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How to Write An Appeal Letter sample unemployment

On Behalf of | Jan 20, 2023 | Firm News

When you receive a decision from the Washington Employment Security Department (ESD) you can appeal that decision. You won’t want to appeal every decision made by ESD. Sometimes ESD will make the decision that you want. If they find that you are eligible for benefits then you don’t want to appeal that.

But sometimes ESD will make a decision that is not good for you. Examples of decisions that you want to appeal can include:

  • Denying you benefits
  • Reducing your benefits
  • Deciding that you have an overpayment of benefits
  • Denying your request to waive repayment of overpaid benefits

These decisions are bad for you because they cost you money. So you’ll want to appeal them in order to get the decisions changed. You can win your appeal if you have a good reason for it. And writing a good appeal letter is the best way to show the judge that you have a good reason for winning your appeal.

When to Appeal a Decision by ESD

When you appeal a decision by ESD you should try to send the appeal in on time. You have thirty days to appeal a decision by ESD. That thirty days is calculated from the date of the decision, not the date when you learned about the decision. So if you get a bad decision from ESD and you want to appeal it, then you should write the appeal and send it to ESD as soon as you can. 

If you file your appeal more than thirty days after the decision you are appealing then your appeal might get dismissed for being late. Your appeal being dismissed means that you lose, and the original decision by ESD won’t be changed. But that doesn’t mean that there is no point to filing an appeal if it’s late. If you have a good reason for being late, then the judge might not dismiss your appeal. But you have to tell the judge the reason you were late. You have to write the reason you were late in your appeal letter.

How to Appeal a Decision by ESD

There are a few ways to appeal ESD decisions. No matter which one you decide to use, you still have to write an appeal letter. The sample appeal letter below will help you write your appeal. 

Appeal a Decision by ESD Online

The easiest way to appeal a decision by ESD is to appeal online. To appeal an ESD decision online you log in to the ESD eServices portal. If you haven’t logged into the ESD eServices portal before you will need to create an account. Once you have logged into the ESD eServices portal you select the claim with the decision that you want to appeal. Then you choose the “Appeal” option and fill out the necessary information. 

Appeal a Decision by ESD by Fax

You can also appeal an ESD decision by fax. The fax number for ESD is 800-301-1795. Sending your appeal by fax has some advantages over sending it in the mail. The advantage is that fax machines produce what is called a “return sheet.” The fax return sheet says if the fax went through or not. So if you successfully send your fax to ESD then you will get a fax return sheet that confirms that ESD received the appeal you sent by fax. 

If you decide to send your appeal by fax then you should read and understand the fax return sheet. If the fax return sheet shows that the fax went through successfully then you should keep a copy of it for your records. There might be a question later about whether the appeal was sent on time and if ESD received it, and the fax return sheet is proof that it was sent on time and that ESD received it.

If the fax return sheet doesn’t show that the fax was received then you haven’t sent your appeal successfully and you need to fix that.

Appeal a Decision by ESD by Mail

You can appeal an ESD decision by mail. The address to send your appeal to is:

  • Claims Center Appeals
  • P.O. Box 19018
  • Olympia, WA 98507-0018 

Sending your ESD decision by mail is easy and doesn’t cost very much. It is an option you can use if you can’t appeal online and you don’t have access to a fax machine.

There are some risks to appealing by mail. The mail can take a while to get there. So ESD might not receive your appeal on time. And the mail can get lost. And if you just put a stamp on it and sent it without tracking then you don’t have proof that ESD received it.

If you send your appeal letter in the mail you should pay for mail tracking so that you can show that ESD received your appeal. You should also keep a copy of the appeal letter and a picture of the addressed envelope for your records. 

Sample Appeal Letter

Here is a sample appeal letter that you can use to appeal a decision by ESD about your unemployment benefits.


Claimant SSN/ID#: 123-12-1234

First and Last Name: John Doe

Current Mailing Address: 101 1st Ave

Apt 1

Seattle, WA 98101

Phone: 206-206-2062

Email Address: [email protected]

Letter ID # or Case #: L123456789

Employer Name:  WorkCo Inc.

Date: May 10, 2022

I disagree with the determination in the letter # L123456789. ESD has not made the correct decision. I quit my job but because I had good cause to quit my job I am eligible for unemployment benefits. 

The good cause to quit my job was because I received an offer of employment from another company. I received an offer for full time employment from JobsCo LLC. I accepted the offer of employment from JobsCo LLC and gave my notice to WorkCo Inc. that I was quitting as of Feb 1, 2022. My last day at WorkCo was Feb 1, 2022.

However, JobsCo LLC then notified me that they were shutting down all operations in Washington. I asked if there was another position available to move me to at Jobsco but there was not. I also asked WorkCo for my job back but they would not rehire me. So I applied for benefits.

I quit my prior position for good cause so I should be eligible for unemployment benefits. ESD’s decision to disqualify me for benefits is wrong and should be changed.