Couldn't find a better category than Finance. Any HR types out there who know whether given a layoff with a package whether you are generally still allowed to freelance (W2) within the same company?  Different department.  Is that generally kosher?

There likely is a ceiling on how much you can earn as a freelancer and still be eligible for unemployment benefits. The intent of unemployment payments is to tide people over after losing a position, not to keep you at your previous pay scale. If you're able to get another paycheck at a certain amount after losing the position, even if it lacks benefits and is "lesser" responsibility, unlikely you'll be eligible for unemployment. Not sure what that ceiling/amount is, your company should be able to advise you, or perhaps someone else can chime in.

If the freelance work is spotty, you can collect unemployment when you are not earning freelance money.

Freelance on a W2, though? I assume you meant a 1099?

I'm not talking about unemployment checks, I'm talking about the package they give you for severance.  

It is up to the company. If they are ok with it then it is not an issue. We were recently paying someone severance even though he was still working 10 hours a week to finish something up. 

"Packages" generally come with some kind of contract and the ability to negotiate - they're offers, not firm deals. I would just negotiate upfront that you'd like to have the right to accept a freelance offer(s) from other areas of the company, without it affecting your severance. At very least you'd want to make sure your severance package doesn't specifically preclude you from future freelance work with the company.

It would be difficult to do two things at once - to try and negotiate a larger severance package while you are seeking freelance gigs within the same company.

If you've already accepted the package, and they haven't specifically stated that freelancing with them isn't possible, seems to be no reason you couldn't move forward with some freelancing.

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