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Duties changed, hours changed, schedule changed... really.

Ok my name is Bob.

Quick summary:
I work full time 5days a week, I work well and have no lingering or evident problems with anyone at work or my performance. I actually got an employee of the quarter recently. My position is now available because i am being demoted. The demotion is because of continuation classes I haven't taken, but over the years i have worked there, the issue was never stressed until recently. I was hired years ago with my employer knowing of my lack of classes but I still could perform all tasks competently if not better than co-workers who've got their classwork up to date.

I am being asked to change my duties, let's say from a manager(not manager but dont want to be too detailed) to janitor. Same wage, but about 8-10 hours less per week schedule that conflicts with my kids (after i've had my set schedule for years) and basically as mentioned before a big demotion.

If i were to quit from that situation am i still able to collect unemployment? Or my option is to not accept the demotion and not quit, but i will either be fired or just not be scheduled to work.

Oh no you don't Bob and I mean side skirt what's really important to know.

Let's first focus on the continuing education requirements the employer expected of you and if there was some "specific" or even "legal" reason for it.

And then, if so, why you refused to comply, before we even begin to discuss if the employer's action of demoting you, reducing your hours and therefore your remuneration rate .. might give you good cause to quit.

Nothing like leaving out the most important information when you want to know if you have good cause to quit .. which is where I'm moving this question .. even though I'm not taking new question at this time.


Comments for Duties changed, hours changed, schedule changed... really.

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Apr 01, 2011
Ok little more detail, should i keep this cryptic or just expose everything clear?
by: Anonymous


My direct boss doesnt have full requirements for her position and she sits untouched. There's no legal reason just corporate policy change, like i said i've worked here 6years and it hadnt been brought up until recently because another worker in my situation has caused rifts with the higher ups. Im not actually resigning, they are taking me off my shift and giving me duties that are not what i was hired for originally and literally is not what i went to school for and recieved training. If that's not a "loss of skill" case then i'll take it as a decision that's made by UI but i think i fall under that category.

p.s.- much respect to you and your site and what you do to help people, whether i fall under approval of ui or not i'll be taking a financial hit and dont like moochinng off of any type of system if not needed but i've got a family. my part time job and savings will suffice for a little bit until i find work even if ui cant help me out. Thanks


Cryptic is a problem for me. It causes me to have to assume facts .. and my assumptions just might miss the mark.

Loss of skills .. maybe the employers actions are amounting to a "constructive discharge .. or is is a constructive quit .. I always get those two things confused.

But we are now talking about a specific reason .. and that's a good thing .. but to get even more specific .. it would be helpful to know the name of the state .. so just in case they provide a precedent decision library of some kind .. I could link to a resource you should explore to build your case ..

Apr 01, 2011
k, here it is.. Bob fully unexposed and censored!!!!
by: Anonymous

im in california,
Ive worked at my job for 6years as an unlicensed nurse, doing the duties, charting med passing and treatments and competent in everything i was assigned. may be irrelevant but i also got employee of the quarter last winter. and my facility hired me knowing of my lack of license as we are a licensed facility to have med passers who are unlicensed pass meds who are trained.

Now a D.O.N. (Director of nursing) needs an r.n license to be a proper or acting D.O.N. my d.o.n. is an l.v.n. so she doesnt have the license to perform her title and duties yet holds her position and title (sound familiar?). again been there 6yrs and she hasnt attained her license and my lack of license was never an issue.

unprovable speculation as to why this mess happened-
(speculation ahead could be irrelevant but if not the situation stands the same)
Another unlicensed nurse stirred shook and basically blew up the pot and upset some high positioned management. in order to get her out they used her being unlicensed as the target to strike. but they needed it to make it with all unlicensed nurses in order not to be so obvious in their on in the middle of jan they made the rule that unlicensed nurses werent allowed to work in the department anymore. and gave 2 1/2 months to take the test (which costs 350$ total to take not sure if that's relevant).

i asked for an extension and my test date is. scheduled but they denied it april 1st was the deadline my test date is end of may. now of course i should get my license that's granted and 6yrs ive had to get it, but it was never ever ever an issue until that problem happened.

so i was offered a position with the same wage, but 10 less hours per week and change of duties to cook, do laundry, and clean which is not what i was hired to do and what i didnt go to school for, which i think falls under loss of skill as suitable to not accept the position.

now it was mentioned i would have to sign a letter of resignation which will greatly diminish my chances of ui benefits.also going on call will basically have me accept the loss of skill which will hurt my case
to be continued...

