Hi Neil - My company of 20 years is eliminating my position. I work in the office and the only other job available is on the factory floor which I cannot physically do. I am meeting with them today to discuss my options. If I receive a lump sum severance

My job is being eliminated and I am having a meeting today to discuss my options. I have been with my company for 20 years. If my company gives me a lump sum severance package, am I able to collect unemployment until I find a new job? If so, when would I be able to apply for unemployment?

1 answer  |  asked Apr 26, 2017 08:21 AM [EST]  |  applies to Ohio

Answers (1)

Christina Royer

Whether you can get unemployment while receiving severance depends on the language of the severance agreement. As a general matter, the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services (ODJFS, the agency that administers unemployment) will offset severance pay from unemployment compensation, dollar for dollar.

This is so unless the agreement states that the severance payment is "allocated" to your last day of work (or some other time when you weren't claiming unemployment benefits). Most agreements don't say that, unless someone asks for that language to be included.

The same offset/allocation rules apply even to lump-sum payments. ODJFS will figure out how many weeks of pay the lump sum represents, and then apply the weekly amount against unemployment for that week.

Depending on how many weeks of pay your severance represents, it may be easier to wait to apply for unemployment until the end of those weeks.

If you have a long severance and waiting would negatively impact your unemployment benefit amount, then it may make sense to apply now.

This response is generally how this works. To provide specific advice on your situation, an attorney would need to see your severance agreement and hear more about the particulars of your situation.

I hope this helps,

posted by Christina Royer  |  Apr 26, 2017 08:41 AM [EST]

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