Glossary

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A

Able to Work
Able to Work is being physically and mentally able to perform the work you are seeking. You must have the health, endurance, and other physical and mental requirements necessary to perform suitable work for which you are qualified or can readily learn to perform, and which exists in the area where you are seeking work.
Account Number
A unique number sequence assigned to a checking or savings account holder by a bank or credit union.
Additional Payment
Additional payment is a payment an employer makes to an employee who is involuntarily separated from employment. Examples of an additional payment include wages paid to an employee instead of providing prior notice of a layoff (wages in lieu of notice) and severance pay given due to a company policy or based on years of service.

Individuals are disqualified from receiving benefits under Section 207.049 of the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act while receiving certain kinds of additional payment from their employer.
Alternative Trade Adjustment Assistance (ATAA)
Alternative Trade Adjustment Assistance is a program for trade-affected workers age 50 or older covered by a Trade Readjustment Assistance (TRA) petition that has been certified as ATAA eligible. Affected workers may have an option for a wage subsidy if they find a job within 26 weeks of their job separation. Please contact your local workforce center for eligibility information.
Amount Deposited
Amount Deposited is the amount after deductions that TWC sends to your direct deposit account (bank or credit union) or your TWC UI VisaŽ Debit Card account.
APO
APO is the Army Post Office.
Available for Work
Available for Work is being ready, willing, and able to accept any full-time suitable work. To be available for work you must:
  • Have adequate transportation
  • Have adequate child care arrangements (if you have children)
  • Be available for job interviews
  • Be willing to work all the days and hours required for the type of work you are seeking
  • Be willing to accept the usual rate of pay for a person of your qualifications and experience

B

Base Period
Base Period is the 12-month period of wages reported by employers that TWC uses to calculate your benefits. The base period is the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters before you filed your claim application. (Calendar quarters are three-month periods beginning with January, April, July, or October.)
Benefits Remaining
Benefits Remaining is the total amount of benefits you have left during your benefit year (your maximum possible benefits minus your benefits paid to date and any disqualification amount).
Benefit Year
Benefit Year is the yearlong period your Unemployment Benefits claim will be in effect.

Once your benefit year is in effect, the beginning and ending dates of the benefit year may not be changed. Your benefit year remains in effect for the specified period even if your claim changes in some way.

For example, if you receive all of your benefits before your benefit year ends, you may not receive additional benefits until your next benefit year begins. If you are disqualified from receiving benefits any time during your benefit year, you may not start a new benefit year until that benefit year ends.
Business Day
A Business Day is Monday - Friday from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M., Central Time. TWC is closed when the following holidays fall on a business day.

Holiday Date Observed
New Year's Day January 01
Martin Luther King Jr. Day 3rd Monday in January
President's Day 3rd Monday in February
Memorial Day 4th Monday in May
Independence Day July 04
Labor Day 1st Monday in September
Veteran's Day November 11
Thanksgiving Day 4th Thursday in November
Day after Thanksgiving 4th Friday in November
Christmas Eve December 24
Christmas Day December 25
Day after Christmas December 26

C

Cause of Action
Cause of action is a set of facts involving the person?s employment relationship that provides a basis for the person to sue the employer.
Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty (DD Form 214, Member 4 Copy)
The Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty (DD Form 214, Member 4 Copy) provides you with a concise record of your period of service with the Armed Forces at the time of your separation, discharge or change in military status (reserve/active duty).
Collective Bargaining Agreement
Collective bargaining agreement is a negotiated agreement between employers and the representatives of a unit of employees aimed at reaching agreements that regulate working conditions.
Combined-Wage Claim
A Combined-Wage Claim (CWC) is a claim that combines your base period wages when you have worked in more than one state. The CWC is established in the state where you apply for unemployment benefits. A CWC can be used to help you to qualify for benefits or to increase your benefit amount. The claim can be established in only one of the states where you worked. The state benefit amounts and eligibility requirements vary between the states.
Commuter Claimant
A commuter claimant is an individual who regularly commuted to Texas to work during the past 18 months and who plans to continue to seek work in Texas. The individual must commute from one of the states bordering Texas: New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana. A commuter claimant must register for work on TWC's job matching system, www.WorkInTexas.com.
Confirmation Number
Confirmation Number confirms that you submitted your claim application. Keep your Confirmation Number for your records.

