Author Topic: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?  (Read 23966 times)

diymark

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 17
Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« on: September 05, 2014, 11:24:14 AM »
Here is the situation....I've crossed the finish line at my job after 31 years. I am now eligible for my pension. I've been a good worker for the company. Meeting deadlines, keeping projects within budget, creating good product, and always trying to be courteous to my coworkers. But I would like to get laid off rather than outright quitting for a couple of reasons. First severance pay. Typically my company has paid a week salary for each year worked for those being involuntarily laid off. Second is unemployment eligibility. My pension takes 60-90 days to kick in once employment is ended, it would be nice to have unemployment insurance pay during that interim. I've never got direct government assistance in my life...would feel nice to finally get something back from the Gov.
So how do I execute a lay off? I've read a few things on the web about doing a poor job to get laid off, but it feels slimy to me. Is there a better way? I hate to leave thousands of dollars on the table. Anybody else been successful at this conundrum?

Gone Fishing

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2754
  • So Close went fishing on April 1, 2016
    • Journal
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2014, 11:47:44 AM »
Yep, poor performance seems to be a common method that I am not to fond of either.  I might need my reputation some day! 

Is there a poor performing department that looks like it might get the axe?  Could you somehow be reassigned to it? Is your company even currently laying people off? 

A blogger named Financial Samuri has a not-free book on how he did it, maybe some others have read it.   

I understand a package+benefits would be a nice bit of icing on the cake before retirement, (we just had a lady get 60 weeks pay due to underperformance!) but engineering your layoff comes with risk, and when it comes down to it is a bit dishonest too, almost like insurance fraud (on the gov side).  What the company does is their own business, but it is a long shot and may involve you hanging around for another 2-3-4 years of mooching before they actually do something about it and if you are anything like you say you are, these would be the most boring unproductive years that will ultimately suck some of the energy out of your retirement.   

Hand in your resignation and walk out the door with pride!

boarder42

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7849
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2014, 11:50:24 AM »
Yeah there are a lot of morally wrong things with what you're doing here.  just resign the normal way and move on with your life

Angie55

  • Guest
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2014, 12:21:23 PM »
Your plan is pretty shady way to get some extra money. I would be happy you have a pension, plan for the 60-90 days without income, and be done with it.

Most employments are at-will. If you perform poorly on purpose you won't get laid off you will get fired. Generally, as long as they documented poor performance they do not have to pay you unemployment at all. It all depends on your company though and yours may have set a different precedent. Layoffs usually are done in groups due to budget downsizing or loss of contracts. I never thought about a layoff as a singular person. In this way, if you really want to go this route look for the poor performing or useless department and try to transfer into there.

Additionally, some states require that you fill in detailed information if you are receiving unemployment to ensure you are looking for a job. I had to fill out the specifics of (3) job applications every week with position, company, location, and how I applied. So if you do receive unemployment this would be fraud if you don't intend to work. Of course you would still probably get away with it but its all up to your comfort level.



Cromacster

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1696
  • Location: Minnesnowta
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2014, 12:23:26 PM »
Meh, be a self respecting adult and don't take handouts you don't need.  These systems are put in place for people who need them, but yes they do get abused.

Edit: And if you are in the US it's not the government who pays it, it will typically be the company you work..unless you work for the government.  Being that way they are much less likely to lay you off.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 12:25:11 PM by Cromacster »

Another Reader

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5078
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2014, 12:29:06 PM »
You can volunteer to be one of the ones laid off in the next round and negotiate your severance terms.  By volunteering, you are saving someone else's job.  Sam over at Financial Samurai wrote a number of blog posts and an e-book about the process.

http://www.financialsamurai.com/

mulescent

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 114
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2014, 12:30:59 PM »
I would strongly advise taking the high road:

-you don't need unemployment insurance and you shouldn't take it even if you are able. 

-an honest conversation with your supervisor is the best way to go in terms of quitting.  it may be that they are already downsizing or would offer you a severance package.  something like "i am considering retiring in the not-too-distant future; would i be eligible for severance or can you offer any incentives to do it now rather than in a bit," could precipitate extra cash.  if not, the worst thing is you walk away with your head held high.

surfhb

  • Guest
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2014, 12:34:04 PM »
Seriously?    Were talking about a minuscule amount of money here.   Lol!

dude

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2368
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2014, 12:39:16 PM »
Why not just ask the company for a pink slip?  It costs them nothing, as they have been paying into the unemployment insurance fund for you for years.  If you have been a good, loyal employee, go to them and tell them you need the unemployment check as a bridge to your first pension check and ask them if they can help you out by laying you off.  It beats sabotaging the company that has provided you with a pension benefit by performing poorly and hurting their bottom line.  No harm in asking (other than it would likely foreclose your less honorable option).

