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Joseph
Joseph, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 4823
Experience:  Extensive experience representing employees and management
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My wife has accepted a promotion out of state. If my company

Resolved Question:

My wife has accepted a promotion out of state. If my company cannot transfer me to a job in our new location, am I able to collect unemployment from California? How do I go about this?
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  Joseph replied 8 months ago.
Hello,

My name isXXXXX am a licensed attorney, and my goal is to provide you with excellent service today.

Yes, since you are moving to be with your wife, if your company is unable to transfer you to a job in your new location, you would be eligible to receive unemployment benefits in California, since you would be considered to have voluntarily quit your job for 'good cause.'

'Good cause' is defined as a reason that would make a reasonable person who wanted to stay employed in the same circumstances also leave his or her job.

From the EDD website:

Since it is the public policy of this State to support the marital relationship, quitting to effect a reconciliation or to preserve family unity will be with good cause provided the facts show the claimant's actions were reasonable under the circumstances existing at the time of the quit.

See here:

http://www.edd.ca.gov/uibdg/Voluntary_Quit_VQ_155.htm


You would be quitting to move with your wife to ensure continued family unity, so that is a well established good cause reason for leaving your job, entitling you to unemployment benefits.

In addition to the website above see the relevant section in its entirety below:

Reconciliation and Family Unity
Since it is the public policy of this State to support the marital relationship, quitting to effect a reconciliation or to preserve family unity will be with good cause provided the facts show the claimant's actions were reasonable under the circumstances existing at the time of the quit.

Of family unity, Title 22, Section 1256-10, Example 2, Comments provides:

". . .[A] claimant voluntarily leaves work with good cause if there is a need to preserve the family unit. The danger of disintegration of the family unit must be substantial so as to compel the claimant to voluntarily leave his or her work . . . . The fact that a claimant's spouse's reason for forcing the claimant to make a choice may seem unreasonable is not controlling. Rather, the controlling factor is the actual jeopardy to the continued existence of the claimant's family unit. On the other hand, where the nature of the claimant's job is such that a minor inconvenience to the claimant's family life style is created, but there is no danger that the family unit will be substantially disrupted, the claimant does not have good cause for leaving work. The claimant must act as a reasonable person would in deciding to voluntarily leave his or her work."

Title 22, Section 1256-12, Comments provides:

"Subdivision (b) (2) of this section concerns itself with problems of commuting relating to the claimant's existing marital status. The first provision is that a person who leaves his or her work to accomplish a marital reconciliation leaves with good cause. The reason is the state's policy to encourage parties to a marriage to live together and to prevent separation. As a matter of good faith, the claimant and the spouse must intend to reunite and conduct their affairs in such a manner as to reflect that intent. Further, the fact that the claimant and his or her spouse are legally separated or within the interlocutory stage of dissolution proceedings is immaterial since neither situation is a final severance of the marital relationship. Hence, reconciliation is still a possible alternative."

In P-B-230, the Board addressed family unity concerns. Both the claimant and his wife were from Pennsylvania. They moved to California when the claimant secured employment. The wife was extremely dissatisfied with their living conditions and wanted to return to their home state. Finally the claimant's wife told him that she intended to leave California, move to Pennsylvania, and take their three minor children with her, regardless of what his desires were. The ultimatum from his wife caused the claimant to quit his employment and move to Pennsylvania to preserve the family unit. The Board compared the claimant's situation to several other nonprecedent decision cases and stated:

"In none of these cases was the claimant confronted with the ultimatum presented to the claimant herein; he could retain his employment with the result that he would be separated from his wife and children, perhaps permanently, or he could leave his employment, return with his family to their former home and thus maintain the family unity . . . . [W]e believe that the claimant, faced with the ultimatum presented to him acted as a reasonable person when he chose to preserve his marriage and the family unity."

In P-B-334, the claimant voluntarily quit her employment to accompany her husband to Wisconsin pursuant to his wishes. Neither had prospects of employment Wisconsin. The Board held that since the claimant left her job for the purpose of maintenance of the marital relationship, she left for good cause. The Board further stated, the gender of the spouse was not a controlling factor:

"It is perhaps appropriate that we observe that in the instant case if it had been the wife's decision to move to Wisconsin, and her husband quit his job to accompany her, such leaving by the husband would be for good cause. For again, in that circumstance, the leaving would be for the purpose of maintenance of the marital relationship."

The permanency of the new domicile or the identity of family's chief wage earner is immaterial to the decision of eligibility. If the decision to move was the claimant's, good cause will be dependent upon the claimant's reasons for the move. If the decision to move was the spouses, eligibility will be dependent upon the criteria outlined above.


You can apply for unemployment benefits online here (the day of your termination or after, but within 14 days):

https://eapply4ui.edd.ca.gov/


I hope the above information is helpful.

Please let me know if you have any clarifying or follow up questions as I want to ensure that you are completely satisfied with my service. Please contact me first if you are contemplating leaving me a negative rating, as I’ll be happy to continue to address your concerns until you are completely satisfied with my service.

If not, please remember to rate my answer positively so I get credit for my work. I put significant time and effort into my answers, and don’t receive anything for my work unless you rate my answer positively. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and is necessary even though you’ve made a deposit. Please also rate me highly (9-10) when you receive your customer satisfaction survey as well.

Thanks and best of luck!

-Joe




Expert:  Joseph replied 8 months ago.
Hello John,

Just wanted to check in to see if you had any follow up or clarifying questions regarding the above information.

If not, please remember to rate my answer positively so I get credit for my work!

Thanks and best of luck!
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I replied to your answer with a follow up. Do I need to resend?
Expert:  Joseph replied 8 months ago.
I didn't receive any follow up. The website is prone to these types of errors. Yes, please resend.
Expert:  Joseph replied 8 months ago.
Hello John,

Still haven't received anything. I'll respond as soon as I get your follow up.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.

Thanks - my follow up is: I am currently on FMLA leave for the birth of our child. When should I file my claim for unemployment? If the company cannot transfer me should I resign effective the date of our move and then file my claim after my resignation is effective? Thank you!

Expert:  Joseph replied 8 months ago.
Hello John,

Congratulations on your new born child!

You should file for unemployment the date that your resignation becomes effective if your company cannot transfer you.

If they are unable to find you a replacement position, resigning effectively on the date of your move is a good idea, and then you can apply for benefits the day your resignation is effective.


Joseph, Lawyer
Satisfied Customers: 4823
Experience: Extensive experience representing employees and management
Joseph and 2 other California Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you

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