Monday, January 27, 2014

Can I Get Unemployment if I am Out on Disability Leave?

Can I Receive Unemployment Compensation Benefits if I am Out on Sick Leave?

Yes.  However, it may be a somewhat tricky proposition.

What is the Difference Between Short-Term Disability and Long-Term Disability?

If You are Out of FMLA, You Will Likely Need Only STD Benefits
Short-term disability pay can last up to 6 months, while long-term disability pay can last a lifetime. In addition, while STD benefits are granted upon proof that the employee cannot perform his/her job, a claimant often must prove that he/she cannot work in any job.

Consequently, it is much more difficult to secure long-term disability benefits than it is short-term.

You May be Eligible for Unemployment Benefits if You Are Out on FMLA Leave Due to Your Own Medical Condition

Here is the key: 

If you are able to perform some, but not all, all your job duties, and are therefore either placed on leave by your employer or forced to take leave, you may be eligible for Unemployment Benefits provided that you are able and available for suitable work. 

Lawyer in Chester County Pennsylvania explains How Does the Family and Medical Leave Act Work in Pennsylvania?

Very Powerful Law Protects Employees Who Need to
Miss Work Due to Injury or Illness From Termination
NOTE:  If you are out on leave to care for a family member who is ill or injured who is injured, you may be entitled to UC Benefits and FMLA Leave but, since you are not disabled, you will not qualify for STD benefits. Click Here for more.

I am Out on Pregnancy Leave - Am I Allowed to Get Unemployment Benefits?

Here is a classic (and rather common) example:

If You Are Pregnant, You May be Eligible
 for Unemployment Compensation Benefits
Nurses' Assistant ("NA") who is pregnant has note from doctor saying she cannot engage in heavy lifting, which is about 20% of her job, and therefore needs light duty.  NA gives note to employer. Employer says it does not offer light duty and that NA must go out on FMLA Leave.

NA goes out on FMLA Leave, and files for UC Benefits.

She is likely eligible for UC Benefits because her request for light duty was reasonable and supported by a doctor's note, and she is able to perform a wide variety of jobs for which she is qualified (just not the heavy lifting function).

Disability Leave and Unemployment Compensation Claims Can Go Together

These cases can be very tricky.  However, they are quite winnable.  I suggest, though, that you seek counsel before you actually present your doctor's note to the company.  Companies know how this works, and may try and do an end around to stop you from getting UC Benefits.

If it is too late for such strategizing because you are already in the UC Claims process, then you can certainly still win, but these are among the trickiest UC cases, so you may want to retain an attorney to help you.

Pennsylvania lawyer's Answers to Frequently Asked Questions About Pennsylvania Unemployment Law

Check out John's Video on how the Family and Medical Leave Act works in conjunction with Short-Term Disability Benefits

Philadelphia Unemployment Lawyer Handling Referee Hearings in Malvern, Norristown, Springfield, Bristol and Philadelphia

John A. Gallagher
Helping Employees Since 1991
Philadelphia Area Employment Attorney Representing Employees
John A. Gallagher is an employment lawyer who represents employees in Pennsylvania. 

John typically represents employees who need an employment lawyer in Philadelphia County, Chester County, Delaware County, Bucks County, Berks County, Lancaster County and Montgomery County.

Pennsylvania Employment Attorney Provides Free Telephone Consultations

If you are looking for an employment lawyer, and live in Malvern, Wayne, King of Prussia, Downingtown, Glenside, Doylestown, Radnor, Newtown Square, Exton, Philadelphia, West Chester, Skippack, Langhorne, Haverford, Nether Providence, Broomall, Drexel Hill, Reading or any of their surrounding towns, feel free to send me an e-mail or give me a call.  I am always glad to spend some time with people via a free telephone consultation.

Need an Employment Labor Lawyer Near Philadelphia?

Click Here if you have questions about any aspect of employment law, from wrongful termination, to wage and overtime claims, to discrimination and retaliation laws, to Family and Medical Leave

Click Here if you have questions about any aspect of Pennsylvania Unemployment Law, from willful misconduct, to voluntary quit, to Referee Hearings, to severance issues

Click Here to e-mail John directly.

Thanks for checking in with us.

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