former player

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4593
  • Location: Avalon
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2014, 01:40:04 PM »
I strongly suspect that my name got a tick on the voluntary redundancy list because in my spare time I had been for many years an elected (unpaid) Trades Union official who patiently, carefully and to reasonably good effect for my members pointed out the many and varied follies and failings of our Human Resources department.  Who just happened to be the people in charge of the voluntary redundancy exercise.

nawhite

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1060
  • Location: An RV somewhere in the West
    • The Reckless Choice
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2014, 02:01:42 PM »
I'm not crazy about scamming unemployment, partially from the dishonesty standpoint and partially from the "its work to fake apply for 3 jobs a week and you're retired now so don't do work you don't want to do."

Totally on board with getting laid off for a severance package. Summary from the Financial Samurai stuff:

1. If layoffs are a possibility at your office, let your boss know you would welcome taking one (if they fire you for this, you can take them to court and win a severance package).
2. Do all of your work really fast and keep telling your boss you have nothing to do.
3. Ask for a Sabatical.
4. Don't do it in the 4th quarter as bonuses come out in the 4th quarter.
5. Know what your employer is legally mandated to provide for you. That is their negotiating floor, not nothing.
6. Dont forget about health insurance. Most employers will pay for COBRA for 6 months for you after you are laid off.
7. Talk to HR. Flat out ask, "what is the company's severance package?" Sometimes it is based off of review performance, sometimes not.

etc. Honestly, in your position I'd probably buy the book.

Cassie

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5739
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2014, 02:18:11 PM »
Do the right & honest thing & just retire. To do anything else is just like stealing.   That's what I did & yes I too had to wait for my pension to kick in.  No big deal since you have the $.

brizna

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 38
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2014, 04:08:32 PM »
I don't think the right thing is to just retire. It's not stealing to ask to be let go and/or employ other strategies to get a severance. I would actually argue that the company has been stealing from *him* by exploiting his labor at a profit for years.

I mean, a lot of it depends on your company. If you don't like how it's run, or think it doesn't treat employees fairly, then fuck them, and take them for all they've got.

Personally, I did manage to get myself let go once. I asked. They said no. I told them fine, but I'd be doing the bare minimum to not give cause to fire me while letting everyone else in the group know how I felt about working there. I was the poison employee and proud of it. It took a year, but ultimately I was successful and got paid out. There was considerably more money on the table though. Had I quit outright, I would have given up > $400K in severance and unvested payouts. So basically I got paid for a year and then was fully paid out with severance.

Then I bicycled across the country. It was great.

Also: I was in my mid twenties at the time and have since rejoined the workforce. It hasn't affected me at all in terms of finding a new job. In fact, my references are great from that company since my colleagues respected the fact that I had the nads to do what I did (no one was happy).

Edit: Don't do what I did unless you really hate the company and/or your boss, though. You can still be cordial and successful, though maybe not with as high probability. Even with pretty poor performance (as in doing your job, but just badly), they likely won't outright fire you from fear of lawsuit (age discrimination or whatnot)
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 04:18:19 PM by brizna »

Eric

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4061
  • Location: On my bike
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2014, 04:15:39 PM »
I would actually argue that the company has been stealing from *him* by exploiting his labor at a profit for years.

Huh?  Come again?  Are you assuming that he didn't receive any payment in exchange for his labor?  Seems like a strange job.

brizna

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 38
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2014, 04:19:38 PM »
I would actually argue that the company has been stealing from *him* by exploiting his labor at a profit for years.

Huh?  Come again?  Are you assuming that he didn't receive any payment in exchange for his labor?  Seems like a strange job.

Huh? Where did I say that? Seems like a strange conclusion.

Cassie

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5739
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2014, 04:24:57 PM »
It sounds like you were taking the company hostage & proud of it.   It is one thing to get severance when a company is really laying off but to exploit this is terrible.

Gen Y Finance Journey

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 209
  • Location: CA
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2014, 04:28:47 PM »
I'm in the "engineering your layoff is dishonest" camp, but it can't hurt to let your boss know that if there are any plans for layoffs, you would volunteer yourself.

Eric

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4061
  • Location: On my bike
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2014, 04:28:57 PM »
I would actually argue that the company has been stealing from *him* by exploiting his labor at a profit for years.

Huh?  Come again?  Are you assuming that he didn't receive any payment in exchange for his labor?  Seems like a strange job.

Huh? Where did I say that? Seems like a strange conclusion.

It was based on your statement that the company was stealing from him, quoted above.  The only way I could picture that was if he was working for no pay. Otherwise, assuming he did receive a paycheck, I would call it an agreed upon exchange of money for labor.  Therefore, I'm having trouble seeing where the theft or exploitation is involved. 

