Can nurses collect unemployment?

  1. 0
    Hello all,

    I am a nurse who was working in a LTC facility in NJ for 11 months. This was my FIRST clinical nursing job. I was fired for not charting that I did not remove a lidoderm patch and the nurse who came on after me saved the patch and turned it in to the DON.

    I have received a few write up's in my (almost) year at this facility. It was explained that it was to be expected for a new nurse to make errors and that I was being educated. I never endangered a patient, missed signatures in the MAR, forgetting to remove a patch, etc.

    Will unemployment deny my claim considering it MISCONDUCT? I never willfully disregarded policies are intended any harm. I was never late, never called out sick and only used 2 personal days while I was working there

    Any advice please?

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  2. 13 Comments...

  3. 0
    Just to add, more importantly....will I ever be able to obtain another position? How do I explain my termination when applying at a new facility. With nursing is it one strike and your out??
  4. 2
    Generally speaking, unemployment benefits are only available to those who were fired without cause. Like in a layoff or downsizing situation. If you were fired with cause, your employer can dispute your unemployment claim. File and see what happens.
    GrnTea and sallyrnrrt like this.
  5. 2
    I agree. File and see what happens. I would say that you will need to be patient because it is almost a certainty that your employer will fight it and may shade the truth to have you be seen in the worst possible light,

    Start studyying your state UI website. Knowledge is power, especially at your appeal hearing.

    I'd also start a chronology of your experiences. Make it fact-based. That will help you rebut any creative recounting of events they try to offer. Best wishes!
    GrnTea and sallyrnrrt like this.
  6. 2
    On the surface you will not be eligible for unemployment unless you go back to work for at least 6 weeks. Those terminated for cause are ineligible for unemployment in NJ. You can read the qualifications on the NJ Dept of labor website.

    As far as future employment do some self reflection to see where your areas of weakness are and where you can improve moving forward. If you have a plan of action for self-improvement that can only help you as you seek other employment opportunities.
    GrnTea and sallyrnrrt like this.
  7. 1
    In my state, after they receive the application, there is usually a phone interview where you give your side of the story and answer their questions. They talk to the employer, and make a determination. Either side can appeal the decision if they don't like it. Then there will be a hearing. Be prepared for the employer to get their way. They will "embellish" if they feel the need. Basically it is your word against the employer unless there is something black and white. You should strenuously look for work and don't hold your breath, hoping for the unemployment to come through.
    sallyrnrrt likes this.
  8. 3
    You certainly have a future in nursing! Being fired is not uncommon & nurses obtain another position afterwards all of the time.
  9. 1
    Nursing is a profession, so yes you can file unemployment.
    Will you receive unemployment post this termination, likely not. The reason being, the employer followed a progressive disciplinary plan with you, you've been warned, written up, written up, and then terminated. The employer has to show cause & that they did all that could be done to make you successful.
    The reason for termination will be a better indicator of whether you will receive unemployment.

    Are you new to the career world? One strike and you're out of that organization. That doesn't mean you lose a job and you lose your nursing license. Calm down, girly!
    sallyrnrrt likes this.
  10. 4
    i would personally put my energy at getting another job.........

    something I have done, when I had terminated a nurse when I was a DON....a certain nurse
    came back in something like 3-4 days later, remorseful......said she had done some soul searching.... seen how she had errrered
    and had learned from her mistakes, asking me to give her another chance....... I did, and in this nurses case she did try very hard
    to work as right as she could, asked more questions and ask to be shown more things.......she had this "is there any thing else I can do to help" attitude, I had not realized was a great decission for both of us
    Last edit by sallyrnrrt on Feb 12 : Reason: spelling
    GrnTea, Emergent, Here.I.Stand, and 1 other like this.
  11. 1
    Thank you all so much for your replies. Can anyone suggest what an appropriate response would be when on an interview and asked why I am no longer employed by XYZ? I know honesty is the best policy, but I don't want to dig myself into a hole by an inappropriate response. Is there a way I can answer the question truthfully...yet not make them question my abilities as a nurse?

    sallyrnrrt likes this.

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