WSR 19-18-021
[Filed August 28, 2019, 8:06 a.m.]
Subject of Possible Rule Making: Adjusting the hours unemployment claimants must be available for work in order to be eligible for unemployment benefits and updating factors used to determine suitable work. This preproposal statement of inquiry replaces WSR 19-11-095.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 50.12.010 and 50.12.040 provide general rule-making authority to the employment security department (ESD). RCW 50.12.042 provides specific rule-making authority regarding the requirement that unemployment claimants be able to work, available for work, and actively seek work. RCW 50.20.100 provides rule-making authority to determine what factors are used to determine suitable work.
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: Under current rules, unemployment claimants must be available for work during all the usual hours and days of the week customary for their occupation. This requirement can be unobtainable for some claimants who work in 24/7 professions, especially those claimants who have family caregiving responsibilities. Rule making is necessary to set a more obtainable standard. Additionally, rule making is necessary to include shifts of employment as a factor used to determine suitable work, consistent with Unemployment Insurance Program Letter No. 41-98.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: The United States Department of Labor (USDOL) reviews the state's administration of the unemployment insurance program to ensure conformity to federal statutes and regulations. The state has broad flexibility in the implementation of the unemployment insurance laws so long as conformity is maintained. The proposed regulations will be shared with USDOL prior to adoption.
Process for Developing New Rule: The proposed rule will be shared with stakeholders as identified through the standard rule-making process. ESD will solicit input and consider all comments in the development of the final rule.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Josh Dye, P.O. Box 9046, phone 360-890-3472, fax 844-652-7096, TTY relay 711, email, web site
August 28, 2019
Daniel Zeitlin
Employment System
Policy Director