Plus, you make it sound like working for a company that uses your labor to turn a profit is a bad thing.  If you prefer to have a paycheck as opposed to not, you better hope that your employer is profitable.   
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 04:37:02 PM by Eric »

SummerLovin

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 63
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2014, 04:29:22 PM »
I don't know how layoffs work in other places, but where I work we don't usually hire turds, but on the occasion that we do, we fire them, we don't give them money to leave.
There is such a thing as "voluntary layoff", where you would get a severance, but not the unemployment. (which you wouldn't need.) Most layoffs happen in areas where particular jobs are excess, due to consolidations and such. You can transfer to a dept that is merging or restructuring, which increases the likelihood that you would be cut. It would probably require you to stick around longer than you anticipated. Certainly ask about packages available besides the standard retirement.
I don't think you should scam for unemployment insurance if your goal is to be retired, not actually seeking employment.
Plus, Karma is a bitch.

NoraLenderbee

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1255
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2014, 04:29:47 PM »
I've been a manager and here's some thoughts:
--A layoff means eliminating positions, i.e., the jobs go away. The company doesn't allow you to replace someone who has been laid off until conditions improve (which may be never). I would never lay someone off as a favor because I wouldn't be able to replace them.
--If a layoff comes, and an employee was leaving anyway, we are *sometimes* allowed to count that person as one of the laid-off positions. It depends on the company.
--The employer has to pay for part of your unemployment, so they have a financial interest in having you quit rather than laying you off or firing you for poor performance.

Cap_Scarlet

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 292
    • EarlyRetireFree
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #20 on: September 05, 2014, 04:51:22 PM »
Here is the situation....I've crossed the finish line at my job after 31 years. I am now eligible for my pension. I've been a good worker for the company. Meeting deadlines, keeping projects within budget, creating good product, and always trying to be courteous to my coworkers. But I would like to get laid off rather than outright quitting for a couple of reasons. First severance pay. Typically my company has paid a week salary for each year worked for those being involuntarily laid off. Second is unemployment eligibility. My pension takes 60-90 days to kick in once employment is ended, it would be nice to have unemployment insurance pay during that interim. I've never got direct government assistance in my life...would feel nice to finally get something back from the Gov.
So how do I execute a lay off? I've read a few things on the web about doing a poor job to get laid off, but it feels slimy to me. Is there a better way? I hate to leave thousands of dollars on the table. Anybody else been successful at this conundrum?

Good on you.

Have a read of this:

http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-laid-off-a-step-by-step-guide

Should give you some ideas.

If all else fails - go and see your doctor and tell him you are burnt out - get him to write you a sick note.

As for all the "holier than thou" responders - are you really saying you never threw a sickie to get a day off?  If you can really answer no then congratulations the gates to heaven are open for you.

Cassie

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5739
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2014, 05:06:32 PM »
I think calling in sick when you really just need a mental health day is very different then committing fraud just to get some extra $.  Unemployment is for people that are losing their jobs thru no fault of their own, are looking for another job and usually they really need it.   None of this is the case with OP.  For the people that do this I hope the Karma bus runs them over. 

brizna

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 38
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2014, 06:06:14 PM »
It was based on your statement that the company was stealing from him, quoted above.  The only way I could picture that was if he was working for no pay. Otherwise, assuming he did receive a paycheck, I would call it an agreed upon exchange of money for labor.  Therefore, I'm having trouble seeing where the theft or exploitation is involved.

There is no possible way I would have thought he wasn't getting paid. You were being obtuse.

Quote
Plus, you make it sound like working for a company that uses your labor to turn a profit is a bad thing.  If you prefer to have a paycheck as opposed to not, you better hope that your employer is profitable.   

Yes. My statement was meant to be an indictment of American capitalism in general. The system that owners of capital have built for us is inherently exploitative and unhealthy. If it wasn't, we'd be living in a heavily unionized society that employed fair trade. Wages would keep up with productivity and people wouldn't have to struggle to survive. Trying to use what little leverage people have as employees is not wrong.

When you say it was an agreed upon exchange, I disagree. When your choices are to be exploited by company A or exploited by company B or live a humiliating life on our woefully inadequate welfare state, that's no choice at all.

It sounds like you were taking the company hostage & proud of it.   It is one thing to get severance when a company is really laying off but to exploit this is terrible.

Man. A lot of assumptions here. Who said the company wasn't laying people off? I survived two subsequent rounds after I told my company to piss off. They actually asked people to raise their hands. They just didn't want to pay me. The golden handcuffs went both ways: I couldn't quit and they couldn't lay me off and I exploited that.

