Employer's Report of Separation & Wage Information


What is an Employer Separation Report?

A separation report is electronically sent to employers when a former employee files for unemployment benefits. It allows employers to provide information to the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) about why the individual is no longer employed. Responding to the report, which also collects job titles, dates, and wages, ensures employers have input in VEC's lawful decisions about benefit eligibility.

Employers are required under the Code of Virginia § 60.2-121.2 to respond to a separation report electronically. Employers are encouraged to sign up for SIDES, State Information Data Exchange System, to respond to unemployment insurance requests quickly, accurately and securely. When responding employers should provide detailed information about the reason for separation. The more information provided the better VEC will be able to make a decision on the employee's claim for unemployment benefits.

When Must Employers Respond?

Under the Code of Virginia § 60.2-528.1 employers have 10 calendar days to respond to a separation report.

Why is Timely Response Important?

VEC depends on employers to provide timely and accurate separation information. This is crucial for determining if claimants are eligible for benefits, which can directly affect an employer’s unemployment insurance tax rate. Prompt responses help VEC ensure that only eligible individuals receive benefits and prevent fraud. Failure to respond to a separation report can potentially lead to penalties under the Code of Virginia § 60.2-528.1.

How Can Employers Respond?

Employers have two options for responding to separation reports.

Sides LogoOption 1: Preferred Option

SIDES Registration (State Information Data Exchange System):

Developed collaboratively by the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) and state unemployment insurance agencies, SIDES is an electronic platform that facilitates a quick, easy, and secure response to unemployment insurance requests. It supports multiple users, making it suitable for businesses of varying sizes.

SIDES Benefits: 

  • Never miss a separation report
  • Free, fast and secure
  • Reduces paperwork
  • Reduces staff time
  • Allows multiple users

ESSOption 2:

ESS Enrollment (Employee Self-Service Portal):

The VEC’s ESS portal keeps employers updated on claims filed against their company. When you're enrolled in ESS, you'll get an email alert titled "Online fact-finding notification," indicating that a time-sensitive document requires your response. This is what is also known as a separation report. However, access is limited to a single user login, which may not be suitable for employers who use Third Party Administrators (TPAs) for payroll services.