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ETA Seeks Comments by September 20 on New Data Collection in Support of a National Longitudinal Study of Unemployment Insurance Recipients
Jul 22, 2013

The Employment and Training Administration has proposed a new data collection in support of a National Longitudinal Study of Unemployment Insurance Recipients.

Click here for full background, survey methodology, burden hour estimates, desired focus for comments, and instructions for submission of comments.  Comments are due by September 20. 

Excerpts:

The unemployment insurance (UI) program was designed to reduce financial hardships for unemployed workers, assist with reemployment, and ameliorate the negative effects of unemployment on the economy as a whole. By providing temporary income support, UI benefits can smooth the transition to new circumstances, reduce financial distress, and provide workers with a buffer while they search for jobs. Furthermore, to reduce the potential incentive for UI recipients to prolong their unemployment, UI benefits are time-limited and provide only a partial replacement of lost earnings.

Understanding how workers adjust to the changes in income during and after UI claim spells would enable policymakers to assess how well the program is serving the nation's workers and refine it to meet the needs of unemployed workers while encouraging them to return to work. However, information about UI recipients is generally obtained from retrospective surveys, which might not provide sufficient insight into the dynamic adjustments after job loss or the recipients' satisfaction with the program structure.

The National Longitudinal Study of Unemployment Insurance Recipients (NLS-UI), funded by the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy, Chief Evaluation Office, will help policymakers and program administrators gain information about the experiences of UI recipients. The study will examine the extent to which the UI program reduces recipients' financial hardships, the ways in which job search and reemployment expectations change during and after benefit collection, and customers' satisfaction levels with the UI program.

The study will address research questions in six broad topic areas:

  • Adequacy of UI Benefits
  • Total UI Benefit Usage          
  • Reemployment Expectations                                                           
  • Job Search
  • Employment Outcomes
  • UI Recipients’ Satisfaction with the UI Program

This package requests clearance for three surveys of UI recipients that will take place over approximately nine months. The surveys will be timed to coincide with the early, middle, and post-UI collection receive a first payment during 2013. Each survey will take about 25 minutes, on average, and they will be administered by web and computer-assisted telephone interviewing. Administrative UI claims data will also be collected from both states to obtain identifying and contact information about UI recipients who will be surveyed and to learn about their UI benefit collection experiences.