The Difference Between a Layoff and Furlough: How to Tell if You're at Risk

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Between the worries of global pandemics and economic recession, many workers are concerned about their jobs. The terms "layoff" and "furlough" have become part of our everyday vocabulary, and many workers are worried about the possibility of either. Our Calabasas employment law attorneys will outline the differences between a layoff and furlough and how to tell if you are at risk for either. We'll also provide some tips on what you can do to protect yourself.

Layoff Vs. Furlough

So, what is the difference between a layoff and a furlough?

A layoff occurs when an employer permanently eliminates a position or position. A layoff is sometimes referred to as a "reduction in force." The employment relationship is permanently severed when an employer lays off an employee. The employee is not returning to work and will not be paid.

A furlough, on the other hand, is a temporary suspension of work. The employer may require the employee to take unpaid leave for a certain period of time. The employment relationship is not permanently severed, and the employee will be able to return to work once the furlough period is over.

How Can You Tell If You're at Risk For a Layoff or Furlough?

A few key indicators will help you determine if you're at risk for a layoff or furlough.

  • The first is whether your position has been eliminated. If your employer has permanently eliminated your position, you risk a layoff.
  • The second indicator is whether your pay has been reduced. If your pay has been reduced, you're likely on a furlough.
  • The third indicator is the length of time your job has been affected. If your job has only been affected for a short period of time, then you're likely on a furlough. However, if your job has been affected for an extended period, you may be at risk of a layoff.
  • The fourth and final indicator is whether you've been asked to sign a new employment contract. If you've been asked to sign a new employment contract, your employer is likely planning to lay you off.

Though these are not sure-fire indicators, they should give you a good idea of whether you're at risk for a layoff or furlough.

What Can You Do to Protect Yourself?

If you're concerned about being laid off or furloughed, you can do a few things to protect yourself.

  • Track any changes in your employment status. This includes any changes in your pay, hours, or job duties.
  • Stay in communication with your employer. Ask your employer directly if you're concerned about being laid off or furloughed.
  • Review your employment contract. If you have an employment contract, review it carefully. Your contract may contain information about layoffs and furloughs.

Additionally, it is recommended to consult with an experienced employment attorney. An attorney can help you understand your rights and provide you with the best course of action.

Contact Gaines & Gaines, APLC Today!

We encourage you to contact our office if you have any questions about layoffs, furloughs, or employment rights. Our seasoned team of employment law attorneys has helped countless workers protect their rights. We're here to help you, too. Schedule a consultation with us today

Contact us today by calling (866) 400-4450 or filling out our website contact form