes before the time of the hearing. A toll-free telephone number to be used for this call is listed on your notice of hearing. Be prepared to give the telephone number where you can be reached and to give the name(s) and telephone number(s) of the witnesses who will testify on your behalf. The appeals referee will call back participants and conference these parties in for the hearing.

If your hearing is being conducted in person, be sure to report to the designated location at least ten minutes prior to the start of the hearing. The hearing notice will state the location of the hearing.

How to prepare

Use the time before the hearing to prepare to tell your side of the story. Be sure to review all documents sent to you that will used in the hearing. You may view the documents online using the UI ICE system.

If you wish, you may have an attorney represent you. If you choose to have an attorney represent you, please notify Job Service as soon as possible with the name of the attorney.

You may also want to have witness(es) testify on your behalf. Those who testify should have direct, firsthand knowledge of the facts of your case. An employer should have someone testify who was actually present or was a participant in the actions or events that caused the claimant's separation from employment or, in the case of employer liability, should have firsthand knowledge of the employer's business. If a witness is unavailable at the scheduled hearing time, immediately notify the appeals referee.

You may request that the referee issue a subpoena to compel a witness to attend if he or she is reluctant to testify. Documents pertaining to the case may also be subpoenaed, if you wish. The referee will determine whether the request is significant to the case. If a subpoena is necessary, you will not be charged the cost associated with issuing the subpoena. If the case involves unemployment insurance benefits, you may also have documents that will support your testimony such as statements of separation, attendance records, written warnings, etc. If the case involves an employer liability, you may submit tax records or other business-related documents to support your testimony.

The day of the hearing

The appeals referee typically schedules several hearings throughout the day so you must be on time. Hearings are informal but are conducted in an organized manner and typically last 30 to 45 minutes. The referee will ask questions designed to bring out the basic facts of the issue under appeal.

The hearing is conducted with all parties of interest. When necessary, witnesses may also participate in the hearing process. The employee, employer, and witnesses give testimony relevant to the case under oath. Each party has the opportunity to ask questions of the other party. Documents that are relevant to the case and support your testimony may be submitted into evidence for the referee to consider in making a decision. When all testimony is on the record, the hearing is closed and the referee will issue a decision.

What if I need to postpone the hearing?

If you are unable to attend the hearing at the scheduled time, you must notify the appeals referee immediately. Hearings may be postponed by the referee, but only for good cause which is at the discretion of the referee hearing your case. It is not sufficient to merely leave a message requesting postponement and assume it will be granted. Speaking with the referee and receiving a verbal confirmation that your request will be granted is your confirmation that your hearing will be rescheduled for a future date. If the referee has not informed you that your request will be granted then the original date and time of your hearing remains in effect. Postponements must be approved by the appeals referee assigned to your case or their designee.

If you do not make yourself available at the scheduled time, testimony will be taken from those who do respond. The referee will base the decision on the testimony and evidence given at the hearing. Because your testimony is very important, if you do not respond, you are jeopardizing your opportunity to present testimony and evidence regarding your case and, as a result, you are putting yourself at a great disadvantage.

What if I do not want to proceed with my hearing?

To withdraw your appeal, you must submit your request in writing or call the appeals unit toll free at 1-800-351-9098 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. CT, Monday through Friday.

Written decision

Following the conclusion of the hearing, you will receive the referee's written decision within 7 to 10 calendar days. Take special notice that your rights to further appeal are outlined in the referee's decision.

Further appeal rights

If you find the referee's decision unfavorable, you may request a bureau review of the decision. A bureau review is a review of the record as it currently stands, by the Executive Director of Job Service North Dakota.

In the case of an unemployment insurance benefits appeal, the review must be filed within 12 days of the date of mailing of the referee's decision. In cases involving an unemployment insurance tax matter, the request for review must be filed within 15 days of mailing of the referee's decision.