Board of Review

Board of Review General Statement

The West Virginia Unemployment Compensation Board of Review hears and decides appeals of unemployment decisions made by the unemployment deputies in the various local unemployment offices located throughout the state. The Board of Review is composed of Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) and staff, as well as an independent panel, appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the senate, consisting of three citizen members who serve finite terms. The three-member panel's function is to hear and decide upper level appeals (appeals of the ALJ's decisions).

The Board of Review is completely separate from and makes its decisions totally independent of Workforce West Virginia. The Board of Review is a quasi-judicial (court-like) tribunal that is part of the executive branch of state government (located within the West Virginia Department of Commerce and Workforce West Virginia for administrative support and budgetary purposes only). This independence eliminates the perception of unfairness and provides due process and impartiality to all parties in the way unemployment compensation appeals are administratively adjudicated.

Filing an appeal

Appeals from the initial Deputy decisions must be filed with the local office within eight (8) calendar days of the mailing date of the Deputy's decision. Appeals from a Judge's decision to the Board of Review must be filed, in writing directly with the board or the local office within eight (8) days of the mailing date of the decision.

Administrative Law Judge Hearing (Lower Authority)

The purpose of the hearing is to decide whether unemployment benefits should be granted or denied. Anyone with an interest in the outcome of the hearing is a "party" to the hearing. The parties associated with most hearings include the claimant and the employer.

An impartial administrative law judge will make sure all parties receive a fair hearing by considering the testimony of all witnesses and other evidence. He or she will make sure you understand the proceeding and that you have the time you need to present any information relevant to your case.  If you are confused at any time during the hearing, ask the Judge for assistance.

Your Scheduled Hearing

You will receive a Notice of Hearing. This will state when and where the appeal hearing is to take place. Your hearing may be held in person or by telephone. Carefully note the DATE, TIME, and LOCATION of the hearing.

If your hearing is to take place by telephone, it will be clearly marked as a telephone hearing on your Notice of Appeals Hearing and you will receive a copy of all documents in your file. You must call the Board of Review as soon as you receive your hearing notice and any time up to two (2) days prior to the hearing date to leave your phone number. Please do not wait until the exact hearing time to call the Board of Review. Be prepared for a delay in the event that the judge has difficulty contacting all parties or in case the previous hearing is running slightly longer than usual.

You must make every effort to attend the hearing. Only if you have a very important commitment that absolutely cannot be changed should you request a postponement.


This appeal hearing may be your last opportunity to present your case, so be thoroughly prepared.  The Judge who conducts the hearing is not bound by the initial decision of the deputy and will base his/her decision only on the evidence and testimony presented at the hearing.

If any evidence was previously presented to the unemployment office, and could be helpful to your case, you are responsible for making sure they are presented again at your appeal hearing and to make sure the other party receives a copy of your evidence you will be presenting.

If you believe your case is complicated or are uncomfortable presenting it yourself, then you have the right to have a lawyer, of your choice, present. The Board of Review will review the amount the attorney charges you to make certain the fee is not excessive.

After your hearing

You will be mailed a written decision. You should continue to file for benefits each week while awaiting the decision on your case. If you do not agree with the decision of the Administrative Law Judge, you can appeal to the three member Board of Review within eight (8) calendar days of the mailing date of the decision.

Board of Review Hearings (Higher Authority)

The Board of Review will schedule a hearing at the Board office in Charleston. Parties will be notified of the date and time of the hearing. This notice will include instructions explaining how Board hearings are conducted. You should continue to file for benefits each week while awaiting the decision on your case. If you do not agree with the decision of the Board, you can appeal to the Intermediate Court of Kanawha County within 30 days of the Board's decision.

If you need special services, such as accommodations for persons with disabilities or an interpreter to present your facts at the hearing, contact the Board of Review in advance so the necessary arrangements can be made in time for your hearing,

Unemployment Compensation Board of Review
1900 Kanawha Boulevard East
Building 3, Suite 300
Charleston, WV 25305
304-558-2636 or 800-635-0189
304-558-1363 (fax)