Apr 01, 2011
by: Anonymous

i have no true ill feelings for this workplace but if im entitled or have a good chance for ui i feel inclined to pursue it. i dont want to burn bridges but my company is notorious for denying and trying to get out of ui but i have a family to look after and my interests. my savings can only get me by for so long.
so the dilemma is pursue ui because i have a good shot? or dont pursue ui and take the on call position.

im pretty torn in the decision, if ui was a clear choice i'd do that 100% but because im not sure of how good a chance i have i run the risk of burning my bridge AND not getting ui. if i have a greater chance of getting ui then i will do it, if i dont have a good chance for ui maybe i shouldnt burn my bridge and go on call so when i get my license i have my foot in the door.

sorry for the long read, hope it makes sense, but for the sake of clarity this is the essay i've made. lol

thank you for your input Cris.
much respect,
Bob(not real name, but we need some kind of alias in all of this confessions of an unemployed employee)

p.s.- maybe u should write chicken soup for the unemployed u get enough situation letter emails and comments right? lol only half kidding.

Apr 01, 2011
by: Anonymous

btw how long do i have to file with unemployment?

-Mr. Bobbo

Oh my, so many details .. where to begin.

The employer altered their requirements and by doing so alter the conditions of hire.

Do not sign a resignation letter they give you .. write your own which clarifies why you are being "forced to resign".

So, they gave you two and half months to get up to speed and obtain the new license .. at your expense?

So tell me, why won't you be taking the test until a month after the time you need the license?

Apr 01, 2011
It's all about timing,
by: Bob

The only good out of this situation is that i will dedicate my time to studying for the license at that point i wouldnt be held in this situation and my options will multiply 10fold.

The nclex (state boards) test is scheduled for May 25th, I had been studying but I didnt feel confident and that i had gone through everything thoroughly. I explained that i would be doubting myself the whole time i would be sitting there taking it. and you can only take the test every 45 days, not including the time it takes to find out the results so more like 60days. and not only does taking the test guarantee i'd wait 2mos extra to retake it if i didnt pass, it does cost 350$ which isnt easy to make for me especially since i dont get paid an l.v.n.'s salary even though i do the exact same work.

in the letter i make, it should be short and simple right? something along the lines of:
"As i am being forced to resign after 6 years of service to "company name" I would like to part on good terms and this is a formal statement of our hire/layoff relationship. Thank you very much,

hey thanks a lot cris this is lot to absorb and actually write out even as i am the one in the situation. i truly appreciate it.

btw- i know with such a gray area of these situations its hard to say, but do u think i have an ok chance at filing for ui and not being denied even if the employer wants to deny? the ui no matter how much will still help fill the financial gap that is rocking my livelihood.

Apr 01, 2011
Whoa Nellie
by: Chris

Hold on there Bobbo I've decided to change your name ..

Just because I told you what a resignation letter for unemployment purposes should include, does not mean I'm certain you have good cause to quit.

I don't see you arguing a loss of skill case when you don't even have the license now required by your employer to perform your job .. You notice they are offering something else in it's place and that's for a reason.

"The claimant voluntarily quit when they were unable to obtain the required license for the job. Other work was offered and continuing work was available, but Bobbo refused to accept it because he felt it was beneath his non-licensed skill level."

And that's the long version .. usually "the claimant voluntarily quit, continuing work was available" would suffice.

But having said that, you also told me you requested in writing an extension to acquire the license you need to remain in your current job .. correct?

So there might be an argument that the employer not only altered the original conditions of hire, but were doing there best to prevent you from attaining the license .. given that they weren't coming up with the $350 dollars.

But I can see the other side of the argument as well .. if you're so great at your job .. and worried about "losing" skills .. why wouldn't you be able to ace that test.

So why don't you tell me where .. in the California UIBDG you are led to believe you have good cause for quitting due to the reduction in hours .. because Bobbo, a reduction in hours does not always equate to the same thing as a reduction in pay. I usually tell people in your situation to file a partial claim .. not that you'd get anything .. but I do know you'd be making more that what unemployment benefits would pay if you just up and quit.

Links would be okay or you could always just copy and paste and I'll make them live.

Apr 02, 2011
i understand
by: Anonymous

does the fact that i was working in the nursing department for that length of time, went to nursing school and performed at my workplace for the length of time that i did account for the skills i possess? would the acquisition of the license trump all of that, if yes then i guess loss of skill is not an option.