D

Deductions
Deductions are money TWC withholds from your weekly benefit amount. Common deductions include federal tax withholding, overpayments, and child support payments.
Direct Deposit
Direct deposit is a method of payment which electronically credits your checking or savings account.
Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA)
Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) are federally funded benefits that may be available to you if the President signed a federal disaster declaration and you lost your job as a direct result of a disaster such as flooding, tornadoes, hurricanes, etc. You may also qualify if you were unable to begin a new job or lost work time because of the disaster.
Disqualification Amount
Disqualification Amount is benefits you cannot be paid due to certain types of disqualification. For example: If you were disqualified for four weeks because you quit to move with your spouse and your weekly benefit amount was $200, then the disqualification amount would be $800. Your maximum possible benefits are unchanged, but your benefits remaining would be reduced by the disqualification amount.
Disqualified
Disqualified means that you are prevented from receiving benefits. Common reasons for being disqualified are a claimant's reason for leaving the last work, refusing to accept suitable work, or knowingly giving false information to obtain or increase a benefit.

You may end the disqualification and receive benefits if you successfully appeal the disqualification or if you:
  • Enter employment after your disqualification begins; and
  • Earn wages equal to six times your weekly benefit amount, or work at least 30 hours a week for six weeks; and
  • Become partially or totally unemployed through no fault of your own; and
  • Give TWC proof of your work or earnings and request that we close the disqualification.
Duty Station
Duty Station is where you worked for a federal employer in a civilian capacity.

E

Earnings
All compensation from full-time, part-time, or temporary work, including contract labor, commissions, tips, or self-employment profits. Earnings also include vacation or holiday pay if you are on temporary layoff or on vacation from a current job.
  • Report all earnings for the week in which you earn them, not when the employer pays you.
  • Report your total earnings before deductions (gross pay), not your "take home" pay.
  • Report your earnings and hours for each claim week, beginning on a Sunday and ending on a Saturday, regardless of your actual workweek.
  • If you are self-employed, report your profits. This is the net amount you make above your expenses. If you worked but do not have profits to report, answer that you worked or earned wages and report zero dollars ($0) earned.
Effective Date
Effective Date of your claim is the Sunday on or before the day you submit your claim application. For example, if you submit your claim application on Friday, the effective date of your claim is the previous Sunday. If you submit your claim on a Sunday, that date is the effective date.

F

Federal Tax Withholding
Federal Tax Withholding is an option TWC gives to claimants. Unemployment Benefits are taxable. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires you to report your benefits as income.

If you request federal tax withholding, TWC will deduct 10 percent of your weekly benefit amount from your benefits payment and send that deduction to the IRS. To begin federal tax withholding, complete and return the tax withholding form TWC mailed to you.
First Date You Worked
First Date You Worked is the date that you started working for your employer in the most recent employment period.
FPO
FPO is the Fleet Post Office.

G

Good Standing
Good Standing is a status indicating that a union member has fulfilled the requirements for membership in the union organization and has neither voluntarily withdrawn from membership nor been expelled or suspended from membership.

H

Hiring Hall or Placement Service
Hiring Hall or Placement Service is a union-operated placement service where jobs from various employers are allotted to registered applicants.
Holiday Pay
Holiday Pay is paid time off from a company for specified days designated as company holidays. Holiday pay, which covers a specific period of time, must be reported as earnings when you are laid off temporarily and have a definite return to work date.

I

Ineligible
Ineligible means that TWC is unable to pay you benefits for one or more weeks because you did not meet weekly Unemployment Benefits requirements or respond to a request for information from TWC.

J

Job Referral
Job Referral is a notification that you may receive from an employer or state employment service about an employment opportunity. This notification includes the type of work being offered and instructions on contacting the employer.

L

Last Date You Worked
Last Date You Worked is the very last day you performed work or services for a company or person, not necessarily the last date you were on the payroll.
Location Worked
Location Worked is the city or military installation where you worked for a federal employer in a civilian capacity.

