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Appeals Guide - Preparing For The Hearing

Gathering the evidence. You should begin to gather the evidence necessary to present your case as soon as you file your appeal, or as soon as you learn that another party has filed one. You probably will not get another chance to present evidence after the hearing. You may want to make notes to help you remember important facts, although you cannot read your testimony at the hearing.

The first place to start is with the appeal file. This contains the documents in the case, including the written evidence used by the DETS in making its determination. A copy of that file will be mailed to you with the hearing notice. After reading this material, you should have an idea of what facts you need to challenge or support the determination. If you do not understand the DETS determination, discuss the case with a DETS representative. The appeals officer cannot discuss the issues of the case with you before the hearing.

Interpreters. If you need an interpreter, please call our office and one will be provided.

Witnesses. You have the right to present testimony of witnesses. The appeals officer, however, will not allow repetitive evidence or evidence that is not relevant to the case. There is no need to bring several witnesses to testify to the same occurrence or facts. One credible witness is enough. You may need more than one witness, however, to cover different occurrences or facts.

You must notify your witnesses of the hearing (and provide their telephone numbers if the hearing is by telephone). If your witness will not agree to testify, contact the appeals officer immediately. If the witness is necessary to your case, the appeals officer will, at your request, issue a subpoena which will compel the witness to testify. You must provide the name and current address of the witness.  You must also include a short statement explaining why the witness is necessary.

Written evidence. You may submit records, letters, and other documents for the hearing. The appeals officer will, however, take only evidence that is relevant and necessary to decide the case. Some examples of written material introduced into evidence in unemployment insurance hearings are: time cards, payroll records, warning notices, company rules, union hiring and membership records, and medical reports.

You can request the appeals officer to issue a subpoena if you do not have the original or a readable photocopy of a necessary document and cannot obtain one voluntarily. You must identify the document and the person or office that has the document. You must also state why you believe the document is necessary evidence in your case.

Before the hearing you should send the Appeal Tribunal copies of any documents you intend to submit. You may mail, email or fax them to the Appeal Tribunal address or fax number.  Bring your copies to the hearing or have them with you if the hearing is by telephone. Tax hearing exhibits should be received by the Tribunal 10 days prior to the prehearing date.

Researching the law. The Hearing Officer is familiar with unemployment insurance law and will summarize the law at the hearing. If you wish to familiarize yourself with the law before the hearing, you can review the Alaska Employment Security Act (AS 23.20) and the regulations governing the unemployment insurance program under the Alaska Administrative Code (8 AAC 85). The UI appeal process is administered under AS 23.20.410-470 and 8 AAC 85.150-157. The exact provisions of law which govern your case will be shown on the hearing notice.