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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 11048
Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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We have an employer who is trying to force us to relocate to

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We have an employer who is trying to force us to relocate to another state. At this point we fly out on Sunday or Monday and stay thru the week then fly home on Friday/Saturday. It is proving to be a hardship on us and our families. The home facility they plan on closing down and we were told if we don't keep commute ing or move we will have to resign and lose benefits unemployment etc. They have been threatening to close down our facility for going on two years now, with it seeming like a reality now.
Hello and thank you for entrusting me to assist you. I am very sorry to hear that your employer is forcing you to relocate.

If you would be so kind as to clarify, what is your specific question concernig this situation? Are you wondering whether you will be eligible for unemployment if you refuse to relocate?

I very much look forward to helping you on this matter.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

They had promised servance pay back a 1 1/2 years ago if we worked 4 to 5 months then.. Now if we don't continue to work another 4 to 6 weeks in another state, they say we have resigned and will not give us what was promised. There was never any contracts or paperworked signed on anything.


Thank you for your reply. It would seem then that you have two questions--first, whether the severance agreement is enforceable, and second whether you can collect unemployment if you refuse to move out of state.

With regard to your first question, verbal employment contracts--including severance agreements--are generally enforceable, and so if your employer promised you a severance payment in exchange for continuing to work additional time, and you relied on that agreement by agreement to work additional time, your employer would be legally obligated to pay your severance.

From a practical standpoint, however, you may have a problem with proof. If you had any sort of email or text message corroborating the agreement, that would be helpful. If co-workers will testify that the agreement was made, that would also be helpful. If all you have is your personal testimony, you can still certainly bring the claim, but it will be " word against word," and so success of the claim will not be guaranteed.

With regard to unemployment benefits, the good news there is that an employee who refuses a relocation out of state will almost certainly still retain his or her eligibility for unemployment, even if the employer wants to characterize the refusal as a "resignation." While individuals who resign are normally disqualified from benefits on the ground that they became unemployed through fault of their own, an employee who refuses out of state work typically does so with "good cause," since employees can't simply be expected to uproot their entire lives to follow their jobs, and a resignation in such circumstance is thus with "good cause."

I'd just want to make sure it's very well documented that your employer is insisting you move out of state and that this is the basis for your quitting.

Please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding the above and I will be more than happy to assist you further.

If you do not require any further assistance, please be so kind as to provide a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you. Very best wishes to you and thank you so much for coming to Just Answer.

Patrick, Esq. and 6 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Great thank you


You are very welcome. I wish you the very best moving forward and I thank you so much for coming to Just Answer!


Again, please feel free to let me know if you have any further concerns. If I have answered your question, I would be very grateful for a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you.

Kindest regards.