Have evidence to back up claim for jobless benefits

Can They Do That?

Your Money

October 10, 2004|By Carrie Mason-Draffen

A while back, I was released from my company. When I went to apply for unemployment, I found out that the company had falsely told the state unemployment benefits office I had quit and was therefore ineligible for unemployment. After several meetings with unemployment and a letter from a former co-worker confirming that I didn't quit, I started receiving benefits. How can I protect myself against this happening again? After talking to people, I found that employers frequently try to keep employees from receiving unemployment.

You've already taken the most important step in that direction: You fought back by pressing your claim with your state's labor department and in doing so presented solid evidence to back up that claim.

It's impossible to foresee every angle when a supervisor wants to play dirty pool. But the next time you are laid off, be sure to obtain a letter from the company before you file an unemployment claim stating what happened. One inconspicuous way to do that is to ask your supervisor for a letter of recommendation that explains why you are without a job.

Appealing to the department and having evidence to back up your claim are your best bets.

Carrie Mason-Draffen is a columnist for Newsday, a Tribune Publishing newspaper. E-mail her at yourmoney@tribune.com.

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