Skip to Main Content

Issues, Disqualifying Reasons and Penalties - Unemployment Insurance

The information below describes issues that may be associated with your unemployment insurance (UI) claim, and, if applicable, the types of penalties that may result from the issue. To see if there is an issue with your claim, select “Eligibility Issues'' from the left menu in your BEACON 2.0 claimant portal.

BEACON 2.0 claimant portal

ABLE AND AVAILABLE
To be eligible for UI benefits, you must be able and available for full-time work without restrictions. If you do not meet this requirement, your benefits will be denied until you are able and available for full-time work without restrictions.

NOTE: If defined as a part-time worker, you must be able and available for the required number of hours of part-time work. If you do not meet this requirement, your benefits will be denied until you are able and available for the required number of hours of part-time work.

To learn more, see the Claims Filing - Weekly Claims Certifications FAQs.

ACTIVE SEARCH FOR WORK
You must make an adequate active search for work to be eligible for benefits. Your benefits will be denied until you meet this requirement. To learn more, see Maryland Work Search Requirements.

ALIEN STATUS
This issue may impact your claim if you are not a citizen of the United States, and your alien status must be determined as required by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service to be eligible for UI benefits.

ATTENDING SCHOOL OR TRAINING
Your claim may have this issue if you indicated on your initial claim or weekly claim certification that:

  • you are currently attending school or training; and, 
  • the school or training may interfere with your availability to work.

DISCHARGED FROM EMPLOYMENT - If you were discharged from employment, your UI benefits may be delayed or denied. Depending on the reason you were discharged, there are three levels of misconduct under Maryland UI Law.

  • Simple Misconduct - Simple misconduct means a violation of some established rule or policy of the employer, a disregard of the employer’s best interests, a dereliction of duty, or a course of wrongful conduct.

    If you were discharged for simple misconduct, your benefits will be denied for 10 to 15 weeks.

  • Gross Misconduct - Gross misconduct means conduct that is either: a deliberate and willful disregard of standards of behavior; or showing a gross indifference to the employer’s interests or a series of repeated violations of employment rules.

    If you were discharged for gross misconduct, your benefits will be denied until you become reemployed and earn 25 times your weekly benefit amount in insured work.

  • Aggravated Misconduct -Aggravated misconduct is defined as behavior that consists of physical assault, property loss, or property damage so serious that neither simple nor gross misconduct penalties would apply.

    If you were discharged for aggravated misconduct, your benefits will be denied until you become reemployed and earn 30 times your weekly benefit amount in insured work.

EMPLOYMENT IN ATHLETICS (REASONABLE ASSURANCE)
If you are employed in a sports-related job and are out of work between seasons, but you will return to work when the next season starts, you are not eligible for benefits. You are ineligible because you have reasonable assurance of returning to work during the next athletic season.

To determine whether a claimant has reasonable assurance, the Division examines the type of communication the claimant received, who was involved in the communication, when the communication was issued, and the claimant’s work history.

FILING PROPER CLAIMS
If you did not file a timely weekly claim certification for each week that you are unemployed, your benefits will be denied (starting from the first week that you did not file a timely weekly claim certification). This denial will continue until the Saturday (week ending date) before the week that you contact the Division to reopen your claim. For example, if you contact the Division to reopen your claim on Wednesday, August 31, your denial will end on Saturday, August 27.

FRAUD
If you knowingly made a false statement or failed to give important facts in order to obtain or increase your UI benefit payments, you have committed UI fraud.

If the Division determines that you committed fraud, you will be disqualified from receiving UI benefits for one year and must repay all benefits you have received, plus interest. In addition, you may be subject to penalties including a $1,000 fine, and you may be prosecuted for fraud. To learn more about fraud, see the Benefit Payment Control FAQs.

FRAUD OVERPAYMENT
You will be charged with a fraud overpayment if the Division determines that you committed fraud, and that you must repay all benefits that you fraudulently received.

A 15% fraud penalty will be added to the amount of your overpayment. Interest will be assessed on both the benefits overpaid and the fraud penalty at the rate of 1.5% per month or 18% annually. For more information, see the Benefit Payment Control FAQs.

INSUFFICIENT BASE PERIOD WAGES
This issue will be attached to your claim ifthere is a question concerning your monetary eligibility for benefits. Claimants must earn enough wages in either the standard or alternate base periods to be eligible for UI benefits. To learn more about base periods and monetary eligibility, see the Claims Filing - Initial Claims FAQs.

LABOR DISPUTE (STRIKE)
If you are unemployed because of a labor dispute in which you (or a class of workers that you belong to):

  • have a direct interest;
  • are participating; or
  • are financing; 

your benefits will be denied (during the time period that you are not working due to a labor dispute).

LATE APPEAL OF ELIGIBILITY
Your claim will have this issue if you did not file your appeal within the required time period. Appeal deadlines are included on the determination notice. More information about filing an appeal with the Lower Appeals Division or the Board of Appeals is available on the Maryland Division of Unemployment Insurance (the Division) website.

