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Collecting Unemployment

Discussion in 'General Appraisal Discussion' started by RAnnC, Nov 6, 2009.

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  1. RAnnC

    RAnnC New Member

    0
    Jun 21, 2007
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    New Jersey
    Hi all. I would like to post a scenario to the board to see if anyone has dealt with this or knows the legalities of the situation, or even the proper etiquette of how it should be handled.

    I am an employee of a small appraisal firm and have worked almost every week since I began several years ago. Occasionally work would get slow and I would get a week off here and there. Never more than 2 weeks. I haven’t had a single appraisal to do in about 12 weeks. I have not been laid off, the work just isn’t there. I don’t want to get another job that I will only have to drop when work picks up again. But I don’t know if I can qualify for unemployment benefits. I also don’t want to burn bridges with my boss. I work for a very small company and I have a feeling they won’t be agreeable to giving me unemployment if I go to him and ask.

    Should I go to the unemployment office to try and open a claim or do I really need to get up a little courage to speak to my boss about this. I think I already know I really need to speak with my boss but I just can’t seem to get up the nerve. I keep asking about work and I get the standard “work is just slow” response.
    Thanks
     
  2. Restrain

    Restrain Elite Member

    7
    Jan 22, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    Florida
    Ask your boss if there is going to be any work. Setting around like Oliver, saying "Please sir, may I have some more?" is not going to put food on the table.

    Realisically, a small appraisal company may be under the threshold for companies who have to pay or provide unemployment, but you should ask your state agency.
     
  3. Jay Emmar

    Jay Emmar Junior Member

    0
    Feb 19, 2006
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Illinois
    Are you a sub-contractor (1099) or W-2? If W-2 you might have a legitimate claim. If 1099 contractor then not sure but doubtful, at least in IL anyway.
     
  4. RAnnC

    RAnnC New Member

    0
    Jun 21, 2007
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    New Jersey
    I fill out the W-2. I did ask if there were any jobs coming up in the near future. Often they would say if they at least had made some bids and were just waiting to hear back. I guess it's off to the unemployment agency I go.
    Thanks all!
     
  5. TITAN1

    TITAN1 Sophomore Member

    0
    Jan 2, 2008
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Florida
    You would probably be eligible for unemployment but your boss will not be happy. Its you'r call.
     
  6. DTB

    DTB Elite Member

    23
    Jun 11, 2004
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Illinois
    Why would he be unhappy? As the boss you have 2 options, keep your people working (or at least paid) or risk them leaving and/or filing for unemployment benefits. Unemployment benefits have been earned by you and should be used as needed.
     
  7. carol109

    carol109 Sophomore Member

    0
    Oct 14, 2009
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    Michigan
    In our state, all employers are subject to unemployment insurance, it doesn't matter how small. It is not up to your employer to decide to "give" you unemployment. If he has no work, and you have not quit voluntarily, you should file immediately. If your employer thinks you are not entitled to unemployment, he/she will have an opportunity to fight this. It is a dog eat dog world, and if there has been no work in 12 weeks, it is unlikely that it will pick up as we head into the winter months. Your employer has already paid the premiums for this in the form of a payroll tax. If he has no employees, and doesn't return to having employees, he won't pay anymore just because you filed. If he does eventually get enough work to hire employees, he might see an increase in the rate he pays to your State for unemployment (fed rate is unaffected by claims). Good luck. File. You have to eat, too.
     
  8. RAnnC

    RAnnC New Member

    0
    Jun 21, 2007
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    New Jersey
    Thanks. I needed to hear that.
     
  9. BRCJR

    BRCJR Senior Member

    8
    Sep 20, 2005
    Professional Status:
    Licensed Appraiser
    State:
    Virginia
    Are you salaried or paid hourly. If you are paid a fee split you are salaried.
    The answers to your questions will be state sensitive.
    Be careful how you phrase or word things.
    If you "quit" because you are "not getting work" you may lose the benefits.
    If you are laid off you gain a better chance.
    Ask the "boss" what 'options" you could execute and maintain a good relationship with them.
    If you have been W-2'ed through the work career you "should" have had unemployment insurance paid on your behalf to the state, if the number of employees the firm employed required doing so. For example, my state statute reads "if you regularly employ more than 2" you must pay the unemployment tax.

    Just go ask the "boss" and have a Q&A session with them.

    It is all about communications.
     
  10. merlock

    merlock New Member

    0
    Jan 4, 2008
    Professional Status:
    Licensed Appraiser
    State:
    New Jersey
    I worked as a W-2 staff appraiser for a small NJ firm from 2001 until 2007. Business dwindled to almost nothing. As was protocol with the firm, I discussed filing part-time unemployment with the "head cheese" of the firm and he did not have a problem. However, when UIC (unemployment insurance compensation) papers arrived at the office, the other partners had a screaming fit as the head cheese did not tell them of our conversation. Without another word, I received an email from one of the partners to return the company laptop....wow! So much for not burning a bridge. Well, with that, I then amended my UIC claim to full-time unemployment. The company told unemployment that I quit when in fact that was not the case. After having a telephone interview with the Department of UIC, and having documentation to support my loss of employment, my claim was approved. My intention was not to burn a bridge, which is why I discussed my plans with the head cheese. It just happened due to lack of communication between head cheese and his partners. Again, it was a small firm..head cheese and 2 partners. You would think it wouldn't be that difficult to communicate.

    Before you talk to your boss, I would suggest contacting The Dept. Of UIC first to find out if you qualify. Alot of information is available online. If you qualify, then speak to the boss. If you don't, then no sense in speaking to the boss.
    Your employer is not GIVING you unemployment. If you are a W-2 employee, you are contributing a small amount each pay period into the UIC. Your employer contributes also. The employer does not like approved unemployment claims because their UIC contribution increases with each approved claim.

    Like you, I did not want to cause bad feelings. But, you need to do what is best for you. The reaction of my former employer just reaffirmed to me that they didn't give a hoot about me and my financial situation. They cared about themselves. If the company gives you the same reaction that I received, then you are probably better off, just like I am.
     
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