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Whats with Unemployment and Career Centers? March 17, 2010

Posted by jvmullin in 1.
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Here in Massachusetts there is a growing concern about a particular issue. That concern is about your UI benefits and extensions when you hit the one year mark in your endeavor to find gainful employment.

The career centers are encouraging you to find part time and contract work. They will tell you upfront that you can only make X number of dollars over your unemployment before it has an effect on your weekly UI check.

What they neglect to tell you is what effect it will have on your UI benefits if you are still unemployed after a year.

The eligibility amount is $3,500 to get UI benefits. I only worked a 3 week part time gig for a friends company and only made $2,300. When I went to file for my next to last extension I was told I was not eligible due to the fact I only worked 3 weeks in 2009 and did not make sufficient monies to collect. So now I am at zero income and no safety net left.

What others in Massachusetts are finding out is that there benefits are being greatly reduced because of their part time work. I know of a number of people who have gone from the maximum to $94/wk because of part time work. This places a further financial burden on these people and myself. It makes it many times harder for us to job search when we cannot afford gas to travel other than an actual interview. It hampers our ability to network as we cannot afford to buy the contact a simple cup of coffee much less the gas to get there.

So if you are starting or have been on unemployment and are working part time and /or contract I would suggest strongly that you go to your UI office and ask how this will effect your benefits down the road. The job market is going to be slow to recover and many of us will be unemployed or underemployed for years to come.

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Comments»

1. Mike Strout - March 23, 2010

Being self employed for 26 years without any W-2 income and spanning about a dozen different clients and states I ran into the harsh reality of not being able to file for unemployment at all. Last year at this time my 3 major contract clients, all manufacturers of electronic control systems (contracts were for field service, commissioning and programming Plus private design and Integration) all went away in the span of 47 days eliminating a very lucrative 6 figure income. Without the factory certification I was no longer able to service my own clients (the factories threatened to void warranties) so 95% of everything I worked so hard to do was GONE! They wanted the client base “Inhouse”!!
No help from any form of government and no ability to even take on new contracts till after 01/01/10 because of non-competes in place.
My reinvention is slow work is scarce AND even when the economy picks back up us old techie integrators will not be used!!
Good luck with your survival and in finding a new direction! With your credentials there in NO REASON why someone shouldn’t latch on to you and utilize everything you know!!!
Mike


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