In brief

Governor orders temporary expansions in unemployment eligibility and cost-sharing

LANSING — Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently signed Executive Order 2020-24, clarifying how the expansion of eligibility for unemployment benefits during the COVID-19 will work.

The order:

Suspends the requirement for an individual seeking unemployment to request a registration and work search waiver from their employer;

Allows anyone with an active unemployment claim to receive up to a six-week benefit extension.

Expands cost-sharing with employers. Any benefit paid to a claimant that is laid off or placed on a leave of absence will not be charged to the employer’s accounts, but instead will be pooled and assumed by the Nonchargeable Benefits Component of employer accounts. Employers who unlawfully misclassify their workers and have underpaid their unemployment tax do not get the benefit of this enhanced cost-sharing.

Executive Order 2020-24 takes the place of Executive Order 2020-10. — G.G.

Whitmer signs order temporarily allowing hearings by video conference

LANSING — Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently signed Executive Order 2020-23, which temporarily allows the Michigan Employment Relations Commission, Unemployment Insurance Agency, and other administrative hearings to be held by video conference or phone in place of in-person hearings. The order also temporarily allows e-signatures in place of written signatures on related documents.

Administrative hearing notifications, normally made in person, temporarily can be made by mail or email under the order. — G.G.