DWD logo

Scott Walker, Governor
Raymond Allen, Secretary

Department of Workforce Development
Secretary's Office

201 E. Washington Avenue
P.O. Box 7946
Madison, WI 53707-7946
Telephone: (608) 266-3131
Fax: (608) 266-1784
Email: sec@dwd.wisconsin.gov

Monday, November 21, 2016
CONTACT: DWD Communications, 608-266-2722
On the Web: http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/news/
On Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/WIWorkforce
On Twitter: @WIWorkforce

#AccountableGov Update: DWD Releases New Worker Classification Educational Videos to Support UI Program Integrity

Digital videos guide employers through properly classifying workers and preparing for hearings, part of ongoing initiative to boost compliance with UI program

MADISON – Today, Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Ray Allen announced the release of two videos aimed at educating employers on how to properly classify workers in Wisconsin for Unemployment Insurance (UI) tax purposes. The videos highlight DWD's Worker Classification website and represent the state's latest strategies under Governor Scott Walker's leadership to administer an effective and accountable UI program, to fight fraud and abuse and to support a stable UI Trust Fund.

"Proper worker classification helps to ensure a level playing field for all employers who are responsible for supporting the UI Trust Fund, and I am pleased to present these videos to help prevent misclassification and build awareness of what's required of employers when possible misclassification is detected," Secretary Allen said. "Even as most Wisconsin employers classify workers accurately and pay the required contributions into the UI Trust Fund, we will continue to take aggressive steps with an ultimate goal of 100 percent compliance with the law."

The videos, available on DWD's website and YouTube channel, reference the worker classification website that DWD launched in 2013. The site walks employers through each step of a self-administered test to determine if a worker is an independent contractor or employee. In addition to the website, DWD speaks with professional organizations and routinely sponsors forums such as labor law clinics and webinars to help educate employers on the importance of proper worker classification.

When employers improperly classify workers and avoid paying legally required UI taxes, the balance of Wisconsin's UI Trust Fund is adversely impacted and benefits are improperly denied to workers who are out of work through no fault of their own. DWD's seasoned investigators, including former Wisconsin Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation agents, work collaboratively across the state's UI operation to conduct worksite investigations, follow-up on tips and determine employer tax liability and associated penalties related to non-compliance.

DWD's ongoing commitment to prevent, detect and take action against attempts to defraud or abuse the UI system has helped the UI Trust Fund move from a $1.3 billion deficit in 2010 to its healthiest condition since 2003.

The new worker classification videos are available on DWD's YouTube channel.

For information on how to properly classify workers in Wisconsin, please visit DWD's UI Worker Classification website