M

Mail
If you do not have access to a touch-tone phone or the Internet, you may file your payment request by mail by contacting a TWC Tele-Center. Every two weeks TWC mails you a paper form to fill out that you must mail to TWC during the week you are scheduled to request payment. Payments requested by mail may take at least 4 business days to receive and process due to mail delivery.
Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI)
Maximum Medical Improvement is the point where a Workers' Compensation recipient has stopped improving in physical condition as a result of medical treatment and is released to return to work by the doctor with some or no restrictions.
Maximum Possible Benefits
Maximum Possible Benefits is the total amount you can receive in Unemployment Benefits during your benefit year. Once you receive your maximum possible benefits, you may not receive additional benefits, even if you have not reached the end of your benefit year.
Migrant Seasonal Farmworker
Migrant Seasonal Farmworker (MSFW) is a person who has to travel to perform farm work and is unable to return to his or her permanent residence within the same day. A MSFW must earn at least half of their income from farm work and cannot be employed by the same employer year round.
Military
Military service means having served 180 consecutive days in a branch of the United States armed forces.
Military Service Separation Date
Military Service Separation Date is the date of release from the military, as it appears on your DD-214.
Military Service Start Date
Military Service Start Date is your date of entry into military service.

N

Normal Days and Hours
Normal Days and Hours is the work schedule that employees usually work in a specific occupation. For example, if the sort of work you are seeking usually requires employees to work 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, these would be the normal days and hours for your work.
Normal Wage
Normal Wage is what you usually get paid when you are working. We compare the Normal Wage you indicate to an estimated normal wage TWC calculates using your base period wages. TWC converts your highest quarter's wages to an annual salary and uses this as your estimated normal wage. The Normal Wage you enter on your claim application cannot be greater than 120% of the estimated normal wage.
Notice to Federal Employee About Unemployment Insurance (SF-8)
The Notice to Federal Employee About Unemployment Insurance (SF-8) (PDF) is a form given to you when:
  • You are separated from your federal government job
  • You are placed in a nonpay status, or
  • Your records are transferred to a different payroll office.
When applying for unemployment benefits, having your SF-8 may expedite the application process.
Notification of Personnel Action (SF-50)
The Notification of Personnel Action (SF-50) (PDF) is your copy of an official notice of a personnel action from a federal employer. When applying for unemployment benefits, having your SF-50 may expedite the application process.

O

Obtain a Copy
The employer you list on your unemployment claim application has the legal right to request and obtain a copy of your statement regarding the reason you are no longer working. You also have the right to obtain any statements you or your employer provide.
Other income types
Other income types you may receive could include:
  • retirement from a current or prior employer
  • Social Security Income (SSI)
  • disability income
  • Worker?s Compensation payments received due to an injury
  • Private Income Protection Insurance - payments received from a private insurance provider you subscribe to
  • Supplemental Unemployment Benefits paid due to a collective bargaining agreement
  • Subsidy/Price Support, Crop Insurance, or Farm Disaster Relief (non-DUA)
Overpayment
Overpayment is an amount of benefits paid to which you are not legally entitled, regardless of whether TWC recovers or waives the amount.

P

Payment Request
Payment Request is part of the Internet Unemployment Benefits Services that allows you to request payment nearly 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Pay Rate
Pay Rate is the amount of your earnings and/or commissions for work performed for a specific pay period.
Personal Identification Number (PIN)
Personal Identification Number (PIN) is a four-digit number that you choose. It protects your privacy because no one else can request a payment, change your address on the TWC Unemployment Benefits Services Internet system, or use Tele-Serv to check your claim without that PIN. Do not give your PIN to anyone, not even a family member or a TWC employee.

You enter your Social Security Number and PIN the first time you request a payment on the TWC Unemployment Benefits Services Internet system.

You enter your Social Security Number and PIN on the keypad of a touch-tone phone each time you use Tele-Serv to request payment or check the status of your claim.

If you forgot your PIN, you can call a TWC Tele-Center.
Primary Source of Income
Primary source of income is the revenue that an individual uses to pay for food, clothing, and shelter.
Proof of Income
Proof of Income is documentation that indicates an individual received wages during a specific calendar year.
Proof of Wages and/or Work
Proof of Wages and/or Work are documents that must be provided by you to close a disqualification. You may submit any of the documents listed below only if your name, Social Security Number and the employer's name, address and phone number are on the documents.
  • Check stubs
  • An employer letter with:
    • Name and Social Security Number
    • Beginning date of employment
    • Ending date of employment (if applicable)
    • The employer's name, address and telephone number
    • The total amount of wages earned
  • W-2 Forms (You must be able to identify the specific time frame covered by the W-2)
  • 1099 Forms (You must be able to identify the specific time frame covered by the 1099)

