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Forced to relocate or position eliminated - How far is too far?

by Cheryl
(Philadelphia, PA)

There's a possibility that my position will be transitioned from Philadelphia, PA to New York. We're being told that if this is the case, I'll either have to relocate to New York or my position will be eliminated. If I cannot relocate, is this considered quitting my job; will I still be able to collect unemployment in Pennsylvania while I search for another job? Thanks.

Good question Cheryl.

Wouldn't it just be nice if the employer "laid you off". Instead they present you with either uprooting yourself or quitting without telling you this.

When an employer moves the location of their business and tells you there is still work .. it often times sets up a trap as far as unemployment benefits if you quit due to relocation of the employer.

This happens when an employer moves within a city or a county. When the proximity is close enough to exclude the need to move, the wise unemployment claimant would start trying to find out just how far is too far to commute before quitting is found to be with good cause attributable to the employer.

When the company is moving location and in your case to New York, it becomes a change in the conditions of employment. The big question becomes if the change itself becomes good cause to quit. Would you have taken the job in the first place if it was in New York? No. That's good cause to quit.

There of course would be exceptions to this if there is an "employment contract" in which you agreed to move.

Barring this, if you have to move to another state to remain employed .. it is to far. There is no recourse to preserve the employment because the employer has already said the position would be eliminated, which by the way .. is a layoff.

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