If my company will be sold in the coming weeks, shouldn’t my employer be required to offer severance or consider me laid off so that I can collect unemployment?

The new company interviewed our office, but has not made any official job offers to anyone. My current company is not offering any sort of severance package. I can’t accept a job offer from the new company because it would mean relocating too far away.

Asked on December 1, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Perhaps morally or ethically they should provide severance, but they are not legally required to offer severance: the law *never* requires severance unless you have a written employment contract guarantying it. If and when you are actually laid off, you can start collecting unemployment, but not while still employed, even if you and everyone else knows the end is coming soon.

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