R

Reduced Hours
Reduced hours indicates that you are working less than the customary full-time hours for your normal occupation. For example: If the customary full-time hours for your occupation are 40 hours per week and you are working 23 hours per week then you are working reduced hours.
Regular Benefits
Regular benefits are paid under the State Unemployment Insurance (UI) program based on wages reported to Texas Workforce Commission by employers. This employer-paid program pays benefits to qualified workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own.
Release of Claim
Release of claim gives up the person?s right to pursue a claim against the employer.
Request for Proof of Federal Employment
The Request for Proof of Federal Employment is a form used to establish potential eligibility for unemployment benefits for individuals who worked in a civilian capacity for a federal employer.
Routing Number
A nine digit number assigned by the American Banking Association that uniquely identifies a bank or credit union.

S

Seasonal
Seasonal indicates the work is performed during a set or periodic season. Examples include working at a horse racing facility or summer camp.
Settlement Agreement
Settlement agreement is an agreement between parties resolving an alleged violation associated with the employment relationship, reached either before or after court action begins or a complaint is filed.
Severance Pay
Severance Pay is a sum of money that an employee is eligible to receive upon separation.
SF-8 Federal Agency Code
The SF-8 Federal Agency Code is the parent federal agency 3 digit identification number for your federal employer. It appears on your Notice to Federal Employee About Unemployment Insurance (SF-8).
Shared Work
Shared Work benefits offers an alternative to employers facing a reduction in force. Instead of laying off employees, the employer reduces the hours of work each week among a specific group of employees. Wages lost to the worker as a result of reduced hours are supplemented by a partial unemployment benefit amount.
Suitable Work
Suitable Work is work that TWC determines you should be willing to accept, evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Some factors TWC considers are:
  • Your experience, qualifications, and training
  • The working conditions and pay for similar work in your area
  • Any risks to your health, safety, or morals
  • The distance to work from your home and local commuting patterns
  • The length of your unemployment

T

Tele-Serv
Tele-Serv is an automated telephone system that allows you to request payments using a touch-tone phone by calling a local or toll-free phone number.
Temporary Firm
Temporary firms offer client companies the services of temporary employees who possess specific skills to provide the client company with needed help during peak demand periods, staffing shortages, or the vacations of regular employees, without requiring the time, expense, and long-term commitment of hiring a new employee. The temporary firms typically undertake hiring and firing decisions, issue paychecks, withhold payroll taxes, and make contributions for unemployment insurance, workers' compensation, and Social Security for the employees serving in their client's places of business.
Territories
U.S. territories include American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
Texas Driver License
A Texas Driver License is an official document, usually with a photograph, which states that a person has the necessary qualifications to drive a motorized vehicle in the state of Texas. A license is issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Texas Identification Card
A Texas Identification Card is an official document, usually with a photograph, bearing identifying data, such as name, age, residence, and physical characteristics about a person. The card is issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA)
Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) provides reemployment services to individuals who lose their manufacturing jobs due to foreign imports or shift in production to foreign countries. Included are a variety of benefits and reemployment services to help unemployed workers prepare for and obtain suitable employment. Workers may be eligible for training, job search allowance, weekly benefit payments, relocation allowance, a job search program, and other reemployment services such as employment registration, counseling, testing, job development, and supportive services.
Trade Readjustment Assistance (TRA)
Trade Readjustment Assistance (TRA) provides benefits that may be available to workers who lose their jobs as a result of competition of foreign trade. The Department of Labor must certify the company as being trade affected. These benefits can only be paid after all regular unemployment benefits have been drawn. Talk to a Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) counselor in a local workforce center if you think you may be eligible for these benefits.
True and Complete
The Texas Unemployment Compensation Act and the Texas Penal Code allow Civil and Criminal penalties for fraud. If you receive, or attempt to receive, any unemployment benefits by intentionally not reporting the true facts on any claim for Unemployment Benefits, you may be penalized. Penalties may include fines or jail time, or both.
TWC Processed Date
TWC Processed Date is the date TWC evaluated and processed your request for payment. If you are eligible for benefits, the payment is added to your direct deposit account (bank or credit union) or your TWC UI VisaŽ Debit Card account within two business days of the processed date.
TWC UI VisaŽ Debit Card
The TWC UI VisaŽ Debit Card issued by JPMorgan Chase Bank is an easy, safe, and convenient way to get access to your UI benefit payments.
Type of Business
Types of business asks you to select the type of business you were engaged in at the time of the disaster.
  • Sole Proprietor - An unincorporated business owned by an individual
  • Corporation - A business formed under state law by the filing of articles of incorporation with the state
  • Partnership - A relationship existing between two or more persons who join to carry on a trade or business Each person contributes money, property, labor or skill, and expects to share in the profits and losses of the business
  • S-Corporation - A corporation that elects to pass corporate income, losses, deductions and credit through to their shareholders for federal tax purposes
  • Trust - A relationship formed under state law in which one person holds title to property, subject to an obligation to keep or use the property for the benefit of another
  • Non-Profit Organization - An organization that is recognized as having a tax-exemption status

