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Fewer Hours or More Restrictions? You May be Eligible for UC

Without a doubt, the coronavirus has significantly impacted businesses all over the country. Stay-at-home orders have caused the mandatory closing of all non-essential businesses, and people continue to struggle to make ends meet without a source of income. The good news is that not only can you file for unemployment if you lose your job, but you may be eligible for workers’ compensation if you are receiving fewer hours or a subject to more work restrictions. 

Fewer Work Hours

So what happens if you are laid off or furloughed, before receiving an offer to be rehired for fewer hours? If your employer offers you work at reduced hours, unless you have good cause, you must take it or else you may no longer be eligible for unemployment compensation. 

Whether or not you have good cause is dependent upon the specific facts of each case. Examples of good cause at this time may include:

  • Your employer opens his or her business prematurely in violation of state closure orders; or 
  • You are at high risk of complications from the coronavirus but your employer cannot make reasonable accommodations for you.

For individuals who return to their jobs at reduced hours and receive a reduced weekly income compared to the same prior to filing for unemployment compensation, they may be eligible to receive partial unemployment compensation plus the $600 Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) weekly.

But what happens if your employer offers you telework? If you are able to perform your work, you are not eligible for unemployment compensation. However, if the telework you’re offered results in a reduction in hours, you may still be eligible for unemployment compensation benefits. 

How Can You Apply?

The quickest and simplest way to file a claim for unemployment compensation is online. Through the remainder of the COVID-19 emergency declaration, the government has suspended work search and registration requirements. 

Additionally, whereas recipients ordinarily do not receive payment for their first week of unemployment, they will receive payment through the remainder of the emergency declaration. 

To recap, you may be eligible for unemployment compensation if:

  • Your employer temporarily closes or goes out of business because of COVID-19;
  • Your employer reduces your hours because of COVID-19;
  • You have been told not to work because your employer feels you might get or spread COVID-19;
  • You have been told to quarantine or self-isolate or live/work in a county under government-recommended mitigation efforts

Those who are approved for unemployment compensation will generally receive their benefits within two to four weeks of filing their initial claim. 

The Attorneys at Nikolaus & Hohenadel, LLP Can Help – It’s What We Do

Filing for unemployment compensation may be a bit confusing. You want to ensure that you understand your eligibility and apply correctly the first time so as to avoid any delays. The attorneys at Nikolaus & Hohenadel, LLP can help. Now more than ever, we recognize the difference that unemployment compensation can make. That’s why we’re here to help you. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!