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school and being called back to work in pa.

by ed

i have been laid off since april 2009 they told me it was indefinite and i should look for another job. i decided to go to trade school and collect U C but they called me back for a less paying job my ? is if i dont take the job and continue school can i still collect U C?

Hi Ed,

Are you receiving training benefits? This is an important factor and you should call the department. Training benefits may exempt you from having to take the job.

Beyond this is you're not it can create a problem because one of the conditions for collecting is to be able and available for "suitable work"

Suitable work like all things unemployment can vary with provisions.

Anything may become suitable after a specified period of time .. others say that any job immediately after filing is suitable if the wage offered is a percentage of what you used to be paid.

In addition to pay a state looks at prior training and experience and your skill level.

If you're not receiving training benefits and are just going to school part-time while looking for suitable work .. this could become an issue because employers especially base period employers may notify the department .. this means an investigation and possibly a halt to benefits until the issue is resolved.

I liken collecting unemployment to being a prisoner of the system .. or if you want to be kind .. an employee of the state and the only job duty is to beat the bushes to get off of unemployment.

So Ed, how much lower paying are we talking about and are you receiving training benefits?

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Feb 01, 2010
school and work
by: ed

i am not recieving training benefits and the job they offered me is 5 to 6 dollars less than when i was laid off.what bugs me is she,the HR director told me 2 dif times that i would not be called back and also i dont know if this is relevant or not but in 2 months i will be 55 yrs old and they want me to come back as a shop laborer,not even close to my skill level.tyvm for the answer

Hi Ed,

It's not really relevant that they told you you couldn't be called back .. the fact is they are now offering you a job and I'm sure they were the base period employer .. so they have a vested interest in what happens with your claim .. even if they did lay you off.

6 to 8 dollars an hour is a substantial amount of money .. depending on what you were making before.

Although PA is rather partial to employees in general and have a recipiency rate to back up this statement of my opinion, they do not do a very good job, at least with their website telling people how matters are decided. Heck they continuously misspell the word employee by leaving off the last "e".

I strongly urge you to call the dept. and ask them the question ..

"Will PA redetermine me ineligible for continuing benefits for refusal of work if my former employer offers a job which pays six to eight dollars less an hour?"

The word in all state statutes that makes the difference is "suitable" work.

If your employer had offered the same job you did before, but would now require you to travel 100 miles away that wouldn't be suitable no matter what they paid you. Distance is another factor that varies state to state and so is how much less per hour.

This is not an issue to guess and by golly with. This is an issue you need to ask about before you make your decision.

Hopefully, I can remove any trepidation about the answer you might get, by saying, I don't think Pennsylvania will fault you, if you do turn down a job which pays 6 to 8 dollars less an hour ..

Whatever you do, don't allow school to become the issue. If anyone asks if school was the reason for refusal .. say no, you would do whatever it takes to rearrange your school schedule or even quit if necessary to "accept suitable work".


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