U

U.S. Citizen
A U.S. Citizen is a person who was born in the United States, has become a naturalized citizen of the United States, or was born in another country to a United States citizen.
Union
Labor Unions function as legally recognized representatives of workers in numerous industries. The most prominent unions are among public sector employees such as teachers and police. Unions typically represent workers who perform a certain type of work on conditions of employment such as grievances, collective bargaining, labor disputes, wages, and hours.
United States Federal Government Employer
A United States Federal Government Employer is a branch or an agency of the United States Federal Government.
  • Examples of federal employers are the U.S. Postal Service, U.S. Census Bureau, Department of Treasury, and Department of Agriculture.
  • Examples of companies that are NOT federal employers:
    • Staffing agencies, such as Staffmark and LINK Staffing
    • Companies with contract or subcontract agreements with the federal government, such as General Dynamics, Fluor, and KBR
    • City, county or state employers and agencies
    • Commercial shipping companies, such as United Parcel Service (UPS) and Federal Express (Fed Ex)

V

Vacation Pay
Vacation Pay is time that you accumulated while working for a company and were able to use as paid time off for a specific time. If you are on a temporary layoff from a company and you choose to use vacation time to cover that period, it is treated as earnings and must be reported when you submit a Payment Request.

W

Wages
Wages are money earned from an employer. Texas employers send TWC quarterly wage reports that list employees' earnings.

When you first apply for benefits, TWC mails you a Statement of Benefits form with information about your claim. If you worked in other states, for the federal government, or for the military, your first Statement of Benefits may not include those wages. TWC will mail you a new Statement of Benefits when we receive updated wage information.
Wages In Lieu of Notice
Wages In Lieu of Notice are payments an employer makes to an employee who is involuntarily separated without receiving prior notice.
Waiting Week
Waiting Week is the first payable week of your claim for Unemployment Benefits. You will receive payment for the waiting week after TWC pays you three times your weekly benefit amount.

For example, if your weekly benefit amount is $100, TWC will pay you for the waiting week after you receive $300 in benefits.
Weekly Benefit Amount (WBA)
Weekly Benefit Amount (WBA) is the maximum amount of benefits you may receive per week if you are eligible to receive Unemployment Benefits. TWC calculates the WBA using your past wages. You may receive less than your WBA if TWC makes authorized deductions.
Workers' Compensation
Workers' Compensation is monetary compensation received as a result of a verifiable on-the-job injury that results in the inability to work. There are four types of compensation:
  • Temporary Income Benefits (TIBs) - Benefits payable during the disability period following the injury and prior to reaching Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI).
  • Impairment Income Benefits (IIBs) - Benefits payable once the individual has reached MMI and has been released by the doctor with some or no restrictions. These benefits are based upon a percentage of impairment rating.
  • Supplemental Income Benefits (SIBs) - Benefits payable after the final impairment pay period ends, provided the individual meets state insurance agency requirements. Must be unable to work to receive these benefits.
  • Lifetime Income Benefits (LIBs) - Benefits payable for severe and permanent injuries.
Workforce Investment Act (WIA)
Workforce Investment Act (WIA) offers a comprehensive mix of workforce development activities benefiting employers, job seekers, laid-off workers, youth, veterans, new workforce entrants, and persons with disabilities. WIA's objective is to promote and improve participants' employment, job retention, earnings, and occupational skills. Please contact your local workforce center for eligibility information.

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