"Title 22, Section 1256-3 provides:

This duty may be satisfied by reasonable steps, including, but not limited to, any of the following:

Seeking an adjustment of the problem by allowing the employer an opportunity to remedy the situation if the employer can reasonably do so."

now here is my blunder, i asked for the extension but not in writing.

it was through no fault of my own, i do feel duped and thrown into a mess that was not my fault just a casualty of others fighting.

no sob story or request of sympathy, but fact is i did my job thoroughly and competently. im not saying that i was the best ever just that i was wrongly layed off, fired, forced to quit however the proper phrase is, it was through no fault of my own.

and yes that includes not getting the license. like i said, being unlicensed was not an issue and pursuing the test was costly.

it's all God's work from here and the interpretation from the interviewer i guess. emotion principle and morals should be weighed in also instead of just paperwork signatures and legal reference. that and there should be no war or poverty. anyway

thanks cris

Peace Bobbo .. I'm all for principles, morals and emotions.. but my brain keeps telling me legally informed decisions as to what actions you take .. or don't take .. make more sense when it comes to unemployment phone interviews and appeal hearings..

Apr 03, 2011
by: Bob

i dont like to beat a dead horse, but with the situation the way it is, you believe that i wouldnt qualify because they changed the conditions i was hired under right?

well i forgot to mention this, if this is relevant, call it fishing but it is also a little relevant imo, the position they offered which is below my skill level, was opened because the previous holder of that position went on mloa, she wss pregnant her coming back to reclaim the position would leave me where exactly, i'd have put myself in another set of problems.

also that because they offered me a job with 25% hours a week and completely different duties i was hired for?

the conditions changed were to take and pass a test that costs half my paycheck and i asked for an extension. as for acing the test cause of my great workmanship, the areas that my workplace cover i'd ace but nursing cover a pretty broad spectrum and so unfortunately i have to study everything my job doesnt encounter which is a lot.

i understand that the license is a key part to this but what about that i am willing able and trained for the job and that i've been doing the job for as long as i have. my employer had the power to let me stay they chose to separate but in order to have a way out of paying ui offered a position that is a slap in the face. again my position did require that i be a graduate and pass their entrance test and training, not anyone could get the job versus the job they offer where anyone can get the job.

we covered all this but i need to convince myself please humor me, tell me to stop whining or anything because the situation is mind boggling. it is literally as if they asked the ui interviewer to take a position as a janitor but he'll keep his same wages even though he'd been interviewing for years. (yeah i know license and qualifications but they hired him to do a specific job that requires specific training)

Apr 04, 2011
I'm full of humor ..
by: Chris - Unemployment-tips

Oh Bob, I'm more than willing to humor you, if you're looking for the dry and sarcastic.

So let me get to the point.

What I think about your ability to quit and collect is only based on my personal speculations which have expanded on the information you provided to me in an attempt to fill in the details I still feel I might be missing .. and are important to the answer.

I am giving you guarded answers to prevent you from doing something rash and force you to investigate for yourself and make a rational decision based upon the EDD's interpretive resource I provided a link for and for which I regularly provide to CA unemployed people.

The laws and precedent decisions decide whether the change in duties present a substantial change if argued well. Substantial change was a road sign .. not a permission slip to quit or a stop sign.

I'm approaching this whole subject of quitting for employees sake only ..

I've told you what I know about how an employer might present info to the EDD to initially deny benefits and force you into an appeal hearing where you would argue this as the good cause reason to quit .. for which you do have the burden of .. to prove the substantial change at an unemployment hearing.

I once had a link to located prominently on the main Q&A page. How to think like a lawyer.

Thinking that way is not something I enjoy doing nor something that comes naturally to me, but it is something that my job in unemployment appeals trained me to do by force by doing it over and over thousands of times, when it comes to seeing the possible arguments against unemployment benefits.

Objectively thinking about your personal position must be practiced when it comes to getting "legalistic unemployment benefits".

I know that I cannot, nor am I willing to crawl out on that "permission to quit limb" for you.

I could of course continue this conversation right here on the website and ask you specific questions to insure that what I am assuming is correct, but I don't do that for free.

You, can do that for yourself by studying that UIBDG and the CA precedents .. and applying your own faculties of rational thinking.

Or you can pay me to discuss the "details" .. in detail and get a real opinion about my objective thoughts for your chances.

Chicken Soup? Getting unemployment benefits is more like taking a "day after pill" that turned out to be a placebo .. in my opinion.

It's better hands down, to protect yourself from a denial of benefits, while still in the act of being an employee whether you get fired .. or you quit.

You can whine all you want .. for free, I don't mind.

But Bob, the benefit of paying me $50 dollars for an hour of my time to discuss YOUR situation .. is that I try to become you and give you the same understanding of unemployment benefits might work for you .. that I have.

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