Most of us know what it means to be laid off: You’ve been let go from your job, often in a way that is presented as due to no fault of your own, and you are free to both apply for unemployment benefits and pursue new employment possibilities. But what happens when you are furloughed?

Furloughs are becoming much more common as employers react to the economic uncertainties of the coronavirus pandemic, and present unfamiliar questions for those affected. If you’re furloughed, can you file an unemployment claim? Can you look for work? Will you still get health insurance benefits? Do you need to put your life on hold until the furlough lifts?

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