Gov. Gianforte Announces Process to Reduce Unemployment Fraud

Employers to Notify DLI When Claimants Skip Interviews

Governor's Office
  • July 20 2021

HELENA, Mont. – Governor Greg Gianforte today announced a new process for Montana employers to notify the Montana Department of Labor & Industry (DLI) if an unemployment insurance (UI) claimant fails to appear for a scheduled interview.

“We’ve recently heard from employers across the state with a common complaint: candidates for open positions submit applications and schedule interviews, only to skip out on it,” Governor Gianforte said. “This new process established by Commissioner Esau will cut down on wasted time for Montana small businesses and ensure UI claimants are adhering to program rules.”

Montana law requires UI claimants to make an active, good-faith effort to secure employment every week benefits are claimed. Scheduling an interview to complete a weekly work search requirement, but then failing to appear for that interview, may violate UI program rules.

DLI Commissioner Laurie Esau added, “Some restaurants have said they scheduled half a dozen interviews or more on a given day, and had only a single applicant actually show up – if any at all. To be sure, there are plenty of legitimate reasons why an applicant misses an interview. Many of the individuals who skip out on an interview may not even be UI claimants at all. But if a UI claimant is scheduling an interview to complete his or her work search requirements, and then fails to make a good-faith effort to appear and obtain a job offer, that may impact his or her eligibility for UI benefits going forward.”

Employers who submit information about declined or missed interviews may be contacted by fraud investigators for more information. However, the outcome of the audit will remain between the claimant and the department.

UI claimants are encouraged to consult the Claimant Handbook to ensure they remain in compliance with work search requirements.

If an individual is receiving UI benefits and then refuses an official offer of work, it may impact their ability to continue receiving benefits. In these cases, employers are encouraged to notify UI and complete the Refusal of Work Report form and return it to uieservices@mt.gov or log on to UI eServices for Employers and attach it to a secure web message. 

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