Can I get Ohio partial unemployment when hours are reduced.

by Debra
(Cleveland, OH)

I've been working at a hotel for over a year. At the time I was hired, they were desperate to fill cook positions and I took the job because of the hourly pay rate. It was a lower title (kitchen supervisor as opposed to Sous Chef) then my resume reflects but the pay was good and I had no other prospects.

After a year, and the bad economic turn of late, they had finally restaffed the kitchen with new employees who are much cheaper. Now they have cut my hours to one day a week. I took my vacation this week just to get a full paycheck.

I believe they are keeping me working one day a week in order to avoid paying unemployment. They have written me up twice and stated that I will be fired if there's any more problems. I think this is a bluff and they are trying to get me to quit. I would in a heartbeat if there were any other jobs.

I know I can't collect unemployment, but this is infuriating to me because I am not making enough to pay my mortgage and bills, and because I have been paying into the system of unemployment my whole life and never get to actually use it. This has happened to me once before with another hourly job.

Any insight would be helpful. Do you think this is a loophole in unemployment benefits that should be addressed with some changes in our current eligability rules? Is there anything someone like me can do about this?

Hi Debra,

First, employees do not pay unemployment tax. It is a program entirely funded by employers...which I personally think is a major flaw in the system, but that's a subject for another day....

I'm curious as to why you say you can't collect unemployment...have you tried to collect partial unemployment? Did your employer EVEN tell you there was such a thing?????

Now, Ohio is a little unique in that it's minimum monetary requirement for unemployment is so can actually prohibit low-wage earners from even qualifying....hows that for messed up, but if you do qualify, the benefits aren't half bad, at least as far as unemployment being only half bad can go.

This is the requirement to qualify monetarily for the minimum amount.

You must have at least 20 weeks of wages in your base period averaging at least 27.5 of Ohio's AWW (average weekly wage) Currently, Ohio's website says the AWW is $210.

Simply put, if a person hasn't earned at least 4200 dollars in any 20 week period in their base period (first 4 of the last 5 COMPLETED quarter or if necessary an alternative would be the last 4 quarters)they will not qualify.

Ohio, like most states consider a week of partial unemployment any week of less than full-time work that you earn less than your established weekly benefit amount ( last year the maximum benefit amount in Ohio was from $365 to $493 (Ohio does have dependent allowances).

Ohio disregards earnings up to one-fifth of your WBA (weekly benefit amount). If we use that $365 as an example, this means you could earn $73 before they start reducing your WBA dollar for dollar. This means someone who has had there hours reduced drastically would actually have a whopping $438 (gross, because you do have to pay tax on UI benefits).

Now, if you think your employer is trying to force you to quit or work up some good cause to fire you, my suggestion is to counter by doing some documenting of your own. It's probably to late to do this on their written warnings, but it is not to late to sit down and write a letter documenting all occurrences so far and give your reasons as to why you think the disciplines are unjustified. In other words why the employer is in error for accusing you of misconduct. Retain a copy....just in case you need it for use at an unemployment hearing.

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Jul 02, 2013
Interstate or Combined Wage Claim?
by: Anonymous

can i get benefits if i work in kentucky but live in ohio.

I'm sorry, I'm not taking new questions at this time and besides .. the question has already been asked and answered, as you would know, if you had spent a little bit of time using the search bar to find out more about interstate, or combined wage claims (CWC).

But, to answer your question specifically .. Potentially.

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