LEAVE OF ABSENCE
If you are unemployed because you are on a leave of absence and may be unavailable for work, your benefits will be denied (while you are on the leave of absence and unavailable for and/or unable to work).

MEETING REPORTING REQUIREMENTS
If you fail to:

your benefits will be denied until you contact the Division or participate in the required DWDAL program.

MILITARY BENEFIT ENTITLEMENT
Your claim may have this issue if you recently separated from the military and it must be determined if you are eligible for federal unemployment insurance benefits.

MONETARY ELIGIBILITY
Your claim will have a monetary eligibility issue if:

  • you worked full or part-time during a week and you earned more than you reported; 
  • you received holiday pay, vacation pay, special payment, bonus or severance pay; or,
  • there is a question concerning your monetary eligibility for benefits or dependents' allowance.

NOT UNEMPLOYED
Your claim will have this issue if you:

  • worked full-time during a week and earned more than your weekly benefit amount;
  • worked full-time during a week and earned less than your weekly benefit amount; or
  • were self-employed on a full-time basis, regardless of whether you earned any money.

Your benefits will be denied if you are working full-time.

OPTION TO FILE IN OTHER STATE
Your claim will have this issue if you may be eligible for benefits in another state that you worked in during the base period. To learn more about the base period, see Claims Filing - Initial Claims FAQs.

If you worked in more than one state and qualify for UI benefits in either state, you may only file in one state at a time. If you have a question about which state you should file a UI claim in, call a Maryland live claims agent at 667-207-6520. For more contact options, see the Division website.

OVERPAYMENT
You will be charged with an overpayment if you received UI benefits for which you are not eligible.

You will not receive UI benefits until your overpaid benefits are repaid. For more information about overpayments, see the Benefit Payment Control FAQs.

PENSION
If you are receiving, have received, or will receive a lump sum pension or monthly pension (from an employer you worked for during your base period), your weekly benefit amount may be reduced by the amount of your pension. To learn more about base periods and monetary eligibility, see the Claims Filing - Initial Claims FAQs.

You must report the amount of any pension you receive on your initial claim or weekly claim certification. The Division will determine if your pension will impact your benefit payments.

RAILROAD OR OTHER STATE ELIGIBILITY
If you have applied for, or are receiving, benefits under the laws of another state or federal program (such as railroad unemployment insurance), your Maryland regular UI benefits will be denied (as long as you receive benefits under that law.)

REFUSED JOB OR JOB REFERRAL
If you fail to apply for available, suitable work or if you fail to accept such work when offered to you, your benefits will be denied:

  • for 5 to 10 weeks (if there are mitigating circumstances); or,
  • until you become reemployed and earn at least 10 times your weekly benefit amount in covered employment.

SCHOOL EMPLOYMENT (REASONABLE ASSURANCE)
If you work for an educational institution, you may not be eligible for benefits during the period between academic years or during a vacation period if you have reasonable assurance that you will be employed when the academic year resumes/the next academic year begins.

To determine whether a claimant has reasonable assurance, the Division examines the type of communication the claimant received, who was involved in the communication, when the communication was issued, and the claimant’s work history.

SECOND BENEFIT YEAR ELIGIBILITY
If you haven’t worked since your benefit year began and your benefit year has expired, you are not eligible for benefits until you:

  • become reemployed; and
  • Earn at least 10 times your new weekly benefit amount in covered employment. Example: If your weekly benefit amount for the new Benefit Year would be $175, you must have earned $1750 since your first Benefit Year began.

Note: Your benefit year is a one-year period that starts on the Sunday of the first week in which you file your initial claim. For example, if you filed your initial claim on Friday, March 6, 2020, your benefit year would start on Sunday, March 1, 2020.

SEVERANCE PAY
If you received or will receive severance pay, dismissal pay, [or] wages in lieu of notice, you will not receive UI benefit payments until your severance/dismissal pay is exhausted.

Severance payments are deductible from UI benefits based on the number of weeks of your regular wage that they cover. Once your severance payments are exhausted, if you are otherwise eligible, your benefits may be paid.

SUPPORT OBLIGATIONS
If you are required by court order to pay child support, the child support will be deducted from your weekly unemployment insurance benefit amount.

VOLUNTARY QUIT EMPLOYMENT
If you voluntarily quit your job without good cause attributable to your employment, your benefits will be denied:

  • until you become reemployed, and you earn at least 15 times your weekly benefit amount in covered employment.

If you voluntarily quit your job with good cause attributable to your employment your benefits will be denied:

  • for five to 10 weeks.

WORK SHARING ENTITLEMENT
Your claim will have this issue if you are participating in a Work Sharing plan and there is a question about your eligibility for UI benefits under the Work Sharing Unemployment Insurance Program.

For more information about Work Sharing, see the Work Sharing Information for Employees FAQs.