New Jersey Unemployment If You Quit

You can not receive New Jersey unemployment benefits if you quit your job.




In order to be eligible for unemployment benefits in New Jersey, you have to have lost your job through no fault of your own. This means that if you quit your job, you can't get unemployment.

Be sure that you can not quit your job because you didn't like it, or it was too hard, or because it didn't pay enough, or because the hours didn't work for your schedule - and still expect to collect unemployment.

If you are in a hostile work environment, or otherwise feel like you have to quit for a very good reason (such a threat to your health or safety), please take the following advice:

(See this forum thread for the whole story: )

The laws and requirements for unemployment eligibility vary from state to state, but most states do not allow you to collect unemployment benefits if you voluntarily quit your job. If a state does allow you to collect unemployment when you've quit your job - the requirement to do so will be VERY difficult to meet.

In most states, if you are fired for cause you may still be eligible to receive benefits - and the requirements in this case won't be as stringent as if you had quit.

It is my understanding that employers generally do not comment extensively on previous employees, or on the reason that they are not longer at their company, for fear of being sued. Most employers will generally verify employment dates and not comment on the reason you are no longer there, or offer any further details.

If your company fires you though, you can be sure they won't be writing you any recommendation letters.

I know how difficult a hostile work environment can be. I've been there. Still, I would suggest that you do not quit your job. If it is a large corporation, you should talk to someone in the Human Resources department about your situation and the hostile work environment. If you get fired and you have a wrongful termination case, it will be more difficult to appeal your case to the employment commission or more difficult to bring a wrongful termination lawsuit - as you will have willfully quit.

Millions of people are out of a job - so it looks like you'll be diving head first into a very difficult job market, no matter if your fired or quit.

Make them fire you.

Go on about performing your job duties, and do not do anything to provoke them to fire you. If they're going to fire you, they'll do it. If they continue the hostile work environment tactics, or increase them - you should contact the employment commission to see if you have any recourse or protections - as there are federal laws against hostile work environments.


Don't sign anything!

Don't sign any releases, forms, waivers, or anything.

If they present you with paperwork that has to be signed in order to receive a severance or your last check -- Don't sign it!

Take it to a lawyer, law school, smart aunt or uncle, or research and ask about the terms in the document online.

If you do end up signing it - remember that it is a legal document, so understand and agree to everything in it before you sign it. Also, remember that the terms are negotiable, because it is essentially a contract. If they want you to agree to their terms, you have the right to either:

a. Not sign it.
b. Negotiate the terms of the agreement.
c. Sign it.

Examples of ways you can negotiate this legal document, which is often referred to as a 'Separation Agreement':

a. Demand that the agreement state that you are being laid-off, not fired.
b. Demand that the company will not challenge your claim to collect unemployment benefits.

Still Have Questions?

To go back to the New Jersey Unemployment FAQ Page, click here: New Jersey Unemployment FAQ

To go the main New Jersey Unemployment page, click here: New Jersey Unemployment

Maybe We Can Help: 

If you can't find the answer to your question, you can fill out the comment form below and I will answer your question ASAP, or you can ask the The Unemployment Expert or you can post your question in the Unemployment Forum


