When is an employee eligible for unemployment?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

When is an employee eligible for unemployment?

I have been with the same company as a per diem employee for 11 years now. The first few years I was working less hours but the last 6 or 7 years I average between 30-40 hours a week. Our company is in the process of being bought and there is talk that the per diem work will not be available anymore leaving me unemployed. Because for 11 years I have been classified as a per diem employee, I’m wondering if I will be able to collect unemployment?

Asked on October 27, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

The above addresses unemployment from a point of employee versus independent contractor... but there are a couple of other factors that are applicable to all employees (per diem or regular).  You must have worked for a certain number of hours and received a certain amount of compensation within the last several months.  In addition, you must work for an eligible employer.  Here is a link with a basic brochure on and who is generally eligible in Illiois and how to file:  http://www.ides.illinois.gov/page.aspx?item=888

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If you are actually an employee of this company--you are paid as an employee (they take out FICA, for example)--then you would be eligible for unemployment benefits if/when laid off. However, if by "per diem" you mean that you are an independent contractor (paid on a 1099 basis), then *in theory* you would not be eligible for unemployment: only employees, not independent contractors, are.

However, the reason I emphasize "in theory" is that it doesn't matter what the company calls you--it matters what you actually are. Even if the company call you an independent contractor or per diem employee, and even if you are paid on a 1099 basis, if you are actually an employee, you would be eligible for unemployment benefits. If you work only for one employer; if the employer tells you when, where, and how to do your job; if you don't advertise your services to other clients; and if you do not provide your own insurance, tools, equipment, etc. but instead get some or all of this from the employer, then you are most likely an employee in fact, and should be able to get unemployment compensation.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption