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Preventing & Managing Layoffs

The Shared Work Program

The Shared Work program provides Texas employers with an alternative to layoffs. TWC developed this voluntary program to help Texas employers and employees withstand a slowdown in business.

Shared Work allows employers to:

  • Supplement their employees’ wages lost because of reduced work hours with partial unemployment benefits.
  • Reduce normal weekly work hours for employees in an affected unit by at least 10 percent but not more than 40 percent; the reduction must affect at least 10 percent of the employees in that unit.

Eligibility Requirements for a Shared Work Plan

  • The percentage of reduced hours can be different for different individuals, as long as the reduction in normal weekly hours ranges from 10 percent to 40 percent each week, depending on plan specifications. The range of hours worked may vary under Shared Work rules. TWC calculates the number from the number of hours you specify as normal full-time employment. The figure may differ for various plan participants.
  • The reduction in hours must apply to at least 10 percent of the employees in an affected unit.
  • A shared work plan must describe how the employees will be notified in advance of the plan, if possible.
  • A shared work plan must be an alternative to layoffs and you must provide an estimate of the number of employees who would be laid off if you do not participate in a shared work plan.
  • If you currently provide fringe benefits, you must continue to provide these benefits for the employees in the shared work plan. Fringe benefits include health insurance, retirement benefits, paid vacation, holiday or sick leave, or other employee benefit.
  • Employees participating in a shared work plan may participate in training, such as employer-sponsored training or Commission-approved training, to enhance their job skills.

Application Process

How to Apply for a Shared Work Plan

Complete and submit TWC’s Shared Work Plan Application and Employee Participant List by mail or fax. Your plan must include the names and Social Security numbers of all participating employees.

Mail:
Texas Workforce Commission
UI Support Services
101 E 15th St, Rm 354
Austin, TX 78778

Fax: 512-936-3250

TWC approves or denies a plan within 30 days of receipt. The effective date of the plan is the date TWC approves it. To simplify time-keeping procedures, request an effective date for your plan that coincides with your payroll date. After TWC approval, the shared work plan is effective for one year (12 full calendar months).

After Submitting a Shared Work Plan

When TWC approves a Shared Work Plan, we mail you a Notice of Shared Work Plan Status, for verification, and forms and instructions on how to file claims for your employees.

If TWC denies a Shared Work Plan, we notify you in writing.

After you submit the first week of reduced hours for an employee, TWC mails the employee a Federal Income Tax Voluntary Withholding Request form.

For more detailed information visit the Texas Workforce Commission website.