If my employer states that my position is being terminated so that I’m not being fired, am entitled to unemployment benefits?

UPDATED: Jul 9, 2012

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If my employer states that my position is being terminated so that I’m not being fired, am entitled to unemployment benefits?

I work for a company in michigan that does contract kitchen work for an assisted living facility. They decided to terminate my positionbecause it is no longer needed for production needs. I am technically not being fired but being let go. Can they force me to resign or am I legally entitled to unemployment benefits? Also, my director stated he may be able to get me a job at the assisted living facility but I would no longer be an employee for my current employer; I would be an employee of the facility itself. Would this offer deny me unemployment benefits?

Asked on July 9, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

1) If you are "let go" by your employer, you are being fired or laid off. You can receive unemployment benefits, assuming you are otherwise eligible, so long as you are not fired "for cause" (e.g. for insubordination, excessive absenteeism, violating company policy, etc.).

2) You cannot be forced to resign. The employer can certainly offer you something, like severance, to resign rather than be let go--but it would be up to you whether or not to accept it.

3) If the other job is more-or-less comparable in terms of responsibilities and pay to your current job, if you don't take it, that could make you ineligible for unemployment.

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