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UI Contributions Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Annual Rating and Benefit Charge Statements - Unemployment Insurance

Annual Rate Notice FAQs

1. What tax table is in use for 2021?
Employers will be taxed under the Table F tax rate schedule. Table F ranges from 2.2 percent to 13.5 percent. View Table F tax rate schedule.

The rate for new employers in 2021 is 2.3 percent. However, the rate for new construction employers headquartered in another state is 7.0 percent.

2. Will employers be charged for benefits awarded during the State of Emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic?
Contributory employers will not be charged for benefits awarded during the State of Emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On December 10, 2020, Governor Hogan issued Executive Order 20-12-10-01 so that Maryland's contributory employers are not held financially responsible for their employees that were laid off or furloughed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This means that all chargeable benefits paid to former employees from July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, will not impact employer tax rates for 2021.

There are some employers who will be negatively impacted by the Executive Order and receive a higher tax rate. For these employers, the Executive Order offers flexibility and their tax rate will be calculated as it normally would be and will be based on their experience during fiscal years 2018, 2019, and 2020.

3. How are employer tax rates calculated for calendar year 2021?
This year, employers’ tax rate notice contains two calculations: One with the Executive Order; the other without the Executive Order. The comparison of both rates is displayed on the rate notice. Employers will receive the lower of the two rates.

Calculation with the Executive Order

An employer’s 2021 tax rate will be calculated based on their pre-pandemic experience by excluding fiscal year 2020 and instead use the experience from the three (3) fiscal years of 2017, 2018, and 2019:

Fiscal Year Fiscal Year Period in Fiscal Year
2017 July 1, 2016 - June 30, 2017
2018 July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018
2019 July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019

Calculation without the Executive Order

An employer’s tax rate will also be calculated without the Executive Order to ensure employers receive the lowest tax rate they are entitled to. This rate will use the experience from the three (3) fiscal years of 2018, 2019, and 2020:

Fiscal Year Fiscal Year Period in Fiscal Year
2018 July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018
2019 July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019
2020 July 1, 2019 - June 30, 2020

Each employer will receive the lower of the two rates identified on the rate notice. Please note that if an employer’s contribution rate is the same with the Executive Order and without the Executive Order, the employer’s rate will be determined with the Executive Order. This means that the employer’s contribution rate will be calculated based on fiscal years 2017, 2018, and 2019.

4. With the Executive Order in place, will employers still see an increase in their 2021 tax rates?
Due to the change in the applicable tax table, all employers will see an increase in their tax rate for the calendar year 2021. Since the beginning of the pandemic, over $1.5 billion in benefits have been awarded from the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund. Based on the balance of the Trust Fund, Maryland employers will be taxed under Table F in 2021.

Even so, the Executive Order maintains the 2020 benefit ratio for employers in 2021, which will ultimately reduce many employers’ tax rates from what they would have been without the Executive Order.

For example: An employer with a benefit ratio between .0163 and .0189 in Table A had a rate of 2.10%. But, in Table F, the rate for that same benefit ratio will be 4.90%. Without the Executive Order, an employer’s benefit ratio might have increased based on their pandemic experience, so their tax rate would be even higher than 4.90%.

5. If an employer was assigned the new employer rate last year, what rate will an employer receive for 2021?
If an employer received the New Employer rate for calendar year 2020, the employer will receive the New Employer rate (2.3%) again for calendar year 2021.

6. If an employer won an appeal for their 2020 experience rate and was assigned a new benefit ratio, will the new ratio be used for 2021?
Yes, the 2021 benefit ratio will represent the final ratio provided for the calendar year 2020.

7. When will employers receive their tax rates for calendar year 2021?
Employers may access their annual rate notice for 2021 in their BEACON portal.

Depending on employers’ communication preference, employers may also receive their annual rate notice for 2021 via USPS.

8. Can an employer protest the assigned rate for calendar year 2021?
Yes, an employer will be able to protest the Experience Rate Notice and request a review determination within 30 days after the Experience Rate Notice is sent by the Maryland Department of Labor.

9. Will employers be able to pay their taxes via a payment plan?
Yes, payment plans will be available for 2021. Employers may request a payment plan via their BEACON portal.

For additional information, please submit any questions you may have by completing the Inquiry Form.

Benefit Charge Statement FAQs:

10. Will an employer be charged for fraudulent benefits?
No, neither contributory nor reimbursable employers will be charged for fraudulent benefits.

11. What should employers do if they believe a fraudulent charge is included on their benefit charge statement?
Employers should protest the benefit charge statement either via their BEACON portal or via mail:

Division of Unemployment Insurance
Review Determination Unit
1100 N. Eutaw Street, Room 401
Baltimore, MD 21201

If fraudulent claims continue to be charged to your account, please contact the fraud unit via e-mail at ui.fraud@maryland.gov to report the fraudulent activity. The fraud unit will investigate and cancel the claim if it is determined to be fraudulent.

12. Can employers still protest a fraudulent claim on their benefit charge statement after the 30-day protest period has lapsed?
Yes, employers may protest a fraudulent claim even after the 30-day protest period has lapsed. Employers may file a protest after the 30-day protest period via their BEACON portal or via mail:

Division of Unemployment Insurance
Review Determination Unit
1100 N. Eutaw Street, Room 401
Baltimore, MD 21201