concerned about my health and rights for unemployment

my employer is renting a building that has documented proof that it contains black mold. if i was to quit my job would i be able to collect unemployment, even if my employer is not paying into the system

1 answer  |  asked Jul 28, 2008 7:23 PM [EST]  |  applies to Ohio

Answers (1)

Neil Rubin
Unemployment compensation/resigning due to mold contamination

This posting is not meant to: 1) contain my signature; 2) contain legal advice; 3) create an attorney/client relationship; or 4) guarantee confidentiality.


Dear Sharon:

If you quit, it will be a very steep uphill climb to receive unemployment compensation. The Commission rarely awards payment for people who voluntarily sever their own job especially in today's employment environment. You would probably need to prove that the working conditions were so egregious and the employer absolutely refused to fix the problem that the "reasonable person" would have no other choice but to resign. This is a very high burden indeed.

Now, in a prior life I was an environmental scientist and I have some specific knowledge of black mold. First, lots of mold is black. Some types can be toxic, (Stachybotrys chartarum) and other types can be just annoying. In any instance of mold infection, it all depends on the sensitivity of the employee to the mold spores. Just because there is black mold in the building does not necessarily mean it is harming you.

Further, if the infection of the building is not extreme, the mold is relatively easy to remove. (Provided it is not of the toxic sort).

So, a better solution would be to talk to the employer and ask that the mold be removed. Failing that, perhaps a call to the local Department of Health may get a response.

Good Luck,

Neil Rubin

posted by Neil Rubin  |  Jul 29, 2008 10:06 AM [EST]

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