Unemployment Insurance Appeals

An appeal hearing is a fact-finding process to determine whether an individual is eligible for unemployment insurance benefits. 

The hearing is your opportunity, as an employer or claimant, to present your case to an IDES administrative law judge, called a Referee. The Referee, an attorney at law, will determine whether unemployment insurance benefits are payable.

​​ File an Appeal

  • Write a letter or complete the Request for Reconsideration of Claims Adjudicator's Determination​form within 30 days outlining why you disagree with the finding or determination.
  • Mail, fax or deliver this to your local IDES office. (Please note that local offices are currently closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In-person delivery is not available.) The address and fax number appears on the Finding or Determination. If the reconsideration is denied, an appeal is automatically sent to the Appeals Division. You will receive a Notice of Hearing indicating the date and time of the hearing.
  • Any documents to be entered as exhibits must be faxed or mailed to the Administrative Law Judge and any other parties in time to ensure receipt of the documents before the date of the scheduled hearing. Refer to the Notice of Hearing for the fax number or mailing address of the Administrative Law Judge, as well as the names and addresses of the other parties involved. Unless provided to the local office prior to the issuance of the Notice of Hearing, exhibits not in the hands of both the Administrative Law Judge and the other parties prior to the hearing may not be considered.
  • A file may be inspected by submitting a completed “Review File Request” (APL115F)​ to the local office where the claim was filed or the Agency’s main office at 33 S. State, Chicago IL. If the request is made at least 2 working days prior to the hearing, the Agency will provide the party making the request with an opportunity to inspect the file at least 24 hours prior to the hearing. For more information about preparing for an appeal hearing, please refer to the Department’s Appeal Hearing Brochure
  • After the hearing you will receive a decision.  If you miss the hearing, you can request to reopen the hearing within 10 days.​
  • If you filed an appeal, you should continue to certify for your weeks of unemployment, even though you may not receive benefits until the appeal is decided.


Read the Preparing for Your Appeal Hearing Brochure

 Mail or Fax

Mail or fax any documents or exhibits to the opposing side and the IDES Appeals Division at least 24 hours before the beginning of the hearing. Mail to the Chicago or Springfield addresses below or fax to the number printed on your Notice of Hearing.

Chicago Office: 
IDES Appeals Division
33 S State St, 8th Floor
Chicago, IL 60603-2802

Springfield Office: 
IDES Appeals Division
607 East Adams, 8th Floor
Springfield, IL 62701​ 

Additional Information 

  • On the day of the hearing, an IDES Referee will call you and the other side so both parties can states their testimony.  The hearing will be recorded.
  • Click here for additional Appeals information.​

​Appeal to the Board of Review​

File an Appeal 

If you disagree with the decision, you can appeal the decision to the Board of Review:
  • The appeal must be in writing or you may use form APL124F: Notice of Appeal/Board of Review
  • You must appeal within 30 days of its issue. You should state why you are appealing and include the docket number of the referee's decision.
  • A party may inspect the file at the office of the Board during normal business hours by submitting a completed “Review File Request” (APL114F).  A party may also obtain a copy of the record at the party’s own expense at the cost of $.25 per page. The request for a transcript or a copy of the file must be made within 15 days after the appeal is filed, or, if the request is made by the appellee, within 7 days after the mailing of the Notice of Appeal. For more information about filing an appeal to the Board of Review, please refer to the Department’s Appeal Hearing Brochure. ​


The appeal may be sent to your local IDES office, to the Appeals Division (above) or directly to: Board of Review 33 S. State St, 9th Floor Chicago, IL  60603-2802​  

Additional Information

  • Appealing to the Board of Review (English or Spanish)
  • The Board of Review will review all documents and testimony in the record and make a decision, usually without another interview or hearing.
  • If you are dissatisfied with the Board of Review decision, you can appeal the decision to the county Circuit Court within 35 days.