Exploiting it isn't terrible in it of itself. You can't remove context. If your company is run by a bunch of sociopaths, I would argue that you have a moral obligation to exploit any leverage you may have. The next big company I worked for was one of the best places in the world to work and I would never have done what I did there because everyone there is/was a decent human being.

Edit: for the record, Cassie, I never collected unemployment even though I'd have been eligible.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2014, 06:26:26 PM by brizna »

chasesfish

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3183
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Texas
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2014, 06:11:38 PM »

I would actually argue that the company has been stealing from *him* by exploiting his labor at a profit for years.

Huh?  Come again?  Are you assuming that he didn't receive any payment in exchange for his labor?  Seems like a strange job.

Huh? Where did I say that? Seems like a strange conclusion.

It was based on your statement that the company was stealing from him, quoted above.  The only way I could picture that was if he was working for no pay. Otherwise, assuming he did receive a paycheck, I would call it an agreed upon exchange of money for labor.  Therefore, I'm having trouble seeing where the theft or exploitation is involved. 

Plus, you make it sound like working for a company that uses your labor to turn a profit is a bad thing.  If you prefer to have a paycheck as opposed to not, you better hope that your employer is profitable.   

I'm going to completely agree with Eric here - an employer and an employee enter into a relationship based on a negotiate amount  Nobody holds a gun to their head forcing either side to continue the relationship if it isn't mutually beneficial.  MMM is about spending less than you make and never feeling enslaved to a job, 

As for the original poster, all he can really do is let the boss know that if a round of layoffs is coming, the OP would be okay,   If the layoff doesn't come, then retire and no harm.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Eric

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4061
  • Location: On my bike
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #24 on: September 05, 2014, 08:02:31 PM »
When you say it was an agreed upon exchange, I disagree. When your choices are to be exploited by company A or exploited by company B or live a humiliating life on our woefully inadequate welfare state, that's no choice at all.

But wait, you forgot option D -- start your own company.  Oh wait, but then if your business grew, and you had to hire an employee or two, you'd automatically become an exploiter of people.  And of course every time you made payroll, you'd have to remind yourself of the evil incarnate that you've allowed yourself to become.  Nevermind, scratch option D.   :)

boarder42

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7849
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #25 on: September 05, 2014, 08:28:02 PM »
Working for money is not an exploitation by the employer. This is a free country if you truly hate your job to the point you feel exploited. Go find another one.  This idea that companies exploit employees for profit needs to drop off this thread. Yes some do. But you aren't being forced to work there. You CAN leave. Its a free market not communist China.

brizna

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 38
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #26 on: September 05, 2014, 08:38:07 PM »
Working for money is not an exploitation by the employer. This is a free country if you truly hate your job to the point you feel exploited. Go find another one.  This idea that companies exploit employees for profit needs to drop off this thread. Yes some do. But you aren't being forced to work there. You CAN leave. Its a free market not communist China.

People are discussing the ethics of engineering your severance, thus it's relevant. I feel it's ethical due to the inherent and exploitative nature of American capitalism and the power imbalance between employer and employee.

And China? What? China is more unfettered capitalism than America... And has been for awhile. Germany or Scandinavia would have been far better choice of telling me where to go.

Oh, and no, I'm not being exploited because I'm high up enough and well paid enough to be one of the owners of capital. So yeah, no need to quit just yet!

Daisy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2089
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #27 on: September 05, 2014, 10:47:23 PM »
Interesting to read about this moral dilemma, considering I am in a similar position.

My company is continually having layoffs every 6 months, so I don't see why it's morally reprehensible to ask your manager to put your name on the list if it's time for you to go. The company has this money set aside for the layoffs. It's the company's way to allow you to move on with your next opportunity and give you time. At my company, someone offering themselves up for a layoff spares another person from getting laid off. It happened the last time we had layoffs. One guy offered his name up in place of another that would have gotten laid off. He already had another job lined up. Another left his department to another internal department, but that move spared his old team from having to lay anyone off because the old group now hit their cost reduction numbers.

My company has "forced" people to consider retiring in their late 40s and 50s and sweetened the deal with a severance package. It seems to be common around these parts...

I see the severance pay as one of the benefits the company offers. After many years of service, it's like a little "thank you for you service" gift to see you off.

I do agree that lowering your performance to engineer a layoff is of questionable morality.

chasesfish

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3183
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Texas
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #28 on: September 06, 2014, 06:21:28 AM »
One other comment on the "morality" of this thread:

I personally wouldn't do this for the government benefit piece, but that's my own belief.

