New Hampshire Mom Moves Family to Florida for a Job That Disappears When They Arrive

Heartbreaking 53

moving houseA big story out of Florida is putting a rather chilling twist on the unemployment crisis. Erinn Alberts actually had a job with Digital Domain ... or at least, she thought she did. That is until she and her husband sold their furniture, packed their kids in the car, and drove all the way from their home in New Hampshire to Florida, where she was greeted with the news that the company behind Titanic and The Transformers was filing for bankruptcy.

The job Erinn had been promised was cut in the process, along with about 280 positions at Digital Domain's offices in Port St. Lucie, Florida. Now she's out of a job, 30 hours from home, and she and her husband have to try to figure out how to feed their three kids.

It's the kind of story that's so terrifying because it could happen to any of us, to anyone who follows the "rules" when it comes to job hunting. You don't just up and move until you have a plan, but they did. Erinn had a job, what seemed like a good job.

Both of the Alberts had worked for major media companies like MTV and Universal Pictures. The job as a production accountant with Digital Domain seemed to fit right in. The production company was going to pay her $46,000 a year. They even had a specialist assisting the family in finding temporary housing. Moving for a job, even moving a long distance like the Alberts, is not uncommon in this economy. You take a job where you can find it.

I feel for the Alberts because it seems they're another family victimized by a system that gives corporations the power to put profits ahead of people.

Digital Domain has clearly been having trouble. It listed debts of $214.9 million on its bankruptcy statement. And yet, they were hiring? They allowed their human relations department to extend the offer of relocation assistance to a woman, bringing not just her but a husband and three kids all the way from New Hampshire? That's callous and cruel, inexcusably so.

It never should have gotten this far. No company in that position should be hiring, and no potential employee should have to put themselves in such a risky position.

I'm sure the people at the top will be fine, of course. They always are. Digital Domain was able to sell its production business to Searchlight Capital Partners for $15 million, so the big guys will make out just fine. It's people like Erinn Alberts, her husband Aaron, and their three kids who are left to scramble because a company played around with people's lives.

If you can help them with a job lead, Aaron is sharing his email:

What do you think of companies that hire people only to fire them because they can't keep the doors open? Should that be illegal?


Image via Nathan O'Nions/Flickr

corporations, economy


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E Net Arch

It would appear that a new moving agreement is needed for future job prospects. They should pay up front a fee to help the move, and have additional money set aside should the company cease to exist within the first 90 days.

Marika Weber

This is no joke. I a friend of mine's husband moved his family from New York to Florida to work for Digital Domain about a year ago and last Friday he walked in and was told he no longer had a job. No warning, no severence pay, no nothing.

I wish I could help the Alberts right now but I live in Texas and its tough her.

I will keep them in my thoughts and prayers for now. If you would, keep us in the loop on the Alberts. Their story is not new but its still heartbreaking.

Nick Elias

Sooo...the moral of this story is that if I'm offered a job that I will have to relocate to another region of the country for, I will have a contract worked up so that if the company is a "pump and dump" as someone called it, They will compensate me with enough money to take care of my family and/or get back home and buy all my belongings back. I have learned a valuable lesson here.

wamom223 wamom223

Nick makes a great point people.  There are ways to protect yourself without changing the law.  I also didn't see the link a commenter put on the first page.  There are a lot of people to blame in this and the state government is one of them.  A simple google search of John Textor (the chief executive) would have alerted the Alberts that this guy has done this in the past.  Also the state gave this company an incentive to bring job growth to their state so they shouldn't have been hiring out of state anyway.  Knowing what I know now I will say this company is one of the dirty ones, but I still think the Alberts have responsibility in this.  Moving your family is a huge decision and responsibility and should not be something you do unless you have a nest egg to protect you.  $200 dollars is not enough to ensure your family will be okay.

nonmember avatar Christine

This is horrible I just recently moved to that area for my hubby's job. Im going to give the email to him maybe he can help them in some way since he works for local tv station

DixiH... DixiHoneysuckle

I really do sympathize with this family, BUT giving out your email address to try to find work is not very safe thing to do. I mean think about it for a second. Some creep reads this, contacts them, offers an amazing "job opportunity", gets them to trust him enough to get into their lives and voila it's another tragedy waiting to happen.


Jenny... JennyG0929

Hubby had the "pleasure" of meeting one of the executives a few months ago. Bragging about their new cars and mansion they just bought and were remodeling. What these people did is a straight out crime and it is fucked up on every level. Nothing has been said about the kids who are attending the school, I am sure many took out loans. Where are they supposed to go?

Joan Neville Buffa

Companies have become cruel and callous toward hiring people.  They say how wonderful you are and ask you to come in for a second interview only to then ignore you and never tell you whether or not you've been hired.  OK, so you email them or call them and ask and the pat answer is we hired someone more qualified.  They will lead you on and make you excited for a day or two and then wham.  There are so many people out of work that they have the pick of the litter but this is no excuse for rudeness or callousness.  This family was led to believe that the wife was getting a good job and didn't have the decency to inform her that she did not.  It's awful out there.

nonmember avatar kevobx

*Luke 21:16 And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death.

Jenny Fielder


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