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Unemployment Benefits Appeals in Texas

Unemployment

This article explains how to file an appeal if your application for unemployment benefits is denied.

Learn the basics of appealing a denial of unemployment benefits. This article includes links to forms and tutorials. 

This article was originally adapted from content found on the website of the Texas Workforce Commission and was last reviewed and revised by TexasLawHelp.org on September 10, 2022.

What can I do if my application for unemployment benefits is denied?

You may appeal the decision.

What is an appeal?

An appeal is your written notice that you disagree with the decision to deny benefits. An appeal asks the Texas Workforce Commission to reconsider its decision.

Do I need a lawyer to file an appeal?

No, you do not need a lawyer to file an appeal.

What is the first step in the appeals process?

The first step is to submit a written appeal to TWC.

Where do I file my written appeal?

You may file your appeal online, in person at the nearest Workforce Solutions office, or by mailing or faxing your appeal to the Appeals Department.

Mail:

Appeal Tribunal
Texas Workforce Commission
101 E 15th Street, Room 410
Austin, TX 78778-0001

Fax: 512-475-1135. (For faxes, use this appeal form.)

If you mail your letter, use certified mail, and keep your receipt. If you fax the letter, keep the paperwork that shows the fax was successfully transmitted.

Keep a copy of your appeal for your records.

For more information on filing your appeal online, see how to File an Unemployment Appeal.

How much time do I have to file an appeal?

You must submit your appeal within 14 calendar days from the date TWC mailed you the Determination Notice (decision letter).

If the 14th day falls on a federal or state holiday, you have until the next business day to file your appeal.

What do I need to write in the appeal?

Your appeal can be a simple written statement that says you disagree with the decision and want to appeal it.

Your letter or appeal form should include:

  • Your name
  • Your Social Security Number
  • Your current address
  • The date TWC mailed you the Determination Notice
  • A copy of the Determination Notice, if possible
  • Any dates on which you will not be able to participate in a hearing

Read how to File an Unemployment Appeal.

What happens after I file the written appeal?

If you appeal on time, TWC will schedule a telephone hearing with a Hearing Officer. The Hearing Officer is also called the Appeal Tribunal.

What if I need accommodations for the telephone hearing?

Tell TWC as soon as possible if you need access to a telephone or fax machine, or if you or your witnesses need an interpreter or have a hearing impairment.

When will my telephone hearing be scheduled?

It may take six to eight weeks to receive a hearing information packet with information about your appeal. TWC will mail you the packet five to ten days before your hearing.

The hearing information packet includes:

  • The Notice of Telephone Hearing, which includes the date and time of hearing, the telephone number to call for the hearing, and the name and contact information of the Hearing Officer assigned to the hearing
  • Instructions on how to participate in the hearing
  • Instructions on how to submit any additional documents
  • The information TWC received in response to your claim
  • All fact-finding statements TWC gathered while investigating the issue(s) on appeal
  • Any protests to your claim
  • The claim issues up for discussion

It is important that you keep your mailing address up to date to receive the hearing information packet and appeal decision. You can change your address on TWC’s website.

How do I prepare for my telephone hearing?

What happens after the telephone hearing?

The Hearing Officer will mail you a written decision, usually within five to ten working days. Read After the Appeal Hearing.

How do I check the status of my appeal?

Within two to three weeks after submitting an appeal, you can check the status of your appeal online.

Once logged in, under “Quick Links” on the left of every page, you will see a link for “Appeal List.” Here you can find information such as the appeal file date, the level of your appeal, and its status.

Should I continue to request payments while waiting for the appeal decision?

Yes. While waiting on your appeal, continue to request payment every two weeks for every week you are not employed full-time.

What if I disagree with the results of the telephone appeal hearing?

If you disagree with the telephone hearing decision, you may further appeal to the Commission.

How long do I have to appeal to the Commission?

You must appeal in writing within 14 calendar days from the date TWC mailed you the telephone hearing decision. The Commission appeal deadline is printed on the coversheet of your appeal decision.

Where do I file my appeal to the Commission?

You can file your appeal online, in person at your nearest Workforce Solutions office, or by mailing or faxing your appeal letter to Commission Appeals.

Mail:

Commission Appeals
Texas Workforce Commission
101 E 15th Street, Room 678
Austin, TX 78778-0001

Fax: 512-475-2044

For faxes, use this appeal form.

If you mail your letter, use certified mail, and keep your receipt. If you fax the letter, keep the paperwork that shows the fax was successfully transmitted.

Keep a copy of your appeal for your records. You may e-mail questions to commission.appeals@twc.texas.gov. Do not email your appeal documents.

What happens if I win my appeal?

If you win at either stage, TWC will pay back the benefits denied.

What happens if I lose my appeal?

If you lose, you must repay the unemployment benefits you have already received.

What if I disagree with the Commission's decision?

If you disagree with the Commission's decision, you have two options: a Motion for Rehearing, or an appeal to a civil court.

How do I request a Motion for Rehearing?

You must make this request within 14 calendar days of the date TWC mailed you the Commission decision. TWC will grant the Motion for Rehearing only if you can present all of the following:

  • Important new information about your case
  • The reason(s) why you did not present this information earlier
  • The reason(s) why you think this information could change the decision.

Where do I submit my Motion for Rehearing?

You can submit your written Motion for Rehearing online, in person at your nearest Workforce Solutions office, or by mailing or faxing your letter to Commission Appeals.

Mail:

Commission Appeals
Texas Workforce Commission
101 E 15th Street, Room 678
Austin, TX 78778-0001

Fax: 512-475-2044 (For faxes, use this appeal form.)

If you mail your letter, use certified mail, and keep your receipt. If you fax the letter, keep the paperwork that shows the fax was successfully transmitted.

Keep a copy of your appeal for your records.

When can I appeal to a civil court?

You may appeal to a civil court between 15 and 28 days after the date TWC mailed you the Commission Appeal decision. You must complete all of the appeal steps available through TWC (except the optional Motion for Rehearing) before appealing to a civil court.

More Information

More information about the unemployment benefits appeal process can be found in TWC’s Introduction to the Unemployment Benefits Appeal Process.

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