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Old 04-08-2012, 11:44 AM
 
5 posts, read 150,246 times
Reputation: 29
Default If my employer puts me on part-time bases after full time, will that effect my unemployment benefits?

I was employed for a one year on full-time bases. Recently my
employers hired new workers and took many of my responsibilities to
them. He said that new projects are coming and he will give me
something "more important" to do. But two days later he said that
because our office is "very slow" at the moment for me he can have me
only on part-time. He sent me an email that I have to agreed to being
a part time employee.


I would like to know if I will star working for him on part-time how
this will effect my unemployment eligibility. (I believe that after
part-time work i will be eligible for much less that after full time,
and I suspect that my employer is doing this to me to prevent paying
full unemployment. I also think that they may fire me after part time
work or make me quit, and I would be getting much less in
unemployment.)


They told me to start my part time work on Monday, and I want to know
if I do so, will that put me in a worse positing? Should I tell them
that I am not able to survive on part time check and do not start it
at all?


Please help me.
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Old 04-08-2012, 12:21 PM
 
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What state are you in?

Absolutely, do NOT agree to working part time. In fact, draft a letter right now and make a copy for yourself before handing it to him that says, "I was hired as full time and want to remain full time. You're offer of part-time work is substantially less favorable."

Do not quit yet! I need to know your state because not all states recognize a reduction in hours as "good cause." However, if them putting you to part time causes you to lose your vacation, sick time, holiday pay, health insurance, etc., then that can establish good cause, or if the part-time hours means you will be performing duties below your current skill level or at a lower rate of pay, but you have to adjust your grievance before leaving, and that would mean you have to write another letter and give the employer a chance to do something about it.

However, at a minimum, and again based on your state and your new lower gross weekly wages, you may very well qualify for partial benefits.

Also, the act of complaining is not misconduct and filing for partial UI is not misconduct. So if you are content with being jobless and collecting UI, there is a lot you can do short of actually quitting in a case like this where they may very well fire you, and you'll get your UI and avoid a lengthy appeal process in getting your benefits.

But come back often to report. You're still working there. You want to get documentation. Like, if the employer doesn't tell you about the reduction in hours in writing, it would be worth it to you to keep working for one check so you have a paystub proving your hours were reduced. When he hands you that "agreement" to work part time, that would be a good time to hand him your letter telling him no, and you keep the letter he gave you as proof that something adverse was happening to you.

But with the reduction in hours happening on Monday, file for UI that day. There's a good chance also when they get the paperwork from unemployment, they will know you mean business, and it just might cost them either way, and back off.

Remember, the burden of proof is on you when you quit, so be collecting evidence. Bait them with emails, and hopefully they respond that confirms that this is probably a whole change to your duties, benefits, hours, and wages. It's more accurately a "discharge" and an offer of "new work." However, knowing your state will greatly help me in pointing you in the right direction.
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:00 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your response! I really appreciate it

I live in NY.

I do not have much benefits besides paid holidays. No paid sick days, no paid vacation, no health insurance. The initial agreement was that 9 month i will work without those benefits and after 9 month I will get the full package. Of course it never happened.

So the only "good cause" reason for me not to take his part time offer is - that I am not able to survive on part time income, which will be $1,300. Unemployment in NY is $1600, correct?
My house will be cut by half, so will my paycheck.

If I will take part time and will stay on it for 3 month, then my unemployment amount will be based on my part time earnings. Which I DO NOT want.

What do you say?
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:01 PM
 
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I meant my HOURS will be cut by half , not house...
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:15 PM
 
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At a minimum, you can get the partial UI benefits to make up the difference between 1300 and 1600, but you need more than just a reduction in hours. NY is ok with employers that reduce hours.

File for unemployment to get your partial UI, and hope they fire you if that's what you want.

Are your job duties changing?

How long have you worked there? Do you have proof that they offered you benefits at 9 months and didn't follow through.
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Old 04-08-2012, 04:29 PM
 
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So that you can find the things your employer is doing to to provide "good cause" to quit go here Section 1600-1700

From reading this you need more than just the reduction hours. You have to find more, and get the proper proof of it. Like if being part time vs your transportation expenses is excessive that changes things. If you have to move out of your apartment to a cheaper place across town, that provides good cause.

