Unemployment Benefits for a Third Shift Job are Not the Same

Third Shift
Third Shift

Third shift jobs are about to start and I felt compelled to address this special group of unemployed workers.

Thus, if you work the 3rd shift, I hope this short outline helps.

Third Shift: Hourly Wage

First, it takes a special type of person to work the third 3rd shift.

In my experience, most workers in this category seek the 11-7 shift because they want a higher hourly wage.

Third Shift: Independently Motivated

Second, third shift workers are generally independently motivated employees.  I believe this because altering one’s sleep schedule and family life is all about sacrifice.

Third Shift: Unemployment Benefits

Third, unemployment benefits for a 3rd shift job are not the same as a day job because the definition of “suitable employment” applies differently.

Suitable employment is a term used by the unemployment office to help us determine which jobs we are required to apply for during the unemployment process.

The law that typically comes up in Minnesota is statute 268.085.  The rule reads as follows:

Subd. 15.Available for suitable employment defined.

(a) “Available for suitable employment” means an applicant is ready, willing, and able to accept suitable employment. The attachment to the work force must be genuine. An applicant may restrict availability to suitable employment, but there must be no other restrictions, either self-imposed or created by circumstances, temporary or permanent, that prevent accepting suitable employment.

(b) Unless the applicant is in reemployment assistance training, to be considered “available for suitable employment,” a student who has regularly scheduled classes must be willing to discontinue classes to accept suitable employment when:

(1) class attendance restricts the applicant from accepting suitable employment; and

(2) the applicant is unable to change the scheduled class or make other arrangements that excuse the applicant from attending class.

(c) An applicant who is absent from the labor market area for personal reasons, other than to search for work, is not “available for suitable employment.”

As you can tell, the term suitable employment is as clear as mud.  What is suitable employment or not suitable employment is different for every third shift worker.

In other words, employees are sometimes required to prove why seeking a subsequent third shift job is unnecessary going forward.

Because the unemployment office sometimes uses this rule against a worker accustomed to a 3rd shift, I encourage being attentive and using case law to support all claims.