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I'm collecting unemployment and have enrolled in school, but have now been offered a job.

by Lynn
(Ohio)

I have a question for you. I've been laid off since March 15th. I decided to go to school since there aren't many opportunities in my field. I am currently enrolled, and set to start on August 16th. Problem is, I am still required by unemployment to make 2 job contacts per week, until I start school. As luck would have it, I was contacted by one of the places that I filled an application for. The position would be over $3 an hour less then what I was making, and the place is a 50 mile drive for me (one way). Am I obligated to take this job? I would actually be making less then what I am on unemployment, once you factor in all the gas money I will be spending. I called unemployment, and they said that if I am offered a job, I have to take it, unless it would create a hardship. Of course, she wouldn't go into details about what she means by "hardship". I have already paid money into tuition for school, bought books and other supplies. I would hate to have to give up my dream of going to school to take a job that isn't even worth it.




Hi Lynn,

So they told you that you have to take the job unless it creates a hardship. Wow, helpful ..

Well I can tell you that if unemployment thinks the hardship or a refusal is caused
by school and that is why you don't want the job .. there goes the benefits.

I only mention this because I can't tell if the state has approved benefits while you go to school.

The immediate unemployment issue is "refusal of suitable work".

And since I'm not certain what conditions you are going to school under .. I'll include "availability for suitable work" and possibly just starting school while on unemployment.


1. Just to get the school question out of the way. See Table 5-12. I think you should read carefully, what the table says about Ohio. The way I read it .. it may be okay only if you worked full-time and went to school concurrently .. or if you are approved by the Unemployment department for training benefits. It sounds like you might be, but if not, you can always call the ODJFS for clarification:)

2. What does Ohio call "suitable work"? What makes an offer of work "unsuitable". Well let's just let Ohio explain with their legal abstract on the subject There's even a couple precedents to read.

3. For good measure let's also take a look at what available for work means.

Do not focus on the fact that it's not suitable as compared to collecting unemployment benefits .. that would be a mistake since you're collecting. You are unemployed and they really want everyone to go back to work.

And finally, the statute for Ohio unemployment benefit eligibility ORC 4129.29

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