It depends. In many jurisdictions, workers who lose their job can apply for—and often receive—unemployment benefits coverage for a certain period of time. However, there is usually an exception for workers who engaged in so-called “willful misconduct.” There are also exceptions for those who willingly leave jobs and for those who are principally self-employed (own their own business). Thus, if you are fired from your job due to a typical reduction-in-force or because of a general layoff, you likely can receive unemployment benefit coverage for a period of time. However, if you were fired for stealing employer property, then you are unlikely to receive unemployment benefit coverage.
Many Americans choose to work through their lunch breaks, but the law stipulates that employers cannot require them to do so (iStock).