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(1) Benefit payments are charged to each employer who paid wages to the claimant during the base period. The charge will be based on the percentage of wages the employer paid to the claimant during the base period. For example, if the claimant earned 10 percent of the base period wages working for an employer, that employer would be chargeable for 10 percent of the benefits drawn by the claimant.

(a) If more than one separation of employment exists from the same base period employer, charges or relief of charges will be based on the reason for the most recent separation of employment occurring prior to the effective date of the claim. Any separation of employment occurring after the effective date of a claim will not result in relief of charges on that claim, but may on a subsequent claim, if the reason for separation of employment allows relief of charge.

(b) The department's determination concerning a separation of employment from a base period employer, which subjects the claimant to possible disqualification under provisions of 39-51-2302, 39-51-2303, or 39-51-2305, MCA, will determine if that employer's account will be charged.

(2) An employer has not reduced hours or wages as used in 39-51-1214, MCA, if continued work was available for the same number of hours prior to the date the initial claim was filed as at the time of most recent hire. If the claimant was hired on a part-time basis with no guaranteed hours, no reduction has occurred unless the wages paid or the hours available in the four week period following the filing date of the claim are at least 10 percent less than the wages paid or hours available in the four-week period prior to the filing date of the claim. A reduction for salaried employees is based on a reduction in salary only, not on a reduction in hours.

(3) When the first benefit check is issued, the department mails a "Potential Charge Notice" to the chargeable employer. This notice tells the employer that the benefits paid to the claimant will be charged to the employer's account unless the employer shows that the claimant was fired for misconduct or quit without good cause attributable to employment, pursuant to 39-51-2302 and 39-51-2303, MCA. The explanation of the separation must contain specific details of the separation, including copies of any supporting documents.

(a) As provided in 39-51-1214, MCA, the department reviews the information submitted by the employer and issues a determination notice stating whether the employer should be charged for the claimant's benefits.

(b) An employer has eight calendar days from the date of the notice to respond to the "Potential Charge Notice" and/or "Claim Filing and Potential Charge Notice." If an employer fails to show good cause for delay in responding to either notice, the employer forfeits the right to appeal the department's determination and waives the right to credit for any benefit overpayment that may result, in accordance with ARM 24.11.208.

(c) If the employer provides the department with information that justifies relief of charges, but the employer failed to provide separation information within the time limits of the notice, the department may not relieve the charges to the employer's experience-rated account.

(d) The employer may appeal the department's decision within ten days of mailing the determination as provided in 39-51-2402, MCA.

(4) Within 60 days of the end of each calendar quarter, the department mails to the employer a statement of benefits charged to the employer's account. This statement is the "Quarterly Statement of Benefits Paid" and is for informational purposes only since any appeal must be made from the "Potential Charge Notice" and shows:

(a) the claimant's name and social security number;

(b) the date on which the charges were effective; and

(c) the amount of benefits charged to the employer's account.

History: 39-51-301, 39-51-302, MCA; IMP, 39-51-1214, MCA; NEW, 1988 MAR p. 2723, Eff. 1/1/89; AMD, 1990 MAR p. 2181, Eff. 12/14/90; AMD, 1992 MAR p. 803, Eff. 4/17/92; AMD, 1994 MAR p. 2835, Eff. 10/30/94; AMD, 1995 MAR p. 1950, Eff. 10/1/95; AMD, 2002 MAR p. 1665, Eff. 6/14/02; AMD, 2006 MAR p. 2411, Eff. 10/6/06; AMD, 2013 MAR p. 2144, Eff. 11/15/13

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