Senators Kerry, Reed move to stop benefits penalties for temp work

The Boston Globe addressed the issue of temp work and jobless benefits loss in Robert Gavin’s March 12, 2010 article “N.E. Democrats seek to fix unemployment glitch.”

The Globe reports that “Thousands of laid-off workers seeking to renew their benefits for a second year, not uncommon during this recession, were shocked to learn of the penalty for performing some alternate work while looking for a permanent job. When they do, their benefits are recalculated based on the low pay from the part-time or temporary work.

Those who do not work do not risk changes in their benefits when they refile for their second year of benefits.”

According to the Globe, senators Jack Reed of Rhode Island and John F. Kerry of Massachusetts will continue to push for legislation that will allow the unemployed to accept part time work without penalty of lost or slashed benefits.

The government has previously noted the increase in the availability of temporary jobs and considers that a signal of a possible upturn in the country’s economy.

Part of the trick here is that unemployment insurance is partly paid for by a former employer; so once you have taken a temp position, that new employer becomes responsible for your new UI payout, relieving your old employer of that burden. In a way, picking up your original claim award would be somewhat like making your first spouse pay alimony for your second divorce.

Making up the difference will have to come from the state, or else there will have to be more regulations regarding the duration of employment and related insurance liability. As we have stated before, each state handles this differently, so don’t expect this issue to be solved any time soon.

From the official United States Senate website, here is the contact information for state senators. Please note that each state handles unemployment insurance benefits slightly differently.

From the official United States House of Representatives website, here is the website list for representatives from all states.


Temp work and CA UI benefits: Why so tricky?”

H.R.4213: Hope for UI deadline extension, relief from ‘temping penalty’


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14 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. […] Senators Kerry, Reed move to stop benefits penalties for temp work Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)EDD: “Piece work” not […]

  2. […] Senators Kerry, Reed move to stop benefits penalties for temp work Published in: […]

  3. how do they expect you to live on short money

  4. is there anything the government does that not ass backwards

  5. well, after a year i’ll have to go on welfare then

  6. i’ll be damm if our government will take care of all the illeagles but not me – i’ll stay on welfare for life if i have to

  7. […] Senators Kerry, Reed move to stop benefits penalties for temp work […]

  8. […] Senators Kerry, Reed move to stop benefits penalties for temp work Published in: […]

  9. Remove temp penalty. If you live in Florida and your benefits got recalculated because of temp work – you are out of luck. The bill for temping recalculation is not retroactive – so your benefits will not change – so if you are now getting $115 a week, that’s it.

  10. The military’s allways looking?

    • There’s always that, Jack, if an applicant is young enough.

      Since we’re addressing that topic, what is the upper age for military enlistment? Are there opportunities in non-combat and civilian support roles for older displaced workers?

      Any direction you could provide might be welcome to a number of people. Thanks for commenting!

      ~~ Anne

  11. So then, I just won’t work. UI pays me more than any temp job ever will, and all the long-term “temp” jobs (6-9 months) are over 100-150 miles away from me. There’s nothing permanent here anymore and once the assignment is up, I’m unemployed again at a lower benefit rate– and now I’m saddled with a new place that I can’t afford anymore on top of my original place. Guess I’ll just cancel my lease and move into an RV. Then I can take a job most anywhere and live in the vehicle. In America, one can have a job or a home, but not both anymore.

    • Hi there,

      Actually, for those laid off in the last year or so, the penalty is no longer in effect. Depending on when you were laid off, you should be returned to full benefits after your temp job is over. As always, we caution that each case is different, the technicalities differ from state to state, and we don’t represent the EDD.

      Thanks for writing – and good luck! Hope you check back in and let us know how you are doing. There is a lot of good advice coming in from readers, so please stay in touch.

      ~~ Anne

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