TITLE 28
Labor and Labor Relations

CHAPTER 28-44
Employment Security – Benefits

SECTION 28-44-20


§ 28-44-20 Refusal of suitable work.

(a) For benefit years beginning prior to July 1, 2012, if an otherwise eligible individual fails, without good cause, either to apply for suitable work when notified by the employment office, or to accept suitable work when offered to him or her, he or she shall become ineligible for waiting-period credit or benefits for the week in which that failure occurred and until he or she establishes to the satisfaction of the director that he or she has, subsequent to that failure, had at least eight (8) weeks of work and in each of those eight (8) weeks has had earnings of at least twenty (20) times the minimum hourly wage, as defined in chapter 12, for performing services in employment for one or more employers subject to chapters 42 – 44 of this title. For benefit years beginning on or after July 1, 2012, and prior to July 6, 2014, if an otherwise eligible individual fails, without good cause, either to apply for suitable work when notified by the employment office, or to accept suitable work when offered to him or her, he or she shall become ineligible for waiting-period credit or benefits for the week in which that failure occurred and until he or she establishes to the satisfaction of the director that he or she has, subsequent to that failure, had at least eight (8) weeks of work and in each of those eight (8) weeks has had earnings greater than or equal to his or her weekly benefit rate for performing services in employment for one or more employers subject to chapters 42 – 44 of this title.

For benefit years beginning on or after July 6, 2014, if an otherwise eligible individual fails, without good cause, either to apply for suitable work when notified by the employment office, or to accept suitable work when offered to him or her, he or she shall become ineligible for waiting-period credit or benefits for the week in which that failure occurred and until he or she establishes to the satisfaction of the director that he or she has, subsequent to that failure, had earnings greater than, or equal to, eight (8) times his or her weekly benefit rate for performing services in employment for one or more employers subject to chapters 42 – 44 of this title.

(b) "Suitable work" means any work for which the individual in question is reasonably fitted, that is located within a reasonable distance of his or her residence or last place of work, and is not detrimental to his or her health, safety, or morals. No work shall be deemed suitable, and benefits shall not be denied under chapters 42 – 44 of this title, to any otherwise eligible individual for refusing to accept new work, under any of the following conditions:

(1) If the position offered is vacant due directly to a strike, lockout, or other labor dispute;

(2) If the wages, hours, or other conditions of the work are substantially less favorable to the employee than those prevailing for similar work in the locality;

(3) If, as a condition of being employed, the individual would be required to join a company union or to resign from, or refrain from, joining any bona fide labor organization.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1936, ch. 2333, § 7; P.L. 1937, ch. 2556, § 1; G.L. 1938, ch. 284, § 7; P.L. 1949, ch. 2175, § 1; P.L. 1953, ch. 3206, § 3; G.L. 1956, § 28-44-20; P.L. 1976, ch. 296, § 1; P.L. 1995, ch. 102, § 1; P.L. 1997, ch. 33, § 2; P.L. 2011, ch. 151, art. 4, § 2; P.L. 2014, ch. 179, § 3; P.L. 2014, ch. 203, § 3.)