If a person turns down a job offer of non-unionemployment after being laid off of a union job, will they lose their unemployment benefits?

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If a person turns down a job offer of non-unionemployment after being laid off of a union job, will they lose their unemployment benefits?

My wife was laid off. She worked at our local school district in a union position. She is now collecting unemployment benefits. She was just offered a job at the school in the same job field (secretary) but in a non-union position. If she turns this down because it’s out of the union will she lose her benefits?

Asked on August 17, 2011 Pennsylvania

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If the job is at all comparable, particularly in terms of what it pays--then yes, she will probably lose her unemployment benefits. One of the requirements of unemployment compensation is that the recipient be willing to take more or less comparable positions if offered. So if your wife is currently in an administrative or secretarial-type position, and if the job she's being offered is within the same broad salary band or range as the jobs she's had before (it doesn't have to pay as well; it just shouldn't be shocking lower), then if she turns it down, she may make herself ineligible for unemployment insurance. People who are out of work are not allowed to hold out for the ideal placement situation. Good luck.


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