File an Appeal

Determinations are made in different sections of the Division of Employment Security. Each determination has an address and instructions for filing an appeal. You must file your appeal at the address and according to the instructions included in the determination (04 N.C. Admin. Code 24C .0202). You can find a listing of addresses and contact information for the various DES work units in 04 N.C. Admin. Code 24A .0104.  

The best and fastest way to appeal is by using the DES online benefits system, available by logging in to your account on our website, des.nc.gov. Once an appeal is filed, DES will schedule a hearing on your appeal. A notice of hearing containing the date, time and contact information for the designated appeals referee will be sent to you. (04 N.C. Admin. Code 24C .0204).

Not every action by the Division of Employment Security that you disagree with can be appealed. Only determinations with appeal rights attached can be appealed. You cannot appeal “pending” issues or claims that have been declared monetarily ineligible. Sending an appeal on an issue that cannot be appealed can delay resolution of your issue or claim.

Things that cannot be appealed include:

  • Pending issues
  • Incomplete or pending claims
  • Monetary determinations, including “monetarily ineligible” claim status
  • Weekly benefit amounts
  • Excessive earnings/wages preventing benefit payment 
  • Weekly certifications
  • Claim effective dates, backdating requests
  • Waiting week waivers

These issues can be addressed by contacting the Customer Call Center or the Employer Call Center.

Levels of Appeal

Appeals Section / Appeals Referee Hearings

The Appeals Section of DES, or the Appellate Section, conducts quasi-judicial evidentiary hearings on contested claims for unemployment insurance benefits. Appeals hearings before the Appeals Section are conducted by appeals referees who preside over hearings and issue decisions that contain findings of fact and conclusions of law. Most appeals to initial agency determinations are heard by the Appeals Section, and most of those are determinations by Adjudication regarding unemployment insurance claims. Appeals referees also conduct hearings on appeals to overpayments, denials of employer requests for noncharging, claim withdrawals and other special programs.

Not every action by the division that you disagree with can be appealed. Only determinations with appeal rights attached can be appealed. You cannot appeal “pending” issues or claims that have been declared monetarily ineligible. Sending an appeal on an issue that cannot be appealed can delay resolution of your issue or claim.

FILING AN APPEAL TO THE APPEALS SECTION (Appealing an initial Adjudicator’s Determination):

The best and fastest way to file an initial appeal is by using the DES online benefits system, available by logging in to your account on our website, des.nc.gov. You can also fax appeals to 919-857-1296 or email them to des.public.appeals@nccommerce.com. Note that due to the volume of emails being received, it will take several weeks for your email to be reviewed. You should not submit claims or general questions to the Appeals email box, as those messages are only reviewed to determine if they are valid appeals.

The final option for filing appeals is by postal mail, to DES Appeals, P.O. Box 27967, Raleigh, NC 27611-7967. Note that appeals sent by email, fax or postal mail will take longer to process, so please allow several weeks for your appeal to be reviewed and scheduled.  

If you have questions regarding the appeals process for initial appeals to Adjudicator’s Determination and other first level appeals, you can contact the Appeals Section by phone at 919-707-1060.

General questions about unemployment insurance and claims, including federal programs and extension under the CARES Act such as PUA, PEUC, and FPUC, should be addressed to the Customer Call Center or Employer Call Center.

WHAT MUST MY APPEAL CONTAIN?

An initial, first level appeal must:

  1. Be in writing. An electronic or online written statement is sufficient.
  2. State that you appeal or disagree with the determination or ruling.
  3. State the Issue ID number or Docket number that you are appealing.
  4. State your full name, and, if you are with an employer, your title.
  5. State your contact information, including your phone number(s) and email addresses.

You may also include a detailed statement of why you are appealing for the appeals referee to review, along with any evidence you would like considered as part of your appeals hearing. No particular form is required is required for initial appeals.

WHAT IF I HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT AN APPEAL I FILED?

If your appeal has been scheduled, please contact the appeals referee assigned to your case, as indicated on the Notice of Hearing or Order for Continuance. Note you should also be able to see your appeals notices in the ‘My Documents’ section of the DES website, des.nc.gov.  

If you want the status of an appeal that you have filed but that has not yet been scheduled, please call the Appeals Section at 919-707-1060.

WHEN WILL MY APPEAL BE SCHEDULED?

Appeals are scheduled for hearing in the order they are received. Due to the surge in claims and appeals related to the COVID-19, it is taking longer than usual to schedule appeals hearings. Currently appeals hearings are being scheduled eight or more weeks out from the date we receive your appeal.

Board of Review / Higher Authority Appeals / Second Level Appeals

See Board of Review