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I work in Wisconsin, but live in Illinois. Can I quit and collect unemployment because of commute and only working part time now?

by jill
(rockford, Illinois)

I am a gutter installer. We had a shop in Beloit Wisconsin which is 10 minutes from my house- the company closed that shop and i was asked to communte to the Mundeline office which is 2 hours away. I was told at first I could use the company truck to go back and forth, but now I am told i have to use my own truck.

I also had a partner who recently quit - my boss keeps telling me he will hire someone but this has not happened. I cannot do most of the jobs because they are too high and need 2 people to hang the gutter.

I went from making 400 a week to about 100.00 a week- i get sent home due to bad weather and the fact i cannot work by meself

I want to quit but am afraid I wont get unemployment

what do you think?

Hi Jill,

Well, first I'd say there would probably be good cause for quitting in Wisconsin and probably Illinois. You could file in either state... I think, but I have to ask if you have considered filing and collecting partial unemployment.

That is definitely what I would consider a win-win decision. It a little better than total unemployment because most states disregard a small portion of the wages you do earn before they start reducing benefits and you never have to count on less than what you'd receive for total unemployment.

You could look for a better job when they send you home etc.

You'd also not have to bother with any protest from the employer to your benefits and if they fired you because you started collecting partial benefits, you'd have a good case against the employer.

If this doesn't appeal to you because the employer is no longer allowing you to use their truck, or maybe they are not paying you a gas or mileage allowance for the extra commute, I suggest you find some Wisconsin decisions that would provide good cause for quitting. Here's Illinois.

Another thing to keep in mind is that Wisconsin's UI recipiency rate is 60 percent compared to Illinois at 37 percent, but Illinois pays more.

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