However, if I knew layoffs were in the works or considered AND I was at the point of FI and probably going to tell my boss I was retiring soon, I might have a moral duty to lift my name up to my boss as a candidate.  I wouldn't want to see the manager have an awful conversation with a good employee on layoff and then find out two months later I'm retiring anyways.   If you like the people that you work with, you could avoid causing two people (manager and other laid off person) a lot of anguish while receiving a monetary benefit for something you would do anyways. 

The conversation with the manager may go something like "You know Mrs. X, I've really enjoyed my time here and I know there are a lot of changes going on and reductions coming. I've saved enough where I would be okay if you all decide it was me, and I've always kicked around the idea of trying a different career".


Noodle

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1194
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #29 on: September 06, 2014, 07:17:34 AM »
Unemployment is administered by the government but it's paid for by your (former) employer. Therefore, accepting unemployment is not taking government assistance, except in cases where the govt. has appropriated extra money to extend benefits as in the 2008 crash. I believe all those programs have ended at this point.

If you get the sense that a reduction in force is coming...once you have hit any benchmarks you need to, like getting vested in benefits, I don't think there is anything wrong with letting your manager know that you're thinking about some life changes and would like to be on the list if layoffs are coming. You might actually be doing an act of kindness by a) reducing the load on the manager who has to choose who goes, and b) saving the job of a co-worker who hasn't learned the Mustachian way. Of course, you do run the risk of having the manager say, "Never mind, you can go now" so be prepared, or, conversely, hanging around longer than you like as the company drags out the process.

If the company doesn't seem to be doing layoffs anyway, then I wouldn't try to "engineer" the layoff by acting up because, as other people have mentioned, the company does have the option of just firing your butt and I would not feel right about deliberately making the life of my colleagues more difficult to serve my own ends.

I think you will find that unemployment is not worth the effort. Most states require documentation that you are looking for work with evidence of jobs applied for. Do you really want to spend your retirement time doing that? That also crosses the line into "impacting other people" because some poor HR rep has to screen out your faux application, or someone who genuinely needs the job may not get the attention they need because your application makes the short list and theirs doesn't.

iamadummy

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 93
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #30 on: September 06, 2014, 07:58:58 AM »
wow..sounds a bit shady

Villanelle

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2954
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #31 on: September 06, 2014, 08:30:10 AM »
To get unemployment, you must be actively looking for work.  I'm sure there are easy ways to cheat that, but it's not really a gray area. You'd have to lie and say you were trying to find work. Dishonest, plain and simple.

As for engineering  severance, I think the morality depends on how it is done.  If there are going to be lay offs and you volunteer or hint that you wouldn't mind being the one to go, I don't see anything wrong with that.  If you slack at work or otherwise to to make them want you out, then I'd think a whole lot less of you.

Given that you are probably one of the most expensive people for them to get rid off, I suspect it will be even hard to get chosen to be the guy who gets the pink slip. 

sleepyguy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 671
  • Location: Oakville, Ontario
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #32 on: September 06, 2014, 08:38:44 AM »
Damn, harsh posters here.

I'm meh on this subject matter... the getting unemployment is a bit "grey area" as you don't need the extra cash flow and you're taking away from those other in your region that need it.  But the severance is fine.  I will agree approaching them first and asking to be "next" is the best way to approach.  Heck they'll notice your heart isn't in it anymore and may let you go anyway.

Way i see it CEOs make horrible decisions all the time, get let go and get huge packages.  I can work like shit and get a humble package myself :)

My GF/SO is in the restructuring sector (IE she fires tons of people) and she see first hand how cut throat it is, i have no pity for huge corporations.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2014, 08:41:46 AM by sleepyguy »

C. K.

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 401
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #33 on: September 06, 2014, 08:53:37 AM »
If it's money you're after, consider talking to your employer to make you a consultant who comes in maybe 2 or 3 days per week. It'll feel like retirement; you'll have the money, nothing shady.

Barring that, create a side hustle doing something you like and cultivate it.

dcheesi

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 861
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #34 on: September 06, 2014, 08:57:29 AM »
We had one older woman in the office who did this. She kept working, mostly because her husband expected her to I think, but they didn't really need the money at that point in their lives. She made it known that she would welcome a layoff, and when the next round hit she was out the door.

Of course it depends on your job to some extent. She was in an "overhead" department, and they love to lay off those folks anyway (even when their job duties are really important!). If you're in a position of responsibility, or otherwise less dispensable, it may be harder to convince them to let you go.  If this is your situation, perhaps you could start grooming a successor for your job duties?

medinaj2160

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 143
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #35 on: September 06, 2014, 09:41:43 AM »
Wow what a bunch of ladies....


BPA

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1191
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #36 on: September 06, 2014, 09:47:01 AM »
I would love to report this person to the Employment Insurance authorities.

Holy sense of entitlement of money he or she shouldn't need.

