I have a vest that I bought at a gun show when the first of the Kommiefornia "ban body armor for civilians" stuff came out. The people that come to the gun show here in Vegas are: http://www.bulletproofvestusa.com/
I bought a IIIa Kevlar vest. They also have "Spectrashield" vests which are lighter, because less layers are used. They are a bit more money. My vest was $400 about 3 years ago. They offered a 5 year warranty on the vest, plus free replacement if it takes a shot or even a traffic accident.
Went on a ride along last year and wore an underarmor shirt under the vest and another over it to hold it tight in place. Didn't bother me for the day. Normally it sits flat under the bed.
For your deal, like others have said, perhaps a different line of work is in order. I made $20/hr delivering pizza years ago. I'm sure there are others as well.