# Mike 2011-04-05 16:12
I am receiveing a weekly pay check for one year, my company wants to cut my pay in half and put me on commission - will I be able to collect unemployment
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# cathy 2011-04-10 17:42
my roommate moved out and i cannot afford to pay my rent and bills by myself. my hours were cut at my job of 2 1/2 years since thanksgiving 2010. i was supposed to move out of jersey city mid march. i quit my job and packed my stuff, but the date of my move keeps getting pushed back due to problems on my cousins part(i am moving in with him)week by week. i filed for unemployment and was denied because they say i left my job for personal reasons. i have no idea when i will move. no one is willing to hire me part time if i am only working week by week and will quit at any point, but i still have to pay rent,utility bill and to move. what should i do? what are my chances if i appeal?
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# Lisa 2011-08-09 19:51
I have been working for this company for the past 20 years,and was hired as a bookkeeper. After the 1st 5 years, the management found out that I was jack of all trades. (drafting, outside maintennce, etc) I was some what compensated for it but not at the proper pay scale, as drafting is at a higher pay scale then bookkeeper. Also after 8-10 years management (daughters) came in and I was told I would lose my 4th week of vacation, due to I never received my Handbook, which I did, but still lost it ( I was the only one). A new administrative asstiant came in which was paid a larger salary, which I was told not all postions are the same, so I accepted that story. Over the years this asstiant has had several personal issues. Due to these personal issues her lack of work has diminshed and has been given to me to double check all her work since there have been several mistakes. I have not been compenstated for this at all. The administrator talks about her dating storys etc., which the boss loves to hear. I have brought this up to management (daughters to boss) and they stated that, thats the way he is, we can't change him. I come in to work and hear about his sexual comments, day in and day out. He does not acknowlege me most of the time because I guess I don't have any juicy story. This has been very upsetting and depressing, and I have been thinking about contacting a physcian regarding this. I wake up now everyday, despise going to work even though my performance at work has not deminished at all, and have received more work to do. Also there have been other employees exposed to this and they are not please with it at all. The company also has racial issues that are over looked all the time, which has not been fair to other. If I were to quit, would I receive NJ unempolyment benefit?
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# MARTIN SPODEK 2011-08-11 16:40
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# Anthony 2011-10-23 22:43
I was working for my job for about 18months . I applied for another job and got a call offering me the position . I excepted. Went in and met with the interviewer,did my application and was called back for the 2nd interview. I was hired (left my old job) began my training for the new job. I completed my training received a letter from the company that reads "Congratulations " on being selected for the position,with my hours and salary. This signed by two V.P.s from H.R. and the Director of the site. Then after about two weeks of being given the run around trying to get my pay check I am called in and told that I have no job. That I had never been hired and that something came up on my back round check after I told them from day one about everything on my rap sheet and so o well ( what can I do )
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# Chris 2012-12-20 17:47
Ant, what ended up happening I'm in the same situation had my claim interview today now there checking into my employers.
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# Joanna 2011-11-21 22:32
I'm working for a company about 2 years. I need to Quit my job because of the healt problems. Its too much stress in that job, I ca't sleep at nights and I have neurosis. I'm taking a medicine because of that. What I need to present for unemployment office do reicive the unemployment. I can't stay in that job longer. I'm lookin for a new job but I didn't find anything yet. Please help me. This work is bad for my health.
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# Morgan 2011-11-29 12:09
I have been at a job for over a year. A few months ago I hurt my back and have been going periodically to the doctor for it. It turns out I have 2 ruptered discs at l4 and l5. I informed my employer of this and she was fine. I did not want to sue her or file workers comp. Within 3 days of finding out what my diagnosis was she told me to take two days off paid. Then it turned into a week paid and shortly into two weeks. The reason why it turned into two weeks was because she wanted me to sign a paper she wrote saying that i will give up my rights if anything happened to my back at work and she wouldnt cover it. I said no because that is not lega. The next day she revised the letter and changed a paragraph around saying that i am not physically fit and that she still wanted me to give up my rights. I had a doctors note saying i was able to work and she did not want it. I brought these letters to my lawyer and he said they were illegal and that i have a case against her. I dont want to go to court against her I just wanted to work. After explaining this to her she got very hostile and was cursing and yelling at me. She would call me numerous times a day raising her voice and being nasty to me. Finally she wanted my