MrsPete

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3519
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #37 on: September 06, 2014, 10:17:29 AM »
I'm with the majority:

If your company is in trouble and is about to lay people off, then it would be perfectly fine to mention to your boss that you may be leaving within the next year or so anyway, and IF layoffs happen, you wouldn't be devastated if you were chosen.  Make it a casual conversation:  You wouldn't be unhappy to be laid off, but you're not really ready to leave, you're not sure exactly when you'll retire.  You'll be helping your boss make a difficult decision, and you'll be saving your fellow workers from the pain of being severed from a job they don't want to leave.  But this is ONLY if your company is in the process of downsizing. 

On the other hand, if your company is not looking to lay people off, then trying to get them to show you the door is definitely dishonest. 

Furthermore, it may well backfire on you.  If you start doing poor work, you're more likely to be fired (meaning, let go for cause) rather than laid off (which means, we like you and value you, but we don't have the work to support your position).  And if you're fired, the company doesn't owe you a dime.  Plus it might affect your pension negatively -- you should investigate your specifics.

Instead of trying to engineer a shameful short-term gain, I suggest you look into what you have coming to you legally:

- When you leave, does your company give you a check for un-used vacation or sick days?  If so, that's some tide-you-over-til-the-pension-begins money. 
- Can you put in your application for your pension now, yet continue working that 2-3 months until your first pension check arrives?  I don't know how other jobs work, but teaching works this way.  You're supposed to file your retirement paperwork 2-3 months before you plan to retire.  You tell the retirement folks, "My last day will be ____", and they tell you, "Your first pension check will appear on the first day of ____ month."  But -- assuming you plan ahead -- you coordinate it with them. 

And I'd ask an obvious question: 

If lack of a paycheck for 2-3 months seems impossible to you, are you financially ready to give up the steady paycheck for a smaller pension check? 

But don't leave a 30-year career, where you've done a good job, in a shameful way.  Don't tarnish your reputation (because people would figure out this move).  Even at the end of your career, it's never wise to burn bridges.  None of us know what'll happen in the future, and leaving on good terms is always wise. 



dividendman

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1128
  • Age: 37
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #38 on: September 06, 2014, 10:43:04 AM »
So, I'm not with the majority. I agree that you shouldn't try to get unemployment if you don't need it, but being laid off for the severance? Go for it.

As everyone rushes to the defense of the company would like to point out that:

I'm in management, and in management, they teach us to "manage people out". What does that mean? Well, it means make the employees life miserable so they quit so the company doesn't have to pay severance or go through the (painful, and legally exposing) process of actually firing someone. This is perfectly legal and happens all the time. You may have heard of Performance Improvement Plans (PIPs), these are just ways to tell the person they better quit.

I believe in doing the best for yourself - most times this means working hard and getting the rewards you deserve for that. But sometimes it means realizing you are in a "position of strength" and using that leverage to force concessions from the other party. There is nothing wrong with that. It's not immoral. I'm sure people here do it all the time with people that quickly need to sell houses or cars or other things.

You're not looking for an "equitable agreement" you're looking to maximize your gains - as you should. This example is no different. I would just ask for a bunch more money frequently, and if they give it, ask for more. Ask for a spot bonus, etc. If they really want you, they'll give it and then you can leave right after the bonus (having satisfied your goal of getting more money). If they don't give you the cash maybe they'll put you on the layoff train.

I don't see anything wrong with any of the actions I've recommended.


Daisy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2089
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #39 on: September 06, 2014, 12:45:51 PM »
So, I'm not with the majority. I agree that you shouldn't try to get unemployment if you don't need it, but being laid off for the severance? Go for it.

I will probably get yelled at for saying this, but here goes...

I don't think cashing in on your unemployment insurance is wrong either. It's an insurance your employer has paid into for this specific situation. If you had a car accident, but had the private funds to pay for the repairs, should you not cash in on the insurance you have been paying? Sure, your employer paid the insurance, but you also did because that money could have been added instead to your other compensation.

Who's to say whether you "need it" or not? That is all subjective.

Same with the ACA subsidies. Are you going to apply for it if you consider yourself FI? That one is actually more of a government "benefit" than unemployment insurance is.

I'd happily take both if that's what our elected leaders have agreed to put into law.

oldtoyota

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3151
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #40 on: September 06, 2014, 12:55:06 PM »
Did DiyMark ever come back and respond to any of these posts? I did not see a post from him but maybe I missed it?

LisaCO

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 18
  • Location: CO
  • Balancing finances, health and life
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #41 on: September 06, 2014, 02:30:46 PM »
Interesting to read about this moral dilemma, considering I am in a similar position.

