Can I collect partial unemployment in Calif if my pay is reduced but my hours remain the same?
(Orange County, CA)
We are hearing rumors at work that the company is considering a 20% across the board paycut. Our hours will remain the same (40 per week). Is this legal? If so, can we file for partial unemployment for lost wages? Is there an amount at which we will be ineligible for benefits. I am one of the more highly compensated employees in the company, but I still can't afford to lose 20% of my pay.
It's legal. It might not be a very nice thing for an employer to do, but it's legal .. unless you would be making less than minimum wage or possibly if the employer is in violation of some sort of prevailing wage requirement.
Partial unemployment benefits are not possible, because you must be working less than full-time,which if I am correctly applying California's formula for partial unemployment
would need to be a reduction greater than 25 percent.
And apparently your employer also isn't feeling ethically compelled to consider reducing hours instead of wages and voluntarily participating in California's Work-Share program .. which would allow you to collect unemployment based on the lost hours .. instead of wages ..
So the question that matters now is whether a 20 percent reduction is substantial enough to be good cause to quit .. if that's really want you want to do .. because you will be making less than the 80 percent you would still be earning.
So where's the answer? Consider yourself lucky to be living in California where they actually do make a very good effort to inform unemployed people.
Can't find this information for every state and sometimes the news is bad anyway.
Your answer is in #5 on this this page.