Applicants or recipients who voluntarily quit employment or reduce work hours are ineligible to participate in the food assistance program subject to the requirements of this rule.
(A) What is considered a voluntary job quit or reduction of work?
(1) A voluntary job quit is a situation in which an individual who is required to register for work, as set forth in rule 5101:4-3-11 of the Administrative Code, has voluntarily quit a job of thirty hours or more a week without a good cause; or when an employee of the federal, state or local government participates in a strike against such government, and is dismissed from his or her job because of participation in the strike.
(2) A reduction of work is a situation in which an individual who is required to register for work, as set forth in rule 5101:4-3-11 of the Administrative Code, has voluntarily reduced their work hours less than thirty hours a week or to a level that results in earning less than the federal minimum wage times thirty hours a week without good cause.
(B) What situations are not considered a voluntary job quit or reduction of work?
Any individual required to register for work that has:
(1) Any reduction in hours mandated by the employer;
(2) Decided to terminate self-employment;
(3) Resigned from employment at the demand of the employer for any reason; or
(4) An individual who quit a job and secures comparable employment. "Comparable" is not strictly defined. County agencies shall not declare a new job incomparable simply because the number of hours or the salary is lower than the job which was quit.
(C) How does the county agency verify a voluntary quit or reduction of work hours?
(1) If the information given by the applicant or recipient is questionable, the county agency shall request verification as defined in rule 5101:4-2-09 of the Administrative Code.
(2) The assistance group has the primary responsibility for providing verification, but if the assistance group reports difficulty obtaining the verification in a timely manner, the county agency shall provide assistance in obtaining the verification.
(3) If the assistance group and county agency are unable to obtain requested verification because the quit or work effort reduction resulted from circumstances that are unverifiable for good reasons, the individual shall not be denied under the voluntary job quit or reduction of work effort provisions. Benefits shall not be delayed beyond the normal processing time limits specified in paragraph (J) of rule 5101:4-2-01 of the Administrative Code.
(D) How is good cause established?
Good cause is defined in paragraphs (C) and (D) of rule 5101:4-3-11.1 of the Administrative Code. In determining if good cause exists the county agency shall also determine if the employment was unsuitable as set forth in paragraph (E) of rule 5101:4-3-11 of the Administrative Code or if there was a domestic violence issue as established in paragraph (F) of rule 5101:4-3-11 of the Administrative Code. The county agency must take into account the facts and circumstances including information submitted by the employer, the assistance group, and or a collateral contact. If good cause is determined, the county agency shall excuse the job quit or reduction in hours and a sanction shall not be imposed.
(E) What happens if the county agency determines a voluntary job quit or reduction of hours has occurred without good cause?
(1) If an applicant has a voluntary job quit or reduction of work hours within sixty days of applying for assistance and without good cause they shall be found ineligible for assistance for the period outlined in paragraph (A) of rule 5101:4-3-11.2 of the Administrative Code.
(2) If a recipient of food assistance has a voluntary job quit or reduction of work hours without good cause they shall be placed on a sanction. The sanctions outlined in paragraph (A) of rule 5101:4-3-11.2 of the Administrative Code shall apply and the recipient shall be notified in accordance with paragraph (B) of rule 5101:4-3-11.2 of the Administrative Code.
(F) How is eligibility reestablished?
Eligibility may be reestablished during a disqualification period and the individual shall, if otherwise eligible, be permitted to resume participation without signing a JFS 03804 "Ohio Works First/Food Assistance Sanction Compliance Agreement" (rev 12/2009) if:
(1) The individual secures new employment which is comparable in salary or hours to the job which was quit. Comparable employment may result in fewer hours or a lower net salary than the job which was quit;
(2) The individual may increase his or her work effort to thirty or more hours per week or earn an amount equal to the federal minimum wage times thirty hours per week; or
(3) The individual becomes exempt from the work registration requirements in paragraph (B) of rule 5101:4-3-11 of the Administrative Code other than paragraph (A)(3) or (A)(8) of rule 5101:4-3-11 of the Administrative Code.
(G) What occurs after the minimum sanction is served if new employment or increased hours have not been achieved by the sanctioned individual?
(1) The individual may begin participation in the program if the individual does not fail or refuse to comply with the requirements of rule 5101:4-3-11.1 of the Administrative Code and is otherwise determined eligible.
(2) The individual may comply by meeting another work requirement in accordance with rule 5101:4-3-11 of the Administrative Code.
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 02/01/2017
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 5101.54
Rule Amplifies: 329.04 , 329.042 , 5101.54
Prior Effective Dates: 6/2/80, 4/1/81, 6/18/81, 1/22/82, 12/31/84 (Emer.), 2/1/85 (Emer.), 4/1/85, 8/16/85 (Emer.), 11/1/85 (Emer.), 1/1/86, 1/2/86 (Emer.), 4/1/86, 7/1/87 (Emer.), 9/28/87, 1/13/88 (Emer.), 3/24/88, 1/1/89 (Emer.), 3/18/89. 10/1/90, 7/1/92, 2/1/97 (Emer.), 4/13/97, 10/1/97 (Emer.), 12/1/97 (Emer.), 1/1/98, 11/1/98, 1/9/03, 12/6/04, 12/31/06