Kansas Appeals Process – What Happens When you’re Denied Benefits?
If your claim is denied for any reason, you have the right to appeal the determination. You may also appeal a monetary determination.
In Kansas, you have 16 days from the date on your Notice of Determination to file an appeal. You must file in writing. You may mail or fax your appeal to:
Office of Appeals
401 SW Topeka Blvd.
Topeka KS 66603-3182
Fax: (785) 296-4065
Your appeal should include the reason for the appeal and your current contact information. If you file a late appeal – after the 16-day period has elapsed – you should include a statement telling the Office of Appeals why you filed late. The reason you provide should indicate you were late because of circumstances beyond your control.
You will receive a notice from the Office setting the date and time for your hearing. In Kansas, appeals are via telephone by default.
Preparing for the Appeals Hearing
Your appeal will be before an Appeals Referee. Your employer will have the right to appear at the hearing. If you filed an appeal of a monetary determination or other administrative matter, a representative of the Department may participate in the hearing.
The Referee, a trained attorney, will act as fact-finder, like a jury, and will apply the law, like a judge. While this process is not a trial, there are rules to follow, and the Referee will expect both parties to behave respectfully.
You have the right to have someone represent you at the hearing. You may hire an attorney or have a friend represent you.
You have the right to present evidence and witnesses to support your argument. If you have a friend representing you at the hearing, that friend may not testify.
If you feel a witness may be reluctant to testify, you may request that the Referee issue a subpoena to mandate their appearance at the hearing. You must make the request no more than seven days from the date of the hearing. The Referee may grant or deny the request.
If you need to submit evidence, you must do so at least 24-hours prior to the hearing. Your employer has a right to view the evidence you present, and the advance time will give the Office time to provide copies.
You must also notify the Office in advance if you will need translation or other assistance.
If you have a scheduling conflict, you should contact the Office as soon as you discover it and attempt to reschedule the hearing. You must have a good cause to reschedule, like a job conflict or unforeseen emergency.
Consider your position carefully and form a fact-based argument to show why you should receive benefits. Your evidence and witnesses should support your position. The evidence must be relevant to the cause of your separation from work. Your witness should have first-hand knowledge of the situation. The hearing is not the time to address other issues besides your dismissal or quit.
What Happens During the Hearing
The Referee will swear in both parties to the hearing, then provide instructions on procedure. The Referee will determine the order of testimony. The employer may go first if the issue is whether you quit or were discharged for misconduct. The appealing party may also go first.
The Referee will allow each party to present their case, then allow the opposing party the opportunity to ask questions. The Referee may ask questions of both parties to help uncover the facts.
Both parties may make a closing statement. It is your opportunity to make a logical argument based on the facts.
The Referee will notify both parties of the decision via mail. If you disagree with the Referee’s decision, you may appeal the decision to the Employment Security Board of Review. The notice of the decision by the Referee will contain information on how to appeal to that entity.