What is a Dependent
If you support dependents, an additional dollar amount may be factored into your Weekly Benefit Amount.
The State of Michigan’s definition of dependent is based upon state laws written for unemployment insurance. These laws differ from the federal laws used by the IRS to determine exemption and/or dependent status. A dependent is defined as any person who receives more than one-half the cost of his/her support from the individual claimant for at least 90 consecutive days immediately preceding the first week of the benefit year or, in the case of a dependent spouse or child, for the duration of the marital or parental relationship.
- Natural child, stepchild, adopted child, or grandchild under 18 years of age; or
- 18 years of age and over; and because of a physical or mental infirmity is unable to engage in a gainful occupation; or
- Full-time student as defined by the particular educational institution at high school; vocational school; community or junior college; college or university; and has not attained the age of 22.
- Legal father or mother if that parent is either more than 65 years of age, or is permanently is disabled from engaging in a gainful occupation.
Brother or Sister
- Orphaned brother or sister, or if the living parents are dependent parents of the individual, and the brother or sister is under 18 years of age; or
- 18 years of age and over; and because of physical or mental infirmity, the brother or sister is unable to engage in a gainful occupation; or
- Full-time student as defined by the particular educational institution, at a high school; vocational school; community or junior college; college or university; and is less than 22 years of age.
Individuals who are not included in the chart are not dependents and should not be included as such on a claim. The claimant is not his or her own dependent and should not be counted as a dependent.
Maximum Dependents Allowed: Compensation is allowed for a maximum of five dependents at the time a new claim is filed. Claimants are not required to show proof of dependents at the time they are claimed. The number of dependents reported by the claimant is considered to be true and correct. The claimant may be asked if anyone else is claiming the dependents to avoid duplication and overpayment.
Dependents are established when a claimant files a new claim. The number of dependents established for a claimant at the beginning of the benefit year will remain in effect during the entire benefit year. Claimants are not allowed to add or remove dependents claimed at any time during the benefit year. This holds true even in the case of age, death, divorce, birth of a child, marriage, or any other reason that may change the number of dependents a claimant might acquire or lose during the claim.
What if I Need to Change my Dependents?
If at the time of filing a new claim, due to misinformation or lack of information, the claimant does not provide the correct number of dependents, good cause is established and a redetermination of the benefit amount based on the number of dependents can be issued. The redetermination is effective as of the beginning of the benefit year. Claimants will need to complete Form UIA 1553, Request for Determination of Dependency Allowance, or submit a signed statement which includes 1) the request for a redetermination, 2) the corrected number of dependents he/she is claiming, and 3) the circumstances supporting a finding of good cause (i.e., why and how did the misinformation or lack of information occur).
What Funds does the Agency Consider when Determining Support?
To qualify as a dependent, an individual must receive more than one-half the cost of his/her support from the claimant. Funds used by the claimant for support may include wages and other income, savings, loans, inheritances, gifts, etc., which the claimant may use without restriction. Funds used by the claimant for support may NOT include monies supplied from sources other than the claimant for the use of the child, like:
- Public welfare assistance, regardless of the title of the program, unless there is a repayment agreement. If there is a repayment agreement, the assistance can be considered as support furnished by the claimant.
- Court ordered child support paid by someone other than the claimant.
- Social Security benefits based on a deceased parent.
- Armed Forces allotments for support of the child.
For further information about dependents, call the Unemployment Insurance customer service line at 1-866-500-0017 (TTY customers call 1-866-366-0004).