doctors note and me to sign a letter saying I wouldnt sue her if i hurt myself, which my lawyer informed me not to do. I told her that and then once again she started screaming and cursing at me. She later called me saying that I am untrust worthy because I went to a lawyer about this. She then told me I am not allowed on her personal property (which is part of my job site, I manage a horse farm/estate) and can only be on the farms property because her home owners insurance wont cover me. Then she cut my hours down from 42-25 hours a week to 16. Yes thats right only 16 hours a week. She then told me she did it on purpose because of how I went to the lawyer about seeing if her letter was legal or not. I do not think this is fair and I do not feel comfortable working in the environment non the less live off of 16 hours a week. I know quiting is not the best solution but i dont seem to have any other choice. Is there any way i could still file and collect unemployment if i quit due to my circumstances?
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# Jessica 2011-12-05 12:55
What if i am working but my employer is not able to cas my checks?? Can i quit?
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# Cristin 2012-01-06 23:51
I work in a call center and have been there for over 7 years. I am in a supervisory position and recently began going to a trade school in a different industry. Mainly, this is because I am bored with what I am doing and although I work close to 60 hours a week, I am barely above minimum wage in terms of pay. Recently, they changed the schedules in my department - which puts me in direct conflict with my schooling hours. I was taken aside and advised that I had 'a decision to make' about what I wanted to do. Basically, they would like me to quit my position or get a demotion while allowing me to 'tailor' to my hours. I work with a team of five other people - all my lateral peers, and they are unwilling to assist me with my scheduling conflicts, as there is a schedule that would work for me and my schooling. (This because of seniority). I do not want to quit, because I know that in NJ they would not give me unemployment, which brings me to another issue: no job = no money; no money = no apartment, no car, and no schooling. I do not want them to terminate me because of the amount of time I have been at that company. In addition, earlier last year, I had contacted Human Resources due to issues with my upper management and their handling of a situation that occurred between myself and another employee. What recourse do I have, aside from allowing them to terminate me since they are unwilling to assist me with my scheduling conflict? I went to a labor lawyer during the previous issue and I was sorely disappointed, as he was of no assistance and seemed to turn the issues around to the benefit of the company. Thank you for your response.
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# Larry B 2012-01-20 17:55
I was diagnosed with a heart condition in 2009 and I have defibrillator. In Feb of 2011 I took a job that is very physical on four occasions I have received shocks from my defibrillator, the last two were only a week apart. I feel that my health is in jeopardy with this type of work. Would I be eligible for benefits until I found a different line of work.
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# James 2012-01-31 02:16
I just recently had my second child. Neither of which are old enough to be enrolled in public school. At least for free I mean. When I looked into day care it would cost me at least $1300.00 a month for both my kids to attend daycare. I only bring home about $1500 a month from my job. My wife makes more money then me and we can use her benefits which are better if she went back to work full time. She is still on maternity leave and left as a part time nurse. I feel as though it would become stressful not smart to continue working if we can't afford daycare. Wish I knew daycare was soo expensive. Could I receive unemployment benefits if I quit? It's costing me money to work and feel its better if I stay home and raise my family.
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# jimmy 2013-01-12 14:12
im in the same position, me and my wife talked about it and we decided i should leave my job and she would keep hers so i can provide the child care we need to our special needs kids, 6 weeks later the board is still reviewing my case and still says pended, what happened to you?
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# Trina 2012-02-01 10:01
I have been on unemepployement for a year and five months. They stop my unemployment because one of my employers said that i quit but i have been collecting this whole entire time. The employer said i quit in july of 2010 and i claim for unemployment in october of 2010. I left a job due to the fact that i was treated unfairly and my mother got ill and i need to place at a closer location. what should i do Or what will happen? i Found another job right after i quit this job does this help?
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# Pamela 2012-02-07 18:15
Will one of my former employees be able to take a short term position for 4-6 weeks and then reapply for benefits? He collects unemployment currently and is concerned that if he does not work 20 weeks total he will not be able to resume his benefits. He has several years of work weeks in his NJ bank. It would be terrible if he had to refuse work...because he would loose his benefits. Can the system really be set up this way? Pamela
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# sterling 2012-02-20 14:09
i was denied for unemployment because i quit my job, i have been filing the weekly claim. I am still seeking work. will i be able to collect after a six week waiting period, should i continue to file a claim??
