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Practical Money Matters Radio Series

October 15, 2012
Be Prepared for Layoffs

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Find out what steps you can take now to ensure you are covered in the event of a layoff.


Chances are you, or someone you know, has been laid off. If you think your job may be in jeopardy, take these steps to protect yourself financially before you get a pink slip:

Find out what severance benefits your company provides.

Understand how COBRA extended health insurance works.

Cut your living expenses by 20 percent and then save the difference.

Usually, making extra loan payments is a good idea, but if your emergency fund is low, consider making minimum payments and saving the rest for a rainy day.

If you do get laid off, apply for unemployment benefits right away. And don't raid your 401(k) plan to pay bills. You'll get hit with huge taxes and penalties.

Bottom line: Even if your job feels secure, it pays to know your options.

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