Electronically Respond to the Employment Development Department


Employers in California used to respond to and receive unemployment insurance claims through the mail, corresponding with the Employment Development Department (EDD).   Now employers can save time and money by electronically responding to claims through the State Information Data Exchange System also known as SIDES.

SIDES can save employers time, money and administration costs. Using the SIDES program can also help with reducing common errors made with paper forms and all inputted information is transmitted safely and remains confidential.

Two Ways to Use SIDES

By using the new electronic option to provide accurate and timely information to the Employment Development Department, employers in turn are helping to keep the unemployment insurance rates down and can help by preventing payment to ineligible former/past employees. Most importantly the SIDES system will automatically start determining a claimant’s eligibility and the previous employer is notified whenever a new claim is filed. The new system allows employers to easily gather more information and can then respond in a timely manner to the employment development department.

There are two ways employers can use SIDES:

SIDES E-Response

SIDES E-Response can be used by employers that have lower unemployment insurance claims volume.  Using this program doesn’t require any extra software or special programming.

SIDES Web Service

SIDES Web Service can be used by employers that have a higher volume of unemployment insurance claims or employers that operate in more than one state. The employer is required to coordinate with the EDD and the NASWA (National Association of State Workforce Agency) prior to getting started. This option does require special programming software.

For the Claimant

The following are specifics a claimant should know:

  • Filing Online: According to the Employment Development Department more than 80% of claims filed are done so electronically. When you use the electronic system you’re automatically assigned a confirmation number which will stay with you through the whole process and will create a ‘paper trail’. The EDD stated that e-filing is processed significantly faster than any other filing type.
  • Updating Your Address: The EDD doesn’t usually use the address you initially used during your application process. The address the EDD does use is going to be the last known address that your postal service provides. Make sure if you change your address you do so through the post office.
  • Problems with your Claim: It happens. If there is a problem with your claim, it very well could be conflicting information from your employer. While rare, occasionally employers give incorrect information regarding employment.

The Process

To subscribe to SIDES, you must first enroll in EDD’s e-Services Online.  Once enrolled, you can use the same login and password for SIDES.  The first login will require that the employer verify their information, agree to the EDD’s terms of use, and subscribe.  Detailed instructions can be found here on the EDD’s website.

SIDES E-Response will be the most commonly selected SIDES service for the majority of businesses.  With this tool, an employer will receive an email notification that there is a pending request.  The email will go to the address on file for whoever first subscribed to the service.  Alternate or additional email addresses are not supported, so it is important to carefully consider the addressee prior to subscribing.

Employers will still have 10 calendar days to respond to the notice and can do so electronically online using the “Respond to Requests” link within the SIDES site.  All notices and responses will be stored for 35 days within the SIDES site.  Therefore, the EDD recommends that employers save an electronic copy for their own records.  If the employer is using an HR platform that allows documents to be uploaded for employees, this would be a great place to store this kind of a document.

A complete list of Frequently Asked Questions can be accessed here.


Here at PAYDAY our expert staff is constantly being updated on new legislation and updates from employment-related agencies and we are excited to share this time-saving update from the EDD.  For more information on tools to save time and increase efficiencies in your Human Capital Management processes, give us a call at (714) 467-3434.



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