Hello, and thank you for contacting the just answer team.
Possibly, yes, because your employer moving to a place that you cannot reasonably get to is arguably a layoff, as opposed to you quitting. However, just to be on the safe side, it is better if the employer formally lets you go because they are moving (making sure it is not for "Cause").
There is a risk, if the employer wanted to fight the unemployment, that they could argue that you were not let go and in fact quit because you didn't like the commute. It would then come down to what the hearing officer thought was reasonable and whether or not you quit or were constructively terminated when the employer moved.
He specifically indicated that he will not be laying anyone off because it would cost him money to lay us off
Likely due to the unemployment issue (also because he would have to hire and train new staff).
because he would have to contribute to unemployment benefits
How much farther is this new commute?
so I am more than positive he will dispute the unemployment benefits
How much farther is the commute? Are we talking 15 minutes or multiple hours?
20 miles versus the 5 miles I am commuting now
And, I am a student, and I work during the day and commute to school at nights, and the new location will not allow me to make it to class in time in the evenings
So your answer is strictly a maybe and it depends on the hearing officer
I already new that ... but I wanted to black letter law as to whether or not there is a specific distance that would make it "reasonable" to commute
I am sorry to say, but your answer was something I learned first year of law school.
Unfortunately, yes. The issue is that the new commute really isn't enough to say that you couldn't reasonably continue. I cannot promise that they will take in to consideration your taking classes at night (they are not required to), and if your employer is going to fight it, you could have a fight on your hands.
There is no black letter law on this. If you are in law school now, you would know that often, there is no exact rule out there, and it becomes the perview of the hearing officer (or judge or magistrate) to make the call.
If you are unhappy with my answer, I will opt out so that someone else can take a look at your question.
Yes, I know that much. But isnt there prior cases we can look into as to how the hearing officers have decided in such situations?
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