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# Omar 2012-02-23 17:57
If an employer told me to walk away if I had a problem wirh the job because he has 750 employees, could I file for unemplyoyment benefits.
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# KARY 2012-03-14 11:49
If i have been accused by my boss to stollen merchandise and police investigation have been open. Can I still apply for unemployment
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# Katie 2012-03-23 13:58
I resigned from jump because I was unable to sign a 12 month contract. i have to leave the area because of an emergency. The company would not offer me a shorter contract. Can I claim unemployment?
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# iceman2711 2012-03-29 13:26
My boss is always cussing about me and my fellow employees. I have been here 10 years, I work 4 10 hour days for this lady plus I work 10 hours a week at my other job. It is a very hostile work environment. I feel my health and safety are at risk. The kitchen here is a safety factor with stuff exposed.
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# Paul 2012-05-20 11:56
My employer cut my hours from 40 to 25 per week. Would I be eligible to collect unemployment for the hours that I am losing??
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# Braden 2012-06-21 00:45
I worked for krafts company for a period of 6 years full time ,I have a part time job as a bartender aprox working 20 hours a week.Krafts company laid me off.This was my full time job.My second job did not want me to increase my hours.I quit my second job to find a better one.I was denied unemployment due to my second job which was a part time.If there is a reason why they denied my whole complete unemploymet?
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# Shelley 2012-07-18 22:24
Hurt my knee at work was out on workmans comp -company doctor cleared me and they are trying to get me hurt again at work, can i quit because i cant do the job physically? I can get a doctor note if needed.
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# Leslie 2012-10-17 15:16
I was hospitalized in two occasions while i was working then i applied for short term disability while i was in the hospital been treated which was approved. Then the doctors didn't exactly know my treatment they were trying to figure out different treatments. Then i resigned on my position because i didnt know how long my treatment was going to last because they didnt have a exact date. Then when things were getting better and I wanted to look for a job again i was informed that i needed intense treatment again. Can i apply for unemployment with this kind of situation?
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# Ellen 2012-10-26 11:10
My job has recently been eliminated due to outsourcing. The company has offered me another position, which I have been doing for 3 weeks now. I am making substantially less money - going from about 40K/year to less than half of that. Would I be able to quit this job and collect unemployment so that I can devote my time to looking for another job. I cannot really survive on the money I am making in this new position. Thank you!
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# Rochelle G. 2012-11-26 08:24
My question is why am I the only american that cannot recieve unemployment? I was disquilified from recieving benifits because of leaving my job for personal reasons. I quilify in every other way. Like making more then the amount to qualify and was at my last job for as long as I was supposed to to quailfy. Now that I'm in the appeal process I was told unemployment is backed up for 6 months. Is there somewhere else to go to file a complaint about this?????? Please someone anyone tell me something other than to go find another job.
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# jimmy 2013-01-12 14:15
what were your personal reasons?
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# Robert 2012-12-20 14:57
Can I still collect unemployment if I quit and moved out of state to care for sick family member but she passed away can I refile for unemployment
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# Julian 2012-12-20 19:37
I had left my job voluntarily to take on a new job , I did not quit my job until my training was completed for my new job. I officially started the new job and two weeks go by and I get laid off. I believe I did the right thing by not quiting until I knew for certain the new job would be secure. This morning I had My claims interview and answered and explained everything truthfully. Will this claim be approved or am I in for a rude awakening. I never claimed before nor did I think I would need to. Input is needed
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# Mildred 2013-01-08 11:28
My employer has is exercising a Voluntary Termination Pay Offer. I am taking it. I will receive 104 weeks pay. Will I be eligible for unemployment benefits?
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# John S 2013-01-17 11:40
I was placed on an Performance Improvement Program (PIP) after five years with the company. The imporovement program runs from January 15-February 15. My supervisor stated the PIP was just a formality and I will be terminated at the end of the PIP period (Feb 15th). I asked them if they could lay me off so I can collect UI and I don't have to wait out the 30 day humiliation. They stated they didn't have the paperwork in order for a layoff but advised me to resign instead. They swore they would not contest the UI if I resigned. What is the likelihood of receiving unemployment benefits if I resign in lieu of being terminated?

