Paper titled Unemployment Insurance

Request a Hearing

Request a Hearing

Why Would I Want a Hearing?

What if I disagree with the Department of Labor’s Notice of Determination?

If you disagree with the Notice of Determination you may request a hearing.

What is a Hearing?

What is a hearing?

The hearing is conducted by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) who is neutral. At the hearing the claimant and the employer may give testimony and present documents in support of their positions. Sometimes, a representative from the Department of Labor will be at the hearing.

How do I ask for a Hearing?

How do I ask for a hearing if I am a Claimant?

  1. To request a hearing online, go to and sign in to your NY.Gov account. Choose “Go to My Online Forms.”  Under the “Forms Available for Filing” menu on the left, choose the “Claimant Request for Hearing” form. Please fill out the form completely and submit it.


  1. You may also request a hearing by mail or fax. Submit a Claimant Request for a Hearing form which can be found in the back of the claimant handbook. You may also write a letter including your first and last name and the last four digits of your Social Security Number to the address below:

            NYS Department of Labor

            P.O. Box 15131

            Albany, NY 12212-5131 or

Or fax to:  518-457-9378

How do I ask for a hearing if I am an Employer?

Submit your request for a hearing to Unemployment Insurance Division, PO Box 15131, Albany, NY 12212-5131. “Employer Request for Hearing” forms are available online at

You are required to provide a detailed explanation of the events which you believe are the grounds for denying benefits to the claimant.


Is there a deadline for requesting a hearing?

A request for a hearing must be postmarked, faxed, or sent electronically within 30 days of the date printed on the initial determination.  It is important to make a timely hearing request, or you may lose the opportunity to have a hearing about the facts of your case.

Help for Claimants

How can I speak with someone to ask questions about the hearing process or a document I received?

If you are a claimant, contact the Unemployment Insurance Claimant Advocate Office Monday through Friday 9 am to 4PM:

Call toll free: 855-528-5618

Secure Message: Log in at . Select the envelope icon. On the next page, select the menu button beside “Message Inbox” and choose “Compose New.” Select “Claimant Advocate Office” for the subject line.

*Staff at the Claimant Advocate’s Office are not lawyers and cannot represent you at a hearing. If you cannot afford to pay an attorney or a registered representative, you may be able to get free representation from a pro bono attorney or your local Legal Aid Society or legal services program. For a list of legal resources, including attorneys, registered representatives, legal services programs and pro bono attorneys’ organizations, go to the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board website at Click on the “Resources” tab and then click on “List of Attorneys & Authorized Agents.” You may also request this list by calling (518) 402-0205.

If I Get Another Determination

What if I get another Notice of Determination after I have asked for a hearing?

If you receive a new Notice of Determination after you asked for a hearing, read the instructions provided on the notice carefully.  You may be required to make a new hearing request on any additional determinations you disagree with. Follow the instructions on the Notice of Determination about when and how to ask for a hearing.

Can an Employer Stop My Request?

What if any former employer tries to prevent me from asking for a hearing or an appeal?

According to the Labor Law, no one has the right to interfere with your claim for benefits.  To file a complaint, call 888-4-NYSDOL and choose the option for Labor Standards or ask to be connected to the Labor Standards Division.

Can I Request a Hearing Date?

Can I request my hearing for a certain day or time?

Hearings are scheduled Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. (EST). You cannot request a specific day or time. If there is a specific date or time that you are unavailable for a hearing, you should include this information in your request for a hearing with an explanation of why you are unavailable. 

When Will the Hearing Happen?

How soon after I make my request will the hearing take place?

Hearings are generally scheduled two weeks after the Appeal Board receives the hearing file from the Department of Labor.  Hearings are generally held within 30 days after you make the request.

Continue to Certify for Benefits

Should I continue to certify for benefits while waiting for the hearing?

Yes. You should continue to certify weekly as long as you are unemployed and seeking benefits, both before and after the hearing, or if you appeal to the Appeal Board or to the Court. If you fail to certify you could lose your benefits. You should follow all instructions you receive from the Unemployment Insurance Office.

Administrative Law Judge

Who is the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ)?

The ALJ is a neutral decision-maker on the staff of the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board and is independent of the Telephone Claims Center (TCC) and the Department of Labor.

What role does the ALJ play at the hearing?

The ALJ can sustain (agree), overrule (disagree) or modify (change) the Notice of Determination.  The ALJ will conduct the hearing by asking questions of the parties and their witnesses (who must swear or affirm to tell the truth) and by accepting documents into evidence.  The ALJ will review the testimony and evidence presented at the hearing and make a decision, in writing, about whether the claimant is entitled to benefits. In some cases, the ALJ decides whether a claimant worked as an employee or independent contractor and whether a business is liable as an employer for contributions to the unemployment insurance fund. For more information see below under ‘AT THE HEARING, what happens at the hearing?’

May I contact the ALJ before or after the hearing?

The ALJ is not permitted to speak to a party before or after the hearing. You may speak to staff in the hearing office if you have questions about the hearing date, the hearing procedure, or want to request a postponement. The staff at the hearing office may not provide you with advice about your case or tell you whether you should or should not be represented at the hearing. You may contact the Claimant Advocate Office for any other questions you have about your case prior to the hearing.

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