My company is continually having layoffs every 6 months, so I don't see why it's morally reprehensible to ask your manager to put your name on the list if it's time for you to go. The company has this money set aside for the layoffs. It's the company's way to allow you to move on with your next opportunity and give you time. At my company, someone offering themselves up for a layoff spares another person from getting laid off. It happened the last time we had layoffs. One guy offered his name up in place of another that would have gotten laid off. He already had another job lined up. Another left his department to another internal department, but that move spared his old team from having to lay anyone off because the old group now hit their cost reduction numbers.

My company has "forced" people to consider retiring in their late 40s and 50s and sweetened the deal with a severance package. It seems to be common around these parts...

I see the severance pay as one of the benefits the company offers. After many years of service, it's like a little "thank you for you service" gift to see you off.

I do agree that lowering your performance to engineer a layoff is of questionable morality.

I totally agree with Daisy.  My company operates the same way.  Layoffs are continuous.  I'd tell If I were planning on leaving anyway, I'd tell my manager, assuming her or she was reasonable.  In addition to saving someone else's job, it saves a slot too.  This way the department only loses one person rather than two.  My company only rarely replaces people who leave.  OTOH, I would never do anything performance wise to try and engineer a layoff; that is definitely questionable.

theonethatgotaway

  • Guest
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #42 on: September 06, 2014, 09:58:38 PM »
I guess what this all comes down to are your intentions.

Will your actions align with your values?

It reads as if you feel like you are owed something, it also reads that you feel you can't make ends meet between quiting and pension payment.

do you not have savings to cover 3 months of expenses?



pac_NW

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 155
  • Have the stamina to work on it until it's right
    • Take Next Steps
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #43 on: September 07, 2014, 08:39:51 AM »
diymark - have you been with your current company for 31 years?  If you have, then you have some tenure and leverage.  I would approach this as an upfront conversation with your employer, saying you are preparing to leave the company (I would not say retire) and that you would like to negotiate your exit.  With that kind of tenure, I would hope the company would be more than willing to help you transition to your next thing.  You have likely already prepared for the 60-90 gap and more over, the severance pay would likely be much more than unemployment.  You might consider consulting an employment attorney as well - not a huge investment for a bit of advice on how to handle things with the negotiation of exit.  If the 60-90 day gap is a big issue, then see if you can move to a contractor status if that would not affect the start date of the pension.  Way to go on your next steps - you are prepared for retirement, have a pension, and leaving gracefully puts the icing on the cake.

mm1970

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6863
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #44 on: September 07, 2014, 09:07:04 AM »
Whoa, maybe I'm not reading this right, but I don't see anything shady about this at all.  Maybe because I've been through 5 layoffs (have only personally been laid off once of the five times).

So the first company, I got hit in the third (final) round when the company went bankrupt.  Which means the first 600 people got severance, and the last 350 got nothing.  (that would be me).

I've also gone through two at the current company - note, that poor performing people got fired (no severance), but the layoff people got severance.  One of my former bosses asked to be on the list.

I see nothing wrong with asking to be on the layoff list.  At the first company, when the cuts were being made, one of my friends was pregnant and was NOT on the list but offered to be laid off to save one of the younger guys.  This of course means that your company must be trimming.

As far as collecting unemployment - yes, it is dishonest if you aren't looking for a new job.  I'm a bit "meh" on it if you've never taken it before.  I mean, I've gotten mat leave twice.  You could take unemployment and actually look for a new job - nobody says you have to look for a similar position - maybe you want to do something more fun - start selling surfboards or something.

I've never taken unemployment either; It's something I think about, because of the nature of my company and the layoffs.  I've been looking for a new job, but fact of the matter is - I'm not desperate to work.  So if I got laid off, I'd frankly rather take a year off.  So in that case, I wouldn't be on unemployment.

Sofa King

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 381
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #45 on: September 07, 2014, 02:10:40 PM »


I think you will find that unemployment is not worth the effort. Most states require documentation that you are looking for work with evidence of jobs applied for.

In New York and New Jersey just calling a business and asking if they are hiring is considered sufficient for job search.  All that has to be done is write down name of company and city the business is in and a contact name in case the state want to verify the job search(you can even use the receptionist name). Usually you are not even required to do that but if you are then you need at least 3 places you tried each week. How hard is it to find 3 places a week that say they are not hiring? 10min at the most? if you call a place that says "yes we are hiring" then just hang up and call another that says they are not hiring. 

diymark

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 17
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #46 on: September 08, 2014, 09:07:21 AM »
I'm glad to see that the group shares my ambivalence and Thanks so much for all the thoughtful comment. A bit more information about the situation that has added to the cloud of clear judgement.

