From the Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA): Work Share is a program that permits employers to maintain operational productivity during declines in regular business activity instead of laying off workers. With the plan, rather than being laid off, eligible employees work a reduced number of hours in the work week and receive a portion of weekly unemployment benefits. By participating in Work Share, employers are able to retain trained employees and avoid the expense of recruiting, hiring and training new employees.
With the Work Share program, unemployment benefits are based on a percentage of the reduced hours of work and pay. The reduction in work hours must result in an equivalent reduction in wages.
Employers must meet and maintain the following requirements in order to participate in the Work Share program
- Unemployment must be current
- Experience account balance must have "positive reserve" *As a result of Executive Order 2020-10, UIA may approve a work share plan regardless of whether the employer has a positive reserve until April 14, 2020
- Must have paid wages for at least 12 of the previous work quarters
- Must not hire new employees into the affected work unit nor transfer employees into unit during a plan
- May not reduce hours of work below the number approved under a plan
- Must certify that participation in a plan is in lieu of a temporary lay-off which reduces employees' normal work hours by at least 15 percent but not more than 45 percent.