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The Unemployment Tax program collects wage information and unemployment taxes from employers subject to the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act (TUCA). The taxes support the state’s Unemployment Compensation Fund (UCF). The UCF is a reserve from which unemployment benefits are paid. Unemployment benefits are paid to eligible workers who are unemployed. Unemployment taxes are not deducted from employee wages.

Most employers are required to pay Unemployment Insurance (UI) tax under certain circumstances. The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) uses three employment categories: regular, domestic and agricultural. Employer tax liability differs for each type of employment. For more information, see Definition & Types of Employment.

Liable employers must register with TWC to create a tax account. The first $9,000 paid to an employee by an employer during a calendar year is taxable. Liable employers must file quarterly wage reports and make quarterly tax payments. Reports and payments are due by the last day of the month following the end of the calendar quarter. For detailed information visit: Reporting & Determining Taxable Wages, Employer’s Quarterly Wage Report Filing Options and Payment Options for Unemployment Tax.

See Domestic Employment for information about unemployment tax and domestic employee wages. This includes information for domestic employer registration requirements and reporting and paying options.

TUCA defines which employers must report employee wages and pay unemployment taxes. We refer to them as “liable employers.”

There are different criteria outlined in TUCA used to determine an employer's liability. They can be found at Determine Whether You Need to Establish an Unemployment Tax Account.

Employers should register with TWC within 10 days of becoming liable.

Employment is any service performed for payment or compensation. This definition includes any hiring contract, whether written, oral or implied. The three elements to the definition are service, wages, and direction and control.

For more information about types of employment, see Definition & Types of Employment. This page also explains the difference between an employee and an independent contractor. 

TUCA applies to services individuals perform for wages, unless TWC deems otherwise. If you are uncertain whether the TUCA applies for you, contact the TWC Tax Department.

Wages are the compensation provided to someone in exchange for services or labor. This includes hourly or salary income earned. It also includes back pay, tips, taxable reimbursements, severance pay and commissions.

Federal Unemployment Tax Act, 26 U.S.C. Section 3301  defines wages considered in the calculation of taxes. There are certain exceptions to the term "wages" which are listed in chapter 201 of the TUCA.

To learn which wages are reportable and how to report those wages, visit Reporting & Determining Taxable Wages.

Each month, the Tax Department provides useful hints, shortcuts, or helpful information to employers about Unemployment Tax and Unemployment Tax Internet applications.


“System Not Available” message 

The on-line Unemployment Tax Services (UTS) system must be taken off-line for a short period each evening to upload the data collected that day to our mainframe tax system.  We are required by law to process the data collected each day in that night’s computer tax run. It is usually only down for a few minutes. If you encounter this, please simply try again in a few minutes. You shouldn’t encounter any additional problems.

We normally attempt to do this late in the evening (usually sometime between 6:00PM to midnight). When user demand is substantially lighter. It is done before the start of the mandatory nightly computer processing of all data transactions from the previous day.  

The UTS system will be down longer on the last couple of days of the report due month due to the much higher number of reports that must be transmitted on those days.  We encourage Texas Employers who need to file their reports in the evening to file those reports and pay their taxes before the last couple of days of the report due month. 


TWC is required by the Department of Labor to conduct a specific number of unemployment insurance employer tax audits each year. Employer tax audits are conducted based on random selection and referrals from other departments and other state and federal agencies. 

The primary objectives of an audit are to:

  • Ensure compliance with the taxing provisions of the TUCA
  • Foster understanding by employers of the unemployment compensation law
  • Establish a relationship between TWC and the employer through the distribution of information related to the unemployment insurance program

Employment and payroll information TWC obtains may not be published and is not open to public inspection. 

For more information about tax audits please visit Unemployment Insurance Employer Tax Audits.     


Keep your account information up to date for seamless tax communication.  To ensure that your company receives essential tax information in a timely manner, it is crucial to keep your account information current.

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) regularly sends important updates via mail and email, which may directly impact your annual tax payments to the Commission.

To conveniently update your basic company information, simply utilize the user-friendly Unemployment Tax Services (UTS) system. By promptly notifying TWC about any changes, you can guarantee that your tax account remains accurate and reflects the most recent details.

To learn how to update your email address and stay informed about crucial tax updates, please visit “Updating Your User ID Profile" at Unemployment Tax Services to Manage a Tax Account - Texas Workforce Commission.

For updating your business mailing address, phone number, or status, we invite you to refer to our detailed instructions on Unemployment Tax Services to Manage a Tax Account - Texas Workforce Commission.

If you have questions or need additional information, contact us.


Domestic employers who file annual tax reports must submit their 2023 reports by January 31, 2024.

TWC encourages Annual Domestic Filers to file their annual report and pay the tax due online through the free online service:  Unemployment Tax Services (UTS) System.

If you have questions or need additional information, contact us.

  • Complete the General Information section.
  • Under Contact Details:
    • Reason For Contact:  Employer Tax Account/Actions Issue
    • Issue that you are having:  Issue Not Listed
    • Comments: Enter your question about Annual Filing.