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For unemployment comp purposes, employee quits the day she gives notice

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in Compensation and Benefits,Human Resources

Workers receiving unemployment compensation benefits are encouraged to take available positions even if it looks like the job may be unsuitable. As incentive, taking the job and then quitting within 30 days won’t bar continued unemployment compensation benefits, as long as the worker can also show the job was unsuitable.

The date that counts isn’t the last day worked, but the day the worker gave notice.

Recent case: Ulanda, who was receiving unemployment benefits, took a job with a temp agency. She is a single mom and almost immediately had attendance problems related to child care. She received several warnings.

On her 30th day with the agency, she submitted notice that she was quitting. She ended up working an additional day and asking for accommodations for her child-care needs. Her request was rejected.

Ulanda then reapplied for benefits but was rejected. On appeal, the court considered whether she had quit on the 30th day—which would have allowed her to collect benefits based on her original job—or on the 31st day, the last day she worked.

The court concluded the day that counted was the day she announced she was quitting, not the last day she worked.

The judge sent the case back to the administrative law judge to determine whether the job she had held for 31 days was unsuitable for her. (Wiley v. Dolphin Staffing, No. A12-0383, Court of Appeals of Minnesota, 2012)

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