1665. Irregular, part-time or temporary employment
  1. <LI class=MsoNormal style="mso-margin-top-alt: auto; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-list: l21 level1 lfo22; tab-stops: list .5in">Good cause generally does not exist for voluntarily leaving employment because it is irregular, part-time or temporary. (U.I.D. policy) <LI class=MsoNormal style="mso-margin-top-alt: auto; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-list: l21 level1 lfo22; tab-stops: list .5in">Where claimant's job called for two or three days' employment per week (approximately 20 hours), voluntary leaving because of a desire for full-time work was without good cause. (A.B. 25,669- 50; A-750-1023) <LI class=MsoNormal style="mso-margin-top-alt: auto; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-list: l21 level1 lfo22; tab-stops: list .5in">A claimant who leaves part-time employment after layoff from concurrent full-time work is subject to disqualification for voluntary quit even if net earnings plus possible partial benefits are less than the full benefit rate. (Matter of Grandy, 64 A.D. 2d 796; A-750-1862) <LI class=MsoNormal style="mso-margin-top-alt: auto; mso-margin-bottom-alt: auto; mso-list: l21 level1 lfo22; tab-stops: list .5in">A claimant who leaves part-time employment after layoff from concurrent full-time employment does so with good cause when compelling reasons exist and such action is not based solely on the desire to collect unemployment insurance benefits. (A.B. 355,494; A-750-1962)
  2. Claimant has good cause to quit a part-time job paying less than the benefit rate when increased transportation costs, relating to that job, are caused by the loss, under non-disqualifying conditions, of a concurrent full-time job located nearby. (A.B. 409,186; A-750-2046)
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Old 04-08-2012, 05:52 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your help.

I've read the information you've provided and from my understanding I am not voluntary leaving, and for me to work part time my full time contract would have to be terminated then I would have to accept a part time offer even if its from the same employer.
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Old 04-08-2012, 09:09 PM
 
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Ok, I found your loophole.

If the reduction in hours, and the distribution of those hours cause you to earn less than you'd get on FULL unemployment benefits, that gives you "good cause" to quit.
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Old 04-08-2012, 09:23 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
13,615 posts, read 17,264,553 times
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I am finding it very hard to believe NYS would allow a 50% reduction in hours, forcing OP to become a part-time worker instead of the full-time worker she has been for the past year, and not allow a quit, as that is substantial change from the original terms of employment.

This:
Quote:
  1. Reduction of wages
    1. Where the employer altered the original terms and conditions of employment whereby certain disbursements by claimant, a salesman-collector, were no longer allowed, which represented a 5% reduction in his already meager remuneration, voluntary leaving of employment was with good cause. (A.B. 13,471-46; A-750-761)
    2. The action of the union in agreeing to a wage reduction and production method change, which affected all employees and which was ratified by the union membership, is a collective election by the union members and a voluntary leaving of employment thereafter because of dissatisfaction with such agreement is without good cause. (Ref. 545-1106-52R; A-750-1173; similarly, A.B. 18996-49)
    3. Reduction in pay due to elimination of overtime and inability to work during inclement weather, such work being optional with employee, was not good cause for voluntary leaving of employment. (A.B. 12,726-46; A-750-718)
    4. Good cause did not exist where claimant voluntarily left employment of 34 hours per week because the employer, due to shortage of materials, could not furnish 40 hours' work per week. (A.B. 5703-41; A-750-260)
Section 1600-1700
Item #4 says reduction in hours of 15% is not good cause. However, OP is experiencing a 50% reduction in hours.

OP, I suggest you contact a NY employment law attorney. NY is a liberal state. I cannot believe they would allow an employer to literally force someone to accept 50% of what they had previously been paid, by offering them part-time hours when they had previously been working full-time, and still consider that suitable employment. It is one thing to reduce hours by 20%. Recategorizing a worker from full-time to part-time along with a 50% reduction in hours and wages is a whole different story.

Let us know what you finally decide to do.

Last edited by Ariadne22; 04-08-2012 at 09:43 PM..
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Old 04-08-2012, 09:38 PM
 
3,586 posts, read 4,014,071 times
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Go to Google Scholar

Do "unemployment hours" and use the advanced search for state = New York at the bottom of the page, and read the case law on the topic. New York is TERRIBLE at recognizing a reduction in hours. I've never seen anything like it.

However, there were some refusal of work cases along the line of some refusing part time work. Those that got more than their unemployment benefit were denied and those that got less than their unemployment benefit got to keep them.

You also have to keep in mind that New York has that "days of work" criteria in their partial unemployment benefit. 2 hours distributed over 4 days at 30 minutes a day is enough to void your entire weekly benefit amount.

Here was a case of a 50% reduction in hours, and the claimant was denied.

http://scholar.google.com/scholar_ca...en&as_sdt=4,33

Last edited by Chyvan; 04-08-2012 at 09:55 PM..
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