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(1) The department may pay benefits to a claimant engaged in a state-approved training program.

(2) The department shall consider the curriculum, facilities, staff and other essentials necessary to insure that a training program has the capacity to achieve the training program's objectives, including appropriate standards and practices regarding satisfactory attendance and performance of trainees. State-approved training programs may include, but are not limited to, the following:

(a) job search workshops;

(b) vocational or technical training, including basic education required as a prerequisite to such training;

(c) vocationally directed academic courses;

(d) job training programs authorized under the Workforce Investment Act of 1998;

(e) training programs designed to upgrade claimant's skills to meet technological or other advances in the claimant's occupational field; or

(f) training programs designed to improve claimant's employability by enhancing claimant's aptitudes or skills for a demand occupation.

(3) The department shall consider the following criteria when determining claimant's qualification for training benefits:

(a) claimant's basic work skills, the lack of which may be demonstrated by a history of repeated periods of unemployment;

(b) claimant's history of recent employment that paid federal or state minimum wage;

(c) claimant's lack of formal vocational training or lack of a marketable degree from an educational institution of higher learning;

(d) the diminished value of claimant's skills in the labor market due to changes in technology or major reductions in the industry in which claimant was employed;

(e) claimant's inability to work in the claimant's customary occupation due to documented, long-term physical or mental disabilities;

(f) claimant's reasonable expectation that training will result in higher wages and more secure employment; and

(g) claimant's reasonable expectation for successful completion of the training program, as demonstrated by:

(i) claimant's interest in and aptitude for the course of study to be pursued; and

(ii) claimant's willingness to commit sufficient time to ensure completion of the training.

(4) For up to 30 days prior to the start of a state-approved training program, the department shall consider a claimant to be in training after the department approves the training application, even though training may not have started.

(5) The department shall not disqualify a claimant under the provisions of 39-51-2302, MCA, when the claimant voluntarily leaves employment within 30 days of resuming participation in a state-approved training program.

(6) Upon the department's written approval of a claimant for a state-approved training program, the department shall notify the claimant of the availability of additional training benefits, pursuant to ARM 24.11.476.

(7) The department shall not charge an experience-rated employer's account, as defined by 39-51-1214, MCA, for benefits paid to a claimant who is qualified to receive benefits under this rule.

History: 39-51-301, 39-51-302, MCA; IMP, 39-51-2116, 39-51-2307, 39-51-2401, MCA; Eff. 12/31/72; AMD, 1988 MAR p. 2723, Eff. 1/1/89; TRANS, from ARM 24.11.412, Eff. 1/1/89; AMD, 1992 MAR p. 2076, Eff. 9/11/92; AMD, MAR p. 573, Eff. 5/29/11; AMD, 2013 MAR p. 413, Eff. 3/29/13.

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