Work Sharing: An Alternative to Layoffs - Frequently Asked Questions

Economic hard times and continuing high unemployment have spurred interest in a provision in federal unemployment insurance (UI) law that allows states to enact work sharing programs. Six states (Colorado, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oklahoma, and Pennsylvania) and the District of Columbia have adopted work sharing legislation since 2009, bringing the total number of programs to 24. As the nation’s economic recovery remains weak, a growing number of businesses are searching for ways to weather the economic downturn and retain their workforce. Work sharing has become a viable alternative to layoffs in states that have these programs in place.

This fact sheet by Neil Ridley and David Balducchi provides answers to frequently asked questions about state work-sharing programs.