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Labor and Economic Opportunity


  • Work Search Waivers


  • A waiver of the work search requirement may be granted due to certain COVID-19 related reasons.  Claimants can apply for a waiver online by logging into their Michigan Web Account Manager (MiWAM) or by calling the UIA Customer Service line at 1-866-500-0017. You must apply and be approved for the waiver before you certify for benefits for the bi-weekly certification period. You will be notified at the time of the request whether a waiver of the requirement is granted.

    Claimants can begin applying for a work search waiver May 30, 2021.

How to Apply

How to Apply Online for a COVID-19 Work Search Waiver

    • Log into your MiWAM account.
    • Under the Claimant Services tab, click on "Request a COVID-19 Work Search Waiver."
    • Answer the questions and click submit.

    A confirmation page will let you know if your waiver is approved or denied.  If approved, the confirmation page will provide the dates of the approved waiver. A waiver may be from 2 weeks up to Sept. 4, 2021.

You May Be Eligible

Eligible COVID-19 Related Reasons

  • You may be eligible for a COVID-19 waiver if:

    • The individual has a current COVID-19 diagnosis within the last 14 days.
    • A member of the individual's household has a current diagnosis of COVID-19 within the last 14 days.
    • The individual is providing care for a family member or a member of the individual's household who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 within the last 14 days.
    • The individual was previously diagnosed with COVID-19, and COVID-19 caused health complications that renders the individual objectively unable to perform their job with or without a reasonable accommodation.
    • The individual is under self-isolation or self-quarantine in response to an elevated risk from COVID-19.
      • Elevated risk includes but is not limited to those who are immuno-compromised, older adults (age 65 and older), pregnant individuals, individuals with a specific disease or chronic condition such as cancer, heart disease, or lung disease, and those with specific medications or treatments like steroids, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, dialysis, stem cell, bone marrow, or organ transplant.
    • A child or other person in the household for which the individual has primary caregiving responsibility is unable to attend school or another facility that is closed as a direct result of the COVID-19 public health emergency and such school or facility care is required for the individual to work.
      • The individual is only exempted from the work search requirement if the school or facility care is not available 100% in person. For example, if the school provides an option between 100% in person or 100% online instruction, the individual is not eligible for the work search waiver. If the school is available through a hybrid of online and in person instruction, the individual is eligible for the work search waiver because the school is not available 100% in person. 
    • The individual is unable to work because the individual has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to concerns related to COVID-19.
    • If you are receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and you are self-employed, you are not required to apply for a waiver. A waiver will be automatically granted.

Other Work Search Waivers

Other Work Search Waivers

  • Temporary Layoff - Registration and Seeking Work Waiver

    If you are expected to return to full-time work with your employer within 45 days from the date you filed or reopened your claim, your employer can request that you be waived from the work search requirements. The employer is required to request this waiver before laying off workers.  If an employer has requested and been approved for a 45-day waiver, your Monetary Determination will state that you have been waived from the work search requirement.

    Temporary Layoff - Short-Term Waiver

    If you are laid off and expect to return to work within 15 days of your layoff date, you can apply for a work search waiver at the time you file your claim.  If approved, your Monetary Determination will state that you have been waived from the work search requirement. 

    Training Waiver

    If you are in school attending an approved course of study, you may qualify for a training waiver which also waives the work search requirement.  To apply for a training waiver, you must contact a Michigan Works! Office. Michigan Works will assist you with the application submission to UIA. If approved, the work search requirement will be waived.