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Losing Unemployment Compensation

By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - If you are fired, are you automatically entitled to unemployment compensation?

You think your job is boring? Imagine how hard it is to pay attention when you're a US Senator in hearings over whether or not to take military action in the Middle East. Oh yeah, actually in that case you should probably pay attention. Which is why John McCain faced some heat for tweeting about getting caught playing poker on his cell phone during senate hearings on Syria.

But since the fate of the Middle East doesn't rest in your hands, doesn't seem quite so imperative not to spend at least a little time at work playing solitaire or poker or whatever else gets you through the day. Except for one thing. You might not realize that if you get fired, you are not automatically entitled to unemployment compensation. In fact, willful misconduct and breach of a company policy can and do make you ineligible for unemployment.

And, since virtually all offices except the Senate have policies on Internet and cell phone use, you should turn off the angry birds or solitaire or poker, losing unemployment is hard to explain to your constituents.

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