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# Mery 2013-01-17 20:57
Hi, I had a baby on July 2012 and I took my 12 weeks (job protected) maternal leave after the birthday. After the 12 weeks, I took vacations days and after my vacations days I took what my employer provides called bonding time leave (unpaid and no job protection) 14 weeks. My question is: if I don't return after this last leave can I collect unemployment.?? thanks
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# Christina 2013-02-18 11:43
If I am hired as an seasonal employee after the season can I collect unemployment?
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# joe 2013-02-21 09:46
I travel to work with my car 45 min each way and lately my car is not cooperating and I have a difficult time to to keep up with my responsibilitie s. I am good worker. The company is giving me a choice: to let me go and never get a job with them or resign and if possible be rehired at latter date when my car trouble is corrected. Company claims that they would not challenger my eligibility to receive unemployment. what should I do?
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# Krista 2013-02-21 12:18
I am due to return to work Monday after having my daughter. However I have MS n was only cleared to return part time. My job informed me they have no part time position for me. So I ask again what do I do? She responds either dint show up for 2 days n you will be terminated or come in and do the part time hours however you will eventually be terminated for non compliance. So my question here is should I write a resignation citing my drs note and the fact that there is nothing part time and I would rather resign for this medical reason and file for unemployment then go in a get fired for one of the reasons she stated. I have all the emails from her including the one saying she can't terminate me until Monday n the other emails telling me no part time and all that stuff.
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# chrissy 2013-04-11 17:37
I started having back problems last august. I have missed alot of time at work because of it. I was cleared to go back to work april 1, but on light duty, i have been out of work for a month w no pay. I have spinal spinosia, rheumatoid arthrotis, 2 herniated discs and 2 bulging discs. I deliver mail and am not physically capable of continuing to do this job, my dr will attest to this. If I quit will I be able to collect unemployment?
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# Esther 2013-04-22 09:29
My brother was unemployed for approx a year and half and started a job on Apr 10. He decided that he did not like the nature of the work, and that he was lied to or mislead regarding when his benefits would start and his ability to work OT. He quit on Friday the 19th. Is he able to go back on unemployment? I told him he can't, but I want to be sure. Thanks!
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# Regina 2013-04-29 15:10
My sister employers have taken away her title as manager and reduced her days working from 5 days a week to two. All this because she is pregnant and is due end of July. She was given two week notice regarding when she will start her new hours and informed that ey hired a new manager. If she quits because she can not support herself or her unborn baby can she file for unemployment?
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# James 2013-06-11 18:20
Moving about 50 miles away from my current job, they are not going to give me a company vehicle to travel with, can I collect unemployment till I find a job closer to my new residence?
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# Luisa 2013-07-15 13:48
I been working 35 hours at week in the same place for about 7 years. I also have an on-call job with approximately 15 hours at week for 4 years. This fall I am planing to go to college full time which requires a lot of time. If I quit my full time job and keep the on-call job, can I apply for unemployment benefits?
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# janet 2013-07-23 07:25
I lost my apt due to a financial problem and had to move 3 hours away from my job. I quit due to this can I still collect unemployment?
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# Maria 2013-09-10 16:08
Unfortunately, I had to quit my position because of childcare issues and wanted to go back to school for my nursing degree. I Offered my availablity from 9am-1pm but, my employer was not able to give me the position & not because they didn't need me there but, solely because he didn't want to keep me part time. I was full time for 4.5 yrs. but have been employed by him for a total of 16 yrs. (full & part-time). Now, is it possible for me to collect unemployment until I find a part time position elsewhere?
Please advise.
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# Elen 2016-07-21 23:01
My question is how much harassment are you expected to take before you has just cause to quit?. I have worked for my employer for a year in 5 months from day one I have been cursed at and berated in front of patients in front of co-workers to the point that even patients apologized to me saying that he should not treat me this way. I have gone through various issues from being accused of being hormonal not doing my hair the right way not wearing makeup to debates on how I practice my religion the most recent was being told that I was nasty person because I was of German descent. Within the last 5 months my checks which was usually given to me at the end of my shift on Friday are now not being made available until 3 or 4 hours after I would leave for the day. I am now being told that that has always been the policy so it was never discussed during my interview over a year ago. There is always an underlying tension which always makes me feel on edge. It is a small office where most people are related there is no HR when I speak to my employer about my feelings I'm told that my opinions do not matter that he is not responsible for how I perceive his actions.
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# Dean Walsh 2017-08-27 16:12
I had to resign from my job because I physically couldn't do it it required a lot of walking and I had a total knee replacement three years ago with bad results . Can I still collect unemployment or some kind of short time disability how do I go about applying
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# Dean Walsh 2017-08-27 16:22
I had to resign from my job. I physically can't do it anymore it required a lot of walking. I had a total knee replacement three years ago with bad years and have been struggling with work ever cents i'm sure there's other jobs out there that I could do
Can I still collect unemployment or some kind of disability and how do I go about applying
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# Ruth Marrero 2017-10-30 20:34
I just recently received a severance package from my company with the understanding that I will not receive that unless I stay until then end of the year & train another person one of my job duties. It is very uncomfortable working at a company knowing that you are not wanted there. Can I just quit & still collect unemployment until I find another job and tell them to keep the severance package?
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