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Does part-time work affect unemployment benefits?

December 18, 2012: 6:30 AM ET

My husband was just laid off from his full-time job with the state of New York. He also has a part-time job on the weekend. Can he file for unemployment benefits and will they be impacted by his part-time job? — N.R.

Your husband can still apply for partial benefits with a part-time job, but those benefits will be reduced depending on how many days he works in a given week and how much he makes.

The precise rules vary by state. In your state, New York, a person may apply for partial benefits as long as he or she works fewer than four days a week and makes $405 or less during any given week, explains Jennifer Krinsky, press officer at the New York State Department of Labor. Each full or partial day of work causes your benefits to drop by one quarter for that week.

For instance, if your full benefit is calculated at $200 per week and you work one day in a given week, your benefit will drop to $150. If you work two days that week, the benefit for that week drops to $100. Any week you work for four or more days or earn more than $405 disqualifies you for that week's benefit.

Unemployment benefit calculations differ by state. For more information on how New York calculates its benefits, Krinsky points to the New York State Labor Department's FAQ page and pages four and nine of the New York State Department of Labor Unemployment Insurance Handbook.

— Austin Kilham

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