Then, it's important to file for unemployment insurance, and to make sure you have all the bases covered, so you can start a job search.
However, to back up a step, there are ways to be prepared for a layoff - before it happens. That's especially important in a difficult economy, because losing a job can happen very unexpectedly and it can happen regardless of how secure you think your job might be.
How to Prepare for a Layoff
Preparing for a Layoff
When a company is struggling financially its employees could face a layoff. Preparing for a layoff may shorten the period of time you will be unemployed. Here are steps you can take to help keep a layoff from hitting you too hard from About.com Guide to Career Planning, Dawn Rosenberg McKay.
How to Prepare for Unemployment While Employed
You can prepare for unemployment while still employed. In fact, there is no better time to prepare for unemployment than while you're still employed. Here's how from About.com Human Resources Guide Susan Heathfield.
Layoff Warning Signs
In the sinking economy few employees are safe. Here are a few signals that layoffs are looming in your company from About.com Guide to Legal Careers, Sally Kane.
How to Know and What to Do if an Employment Termination Looms
There are signs and signals to watch for when a layoff is imminent. Don't let a layoff catch you unawares. From contacting your professional network to planning how to negotiate your severance package and tidying up your company-owned computer, this is what you need to know and do if a layoff seems imminent. From About.com Guide to Human Resources, Susan Heathfield.
10 Ways to Keep Your Job if Layoffs are Imminent
A record number of legal jobs have vanished in the current economic downturn. Here are ten ways you can protect your job in the face of pending layoffs from About.com Guide to Legal Careers, Sally Kane.
When You Have Been Laid-Off
When you have lost your job, it's important to check on compensation due, benefits, references, and unemployment. Review this checklist to make sure that everything is covered, then focus on your job search.
How to Deal With Sudden Unemployment
If you just became unemployed, you are probably dealing with a lot of different feelings right now, one of them being fear. Unemployment makes you wonder how you are going to make ends meet, what you will do if you become ill and what you are going to do next. Find out how to answer all these questions and perhaps ease your fear from About.com Guide to Career Planning, Dawn Rosenberg McKay.
How to Survive Layoffs
Being prepared to survive layoffs, force reductions and restructurings is vital in the financial services industry, which has highly cyclical levels of employment. Additionally, mergers and consolidation also are exerting downward pressure on headcount in the field. From Mark Kolakowski, About.com Guide to Financial Careers.
How to File for Unemployment
If you have been laid-off from your job you may be able to file for unemployment online without visiting an unemployment office. You should file a claim as soon as you receive lay-off notification. Here's information on eligibility requirements, disqualifications, where to file, how to file, benefits, rates, and answers to questions on unemployment compensation.
Employee Benefits After You Lose Your Job
Find out about the employment related benefits that you may be eligible for when you resign, get fired, or get laid-off from your job. Here's information on unemployment, severance packages, giving notice, health insurance, retirement plans, workers compensation, disability, references and more resources for people who have lost their job.
What Not to Do When You Lose Your Job
Five Things Not to Do When You Leave Your Job
Leaving a job is often upsetting, whether you were fired or finally decided to quit. You may have trouble remembering to do the right thing. Here are five things you should avoid doing from About.com Guide to Career Planning, Dawn Rosenberg McKay.
Maybe you were the only person cut or maybe you were laid off with an entire department. Many of the feelings caused by being laid off are the same regardless of your circumstances. But it's important to take your next steps based on rational thought, not emotions. To start, avoid making these mistakes after being laid off from About.com's Guide to Working Mom's Katherine Lewis.
When Unemployment Runs Out
What to Do When Unemployment Runs Out
What to do when your unemployment checks run out and where unemployed workers can get assistance when they are out or about to run out of benefits.
Share Your Story
Share Your Unemployment Story
Many of those who have shared their unemployment stories felt a little better just because they were able to explain the reality of being unemployed and, in some cases, losing everything. If you'd like, tell us about the job you lost, what it's like being unemployed, and what you might have learned while you're out of work. Also read stories from others who are unemployed.