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Employers

If your business has been impacted by COVID-19, you and your employees may be eligible for unemployment benefits. Here are some key things to know:

If your business is reopening, check out this list of frequently asked questions. Below is information to help you navigate this uncertain time for you and your employees.

  • Your business may qualify for Work Share. This program is an alternative to laying off your employees. It lets you keep skilled employees during slow times by reducing work hours. Find out if your business qualifies for the Work Share program and read a list of frequently asked questions.
  • If an employer is unable to pay their unemployment insurance taxes fully for the first quarter of 2020 (for which the statutory deadline for payments was April 30, 2020) because of COVID-19 related factors, the Oregon Employment Department is offering relief to any business affected by the pandemic and the measures taken to slow its spread.
  • If you are self-employed, you may qualify for benefits through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program.
  • To ensure that your employees quickly start receiving unemployment benefits, verify your employees' employment and reason(s) for termination or reduced hours. If someone from the Oregon Employment Department reaches out to you, please respond quickly. Otherwise this may hold up benefits.
  • It is critical that you promptly file your quarterly payroll tax reports. By doing so, we can verify your employees’ income and quickly pay benefits if they are eligible.
  • It is essential that you provide accurate employee information when filing your quarterly payroll tax reports. Transposing a social security number, misspelling a first or last name, or using a nickname instead of the employee’s legal name will cause delays in getting benefits to your employees who need them.
  • For more information on how COVID-19 may impact the reopening of your business, see the guidelines established by the Governor’s office.
  • Visit the “Businesses” section of the Oregon Employment Department’s website for more information.

The Oregon Employment Department has new guidance for employers who have or will be laying off some or all of their employees due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Employers must provide information about Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits at the time of the layoff or separation of employment, even if the layoff is not permanent. This requirement is in ORS 657.260. The following notice should be posted and provided in either an electronic or printed format to separating employees.

As some employers already have laid off employees, we encourage those employers to reach out to their separated employees to provide this information.


Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits are available to workers who are unemployed or have reduced hours, and meet eligibility requirements. You may file a UI claim the first week your employment stops or your work hours are reduced. Use our Online Claims System to apply for benefits. If you cannot file online, call 1-877-FILE-4-UI (1-877-345-3484). Free interpretation is provided.

This is not a type of public assistance or public charge. Anyone authorized to work in the U.S. may be eligible.

For information about filing a UI claim, visit unemployment.oregon.gov. You will need to provide the Oregon Employment Department with the following information to have your claim processed:

  • Your full legal name
  • Your employment history for the last 18 months
  • Your Social Security Number
    • If you are a citizen of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia, or the Republic of the Marshall Islands, you must also provide your I-94 number.
    • All other workers who are not US citizens must also provide a worker authorization number/AR number.