Unemployment Insurance Data Validation
(UI DV) Information Center
What is Data Validation?
The purpose of the Data Validation (DV) program is to verify the accuracy of the Unemployment Insurance Required Reports (UIRR) system data.
States report UI data to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) on a monthly and quarterly basis under the UIRR system. The UIRR data are used for gathering economic statistics, allocating UI administrative funding, measuring state performance, and accounting for fund utilization. Therefore, it is important that states report UIRR data accurately and uniformly. States use the DV software provided by DOL to conduct the validation and submit results.
States are required to validate reported data every third year, except for data elements used to calculate Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) measures, which must be validated annually. Items that do not pass validation must be revalidated the following year. The "validation year" coincides with the State Quality Service Plan (SQSP) performance year. It covers data of any reporting period during the twelve months beginning April 1 and ending March 31. Results must be submitted to the National Office by June 10, which allows sufficient time for data validation results to be included in the SQSP process. States that fail DV or do not submit their DV results by the established deadline must address these deficiencies through the SQSP.
Data Validation Deadline Extension – February 2021
In light of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and state workload, the data validation deadline has been extended from June 10th to August 10th for VY2021 only. States may validate any report month or quarter for any population within the validation year of April 1, 2020 through March 31, 2021. Technical assistance is also available. For more information, states should contact their Regional Office coordinators or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The UI Data Validation Knowledge Management System (DVKMS) consolidates information from multiple sources into a single repository where users can quickly find information about any aspect of data validation and reporting for UI transactions and statuses that are validated.
DV Results for VY 2020 – September 2020
Results for DV VY 2020 are now available. If states believe there are any errors in any of the DV scorecards, they should contact their Regional Office data validation coordinator.
Data Validation Virtual Clinics – January 2020
In an effort to assist states with the requirements of the Data Validation program, DOL will be presenting a series of clinics that cover Benefits and Tax populations. The materials from the two Benefits sessions and Tax session are available on the right hand side menu of this page under the Virtual Clinics tab. The clinics are geared towards staff who conduct DV activities and IT staff who prepare and analyze extract files.
New Federal Templates for Module 3 – March 2019
US DOL published new federal templates for Module 3, Benefits and Tax to align references to ETA HB 401, UI Reports with the most recent edition. In the "federal definition" portion of the Module, the 401 HB reference refers to the section ("Sec") of the handbook where the corresponding report can be found (Sec I, II, etc). The chapter ("Ch") refers to the chapter with the associated report definition. For instance, the new federal template of Module 3 for Benefits will refer to the 227 report (Overpayment Detection and Recovery Activities) as located in ETA 401, Sec IV, Ch 2 of the 5th edition.
New Question and Answer Document Available
US DOL hosted an "Ask Me Anything" style webinar on April 10, 2018. The written responses with helpful hyperlinks are now available here.
DV Staff Refresher Training
US DOL hosted an online staff refresher training on Thursday March 23rd. The recording of this training begins at the 5 minute 50 second mark from the WebEx link listed below. The PowerPoint and a question and answer guide from the session are available under Supplemental Guidance on the right hand side menu of this page. To listen to the recording, please download the WebEx Training video.
Module 3 Upgrade and Module 4 Benefit Timeliness and Quality (BTQ) 3 Change
The Module 3 application has been updated to include a "Show All" option that will allow states to edit the entire document as a whole instead of by individual steps. This is intended to assist states that are undergoing modernization to their data management systems and thus require completely new information be included in the Module 3 "road map". States are reminded to save their work frequently to avoid lost updates if technical issues arise.
For Benefits Module 4 - BTQ 3, an adjustment line has been added to the worksheet to account for a change in the universe size due to withdrawn or dismissed appeals. The software will use the adjusted total to calculate the expected interval size used by the state during their sampling procedure. This change will likely improve the correctness of the interval size and therefore capture more accurate information from the state.
High Dollar Overpayment Threshold Update
The High Dollar Overpayments threshold in Population 12 has been increased in the DV SUN system to align with guidance issued in Unemployment Insurance Program Letter No. 08-12, Change 1. The $25,000 threshold will affect lines 112 and 113 in Section A of the Overpayment Detection and Recovery Activities or ETA 227 report. Any state that wishes to validate the population with data prior to the quarter ending on 9/30/2015 that uses the previous $5,000 threshold are encouraged to contact their Regional Office after submitting Population 12 validation results. On an as needed basis, if all other report and sample validations pass, the population score may be manually changed if the SUN system does not recognize the threshold limit used by the state. Existing supplemental guidance on High Dollar Overpayments will be updated on the DV webpage to reflect the new threshold amount.
TOP Validation in Benefits Population 13
Pending Treasury clearance of a permanent method for validating amounts recovered through the Treasury Offset Program (TOP), when building a DV Population 13 extract file, states should not include records for amounts recovered through TOP because such records are considered to contain Federal Tax Information. Also, if those recoveries entail the creation of records for Additions, states should not build such records either. States should go through all the usual steps to conduct the Population 13 validation and submit the results. DOL staff will manually pass the Population if (a) it only fails because Group 13.01, 227 Recovered($) and/or Group 13.04, 227 Additions($) fails, and (b) that failure is due to the discrepancies between reported and validation counts in the six "Federal Offset" cells on line 314 of the 227 and in Additions Total.
Due to recent DV application issues, the following recommendations are suggested for states:
- Import one population file at a time.
- Wait for the data import file to finish loading completely; do not try to re-import the same file until system has indicated it is complete.
- If the data import did not finish or is still running after more than 6 hours, contact USDOL DV point of contact.
- If import file is large, consider importing after peak business hours.
- Due to the large volume of files being imported during the peak DV submission window (April-June), states may need to wait up to 30 minutes after a data import is complete before attempting to load a data file in the application for a different population.
- When completing the Module 4 worksheets, states should click to the right of the page by the “score” column after entering or selecting a value in each row of the worksheet. If the validate scores button does not validate the worksheet, the state should share a screen shot with the technical support hotline by emailing email@example.com or calling 1-800-473-0188
The DV software used to track results only saves the most recently transmitted submission
- DOL saves only the most recent submission of any DV population. If the state submits a failing score in March, it should uncover the cause of the failure and correct it, repeat the validation activity in April, and submit it in May as passing. The only score saved and used for SQSP/CAP purposes is the passing submission from May.
- Remember – each extract file import changes the cases pulled for the random samples that make up Data Element Validation when "view samples" is selected from the drop down menu for a population.
Take a screen shot of the import message screen once the extract file has finished loading
- This screen appears only once – even though there is a "view import messages" option on the drop down menu on the home screen in the SUN system.
- The screen shot will indicate that file is error free and all the data was imported correctly, which is helpful for Regional Monitors during reviews at the state agencies.
Common Errors include duplicates and "date out of range" messages
- Before Extract File is imported, the state makes sure dates are in the correct format ("mm/dd/yyyy") and fall within the report date range of the period being validated.
- For example, Benefits Population 1 validates the 5159 report: to validate September 2016, the appropriate date range and format would be the weeks claimed between 09/01/2016 and 09/30/2016