The impact of COVID-19 on employer unemployment insurance costs

Local contact

Debera Salam

1 Jul 2021 PDF
Subject Tax

Many states are now lifting their COVID-19 restrictions, signaling a return to normal from the pandemic; however, the lingering impact to the economy will be long felt, particularly as it relates to state unemployment insurance (SUI) trust funds. Many employers may have noticed their SUI tax rates increased in 2021 because of the significant rise in COVID-19-related benefit claims last year. The fact is that the SUI cost increase for employers could have been much higher if not for actions taken by all but 15 states to lower the impact in 2021. Further, 19 states so far have accepted federal loans to shore up their SUI trust funds, and this debt must be later repaid at cost likely to be borne by employers.

In this special report, we provide a detailed analysis of federal unemployment relief for COVID-19, the impact of the pandemic on US jurisdictions and the continuing influence on employer SUI costs beyond 2021.

This publication is current as of July 1, 2021.