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Tina, Attorney
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 33167
Experience:  JD, 17 years experience & recognized by ABA for excellence in employment law.
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Can I be eligible for unemployment on wages lost due to reduction

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Can I be eligible for unemployment on wages lost due to reduction of hours? I was a 40 hour employee and hours were cut to approximately 35 hours a week during June, July and August. I have a letter written by my director, stating that I work 40 hours a week. It was for my mortgage company to establish employment. I also have experienced hardship due to divorce. My employers are aware that I head a household with my income. I asked for a cost of living increase and was given less hours. This is common practice with the company, by cutting hours, not giving increases, employees are forced to leave and the company will not have to pay unemployment.
Hello and welcome.

My name is XXXXX XXXXX my goal is to provide you with excellent service today. I am sorry to hear of your difficult situation. Before I can give you an accurate answer to your question, please provide the following additional information:

Has your compensation been decreased by 20% or more because of the reduction in hours?

I look forward to assisting you as soon as I have received this information. Thank you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No, I do not believe so. The least amount of hours I received was 34 hours. That is only a discrepancy of 6 hours. And I believe 20% would be 32. My hours were always above that amount.

Thank you for your time.

I see. Thank you for clarifying that for me, Denise.

Unfortunately, an employee is typically ineligible for unemployment benefits if they quit and cannot prove that there was good cause to resign. Generally, if an employer has reduced an employee's compensation by 20% or more, that would constitute good cause. Since the employer has not reduced your wages by that much, you would not typically be eligible for benefits if you quit because of the reduction in hours. I'm sorry, but I would not expect you to qualify for benefits if you quit your job because of the reduction in hours.

I hope this helps clarify the situation for you. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need. If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Thank you!


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