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Trouble finding work

Travel   (1,564 Views 9 Comments)
by qcfynest1 qcfynest1 (New) New

501 Profile Views; 6 Posts

I've been a traveler for two years and have worked in AZ, DC, San Antonio and Austin Texas, my last assignment got cancelled a month early due to low census and permanent new hires, which left me with scrabbling to find new employment with such short notice, I've had steady employment in Austin up until this point and it seems the needs have shriveled here. I take the stipend and find my own housing so I have an apartment. I haven't worked in three weeks and my bills are piling up. I've even opted to take jobs in Houston and dallas and I'm waiting for an interview. Has anyone else experienced this problem? I realize that I have to be more flexible and willing to move around to stay employed, I was naive to think I could just continue to get assignments in one city.

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8-ball has 9 years experience as a BSN and specializes in ICU, and IR.

286 Posts; 3,631 Profile Views

If I were you I would venture out from your location and I would look with more than one company as well. check out the FB groups that have postings for travel jobs generally when I am looking for something on there I have multiple post within the hour.

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2 Followers; 1 Article; 5,356 Posts; 45,192 Profile Views

I would expand your search to a wider area, like the entire US. Occasionally events find you without an assignment for longer than anticipated or there is an unexpected termination leading to the same gap in employment. Long term travelers such as yourself should plan for that eventual occurrence in several ways. Obtain housing that you can quit with no more than a month's rent, and generally have saved up enough money to see you through a couple months (or even a year) of not working. Having several agencies onboarded will help minimize gaps and provide multiple options.

If you are really stuck in Austin, a local agency may be able to get you a per diem option, especially at hospitals you have already have experience.

Another option I'd highly recommend is to file for unemployment right now. Eligibility only starts when you file, not when your unemployment first began. You can file online in any state you have worked in the last 18 months. Calling any state office should yield the best option for which state if there is more than one. Variables include how long benefits last (probably not important for you as you will soon be back at work), weekly amounts, and the waiting period before benefits start - almost invariably one or two weeks (you won't receive benefits for that period).

Don't let anyone tell you are are not eligible for benefits. You were involuntarily unemployed through no fault of your own. I've met travelers who file for unemployment the day their assignment ends, even with another one lined up. Seems like a lot of bother to me (but I have savings) but is smart in that when your plans fall though you have some money coming in. Unemployment can be high enough that even one week can help depending on your taxable income.

Speaking of which, here is another reason to be a real traveler, frequently going to another area: stay more than one year in the same general area and that is your new tax home - meaning all those tax free stipends are now taxable as ordinary income. From the sound of your post, you may not even have a tax home and are building a significant tax liability if you are ever audited. If you had a home, you would be headed back right now, right?

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6 Posts; 501 Profile Views

I do have a tax home, I have a home in NC. And I did opt to take an assignment outside of Austin since it looked like there wasn't much to choose from here, I just signed on with two new agencies and been submitted for jobs in Dallas and Houston just waiting to hear back. I've been in Austin a year and had no trouble finding steady travel assignments until now, so it's forcing me to venture outside of Austin. I didn't think travelers were eligible for unemployment.

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2 Followers; 1 Article; 5,356 Posts; 45,192 Profile Views

Again, yes you are eligible for unemployment. No special clauses discriminating against nurse travelers. And yes, if you have been in the Austin area for a year, that is now your tax home.

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8-ball has 9 years experience as a BSN and specializes in ICU, and IR.

286 Posts; 3,631 Profile Views

Ned is correct once you are in an area for 1 year, that state now becomes your tax home regardless of any expenses you incur such as mortgage or rent back in NC.

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2 Followers; 1 Article; 5,356 Posts; 45,192 Profile Views

Small technical correction, it is not the state that is important here, but the "general" area. For example if you work 6 months in San Diego and then San Francisco, your original tax home is still intact. The same general area is defined as commuting distance from a central location. Thus if you are working in San Francisco, and then Oakland, you can easily live in a central location within commuting distance from both. Such a switch of assignments still results in continuing the clock on a shift of tax home.

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Maevish has 9 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in ICU, Postpartum, Onc, PACU.

396 Posts; 9,762 Profile Views

It's the most obnoxious/stressful thing ever. There are jobs "everywhere" including cities I'd love to work in near me, but they either don't seem to look at my file or they have enough nurses (even though there are pages of jobs open and each hospital and I also apply for staff positions).

I'm in the same boat as you. I have to stay in a certain area for family reasons and there are TONS of hospitals in this 45-50 mile radius, but even with all the jobs that are open at each one, I don't have any luck until JUST before my funds run out. I'm out of work for 2-3 months every 3 months, partially because of the hospitals not hiring and partially because my last 2 recruiters have dropped off the face of the earth after the first few weeks of a contract.

I'm applying to at least 20 jobs a day, so I know how you feel. We've just gotta keep it up until we make it lol

-xo

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101 Posts; 3,974 Profile Views

Sometimes staying in one location works out...sometimes it doesn't. I only did travel nursing for a couple years but I did learn a bit about it. If you are in areas that have snowbirds (people who fly south for the winter) such as AZ or FL, you are almost guaranteed 6 months of steady work during their busy seasons. You can be picky in travel nursing and turn jobs down because there are 9,999 other jobs waiting to be filled But if your area is slow, you have to uproot and go where you are needed. Additionally, I wouldn't ever plan on working in one general location for more than 11 months because you lose those tax benefits after being there for a year.

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