I work for a large fortune 500 company. The company is large enough they are always hiring and downsizing in areas. But overall the company has been making reductions over the last three years through voluntary layoffs (severance= 1 week per year of service), involuntary layoffs (same severance) and incentives to get the "old timers" to leave (more on that in a sec). Voluntary layoffs occur during specific periods. I was not old enough to be eligible for pension during these prior periods and leaving before being eligible meant a significant reduction in pension benefits. So I never applied. Ironically, my area is short on work. So after reaching the nominal age I did approach my manager about volunteering. Although they have not said no, they have not granted it either. My manager is worried losing another person will make the group too small for him to remain a manager. So the cat is out of the bag on my intentions.

The company is changing the workforce mix. Like any company they want to be as competitive as possible and one strategy is to reduce the higher paid positions to lower their costs. Coincidentally the higher paid positions are often occupied by people that are older (after having received salary increases year after year). They are walking a thin line with policies to reduce these positions to make sure they are not liable for age discrimination (they have lots of lawyers to make sure the comply with the law). Policy states if a senior person leaves the company the position must be refilled with a lower classification. Annual merit increases are frozen for top classifications. Again these classification are typically held by older employees (20+ years experience). In my case I'm at the top classification and have not seen a salary increase in 4 years. Although not publicly acknowledged (which would be legal suicide) after talking with fellow employees at the water cooler...if you are over 50 years old you have not gotten a salary increase regardless of your classification. Newly hired employees do not have pension benefit, which was instituted about 10 years ago...another cost savings. They also have done a number of other across the board cost savings programs over the last few years; reduced health benefits, eliminated 3 paid holidays, removal of profit sharing bonus, cut 401K matching benefit.

Frankly, I'm not bitter about any of the cultural shifts in the company. This is a business and they are here to make money. All these things are costs and they have a duty to minimize costs and maximize profits (of course the balance is work force morale). But I also act similarly when making decisions. The only caveat as many posters have pointed out is my coworkers. These are relationships I value and I want to make sure my actions do not have impacts on them personally, which means deliberately slacking off is not an option. That said since I know my days are numbered, my heart is not as committed as years past. I won't be working any more uncompensated time to meet project deadlines as in the past. My feeling now is, if it is important for the company to get it done they should pay for it.

The severance, if paid as in the past, would be significant. I would calculate more than $30K after taxes. While that does not make the budget for me it is still a lot of money to not try and capture. The unemployment is not really that important and has been pointed out probably not worth the effort. I would also agree is slimy to go after. My current plan is to vocally put it out there I would like to be laid off and continue to work until year end. January historically is the slowest time for us so I will revisit at that point.

I again look forward to the thoughtful discussion and reflection on both sides.

theadvicist

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1447
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #47 on: September 08, 2014, 09:22:09 AM »

I will probably get yelled at for saying this, but here goes...

I don't think cashing in on your unemployment insurance is wrong either. It's an insurance your employer has paid into for this specific situation.

Is it for this specific situation? This guy can afford to retire, and wants to leave employment. That is not the circumstance I interpret unemployment insurance as being intended for. 

theonethatgotaway

  • Guest
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #48 on: September 08, 2014, 09:42:07 AM »
The severance, if paid as in the past, would be significant. I would calculate more than $30K after taxes. While that does not make the budget for me it is still a lot of money to not try and capture. The unemployment is not really that important and has been pointed out probably not worth the effort. I would also agree is slimy to go after. My current plan is to vocally put it out there I would like to be laid off and continue to work until year end. January historically is the slowest time for us so I will revisit at that point. 


I think asking for what you want is the way to go.

I think if you don't get what you want you should retire and make the 30k doing something you enjoy.

Personally, I guess I just don't understand your need for the 30k severance when you are already set to retire. It's a dime in the bucket so to speak. If you've never had a large sum of money all at once I guess it **looks** appealing compared to say a regular paycheck, but on the scale of things it's just not worth all this, brainpower. I still say it comes down to ethics and values and in that case, it's up to you regardless of our postings about what you should do and how you should do it.

With that, my opinion which you can take or reject is that I think it's fantasy fun and you shouldn't do it.


theonethatgotaway

  • Guest
Re: Time to retire...how do I get laid off?
« Reply #49 on: September 08, 2014, 09:47:39 AM »
Also i think everyone here is missing this important puzzle piece::
large corporations ALREADY know you want to do this. It does hurt their bottom line.
I highly doubt they will agree to it.
Upper management tends to keep your likes around because it's SO expensive to lay them off. This is not unique to your company and I'd go as far as saying it is worse for you at your company (F500)

So the odds of this actually playing through the way you'd hope are slim to none.
« Last Edit: September 08, 2014, 09:49:17 AM by theonethatgotaway »