Iowa Workforce Development Unveils Mobile Option for Filing Weekly Unemployment Insurance Claims

Iowa Workforce Development Communications
For Immediate Release
Date: February 26, 2016
Contact: Courtney Greene
Telephone: 515-281-9646
Email:  courtney.greene@iwd.iowa.gov

DES MOINES, IOWA – Iowa Workforce Development (IWD) Unemployment Insurance Division is making it easier and more convenient for Iowans to file weekly unemployment insurance claims using a mobile device. 

Recent upgrades now allow Iowans to use a smart phone or tablet, in addition to a computer, to file weekly (continuing) unemployment insurance claims and review their benefit status online. Note: New or initial unemployment insurance claims must be filed on a computer, due to the number of questions and amount of information required to set up a new account.

IWD shared news of the improvements ahead of the Oct. 1, 2016, deadline, when the Unemployment Insurance Division will phase out the telephone filing option and ask Iowans to file online. The enhanced tool is available in English and Spanish.

Claimants follow these simple steps to file weekly unemployment insurance claims and check benefit status on a mobile device or tablet:

IWD announced in July it was phasing out the telephone filing option effective Oct. 1, 2016. Claimants who do not have access to a computer, tablet or mobile device will still receive assistance over the phone from Customer Service representatives so they can still receive unemployment insurance services without interruption.

Ryan West, UI Division Officer, said providing the mobile option will make it easier for individuals to file a weekly unemployment insurance claim and review their benefit status. 

“For many people, their smart phone or tablet is their computer,” West said. “This enhanced option will allow Iowans to easily check their unemployment insurance benefit status and file their continued weekly unemployment insurance claims securely, timely and accurately.”

West said the online option will help to ensure more timely and accurate unemployment insurance benefit payouts to individuals. A verified record of filing is provided with a time and date stamp.

“In addition, we’re revising the continued claim form to help individuals submit accurate work search documentation in an effort to help them find steady employment.”

West said employers and businesses will also reap benefits with the focus on online filing.

“We are committed to driving down administrative costs in the unemployment insurance benefits system,” West said. “The integrity of the unemployment insurance trust fund will be maintained by reducing incidents of fraud by eliminating improper payments, helping to lower employers’ taxes and helping to drive down administrative costs in the unemployment insurance benefits system.”

If individuals do not have access to a computer, a limited number of Customer Service representatives are available to process claims over the phone. The Unemployment Insurance Customer Service number is 1-866-239-0843. Representatives are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

“We are excited to offer a mobile option to make it easy for all Iowans to submit their unemployment insurance claims filings online,” West said. “It is only natural we move to primarily an online system for filing unemployment insurance claims to mirror job searching practices of submitting job applications online.” 

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