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How to Collect Unemployment Benefits -- Do you Have a Strategy Yet?

Millions have individual unemployment horror stories as well as good ones, to tell about the process of applying to collect unemployment benefits.  

However, a lot of unfavorable stories unfolded after a loss of job when the unemployed person used their own reasoning, as to why they thought they lost a job through no fault of their own.

My unemployment story began in 2006, but unlike other at-will employees, I knew how unemployment insurance benefits worked, because the job  was where I learned to manage my own unemployment claim .. from start to finish.

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Unemployment Blog

  1. Surplus Employee

    Feb 24, 17 02:06 PM

    The company I work for has been laying people off for quite some time now. But now there calling it surplusing. To me, they just making excuses until

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How to Collect Unemployment Benefits if you quit a job with good cause, or get fired without it?

The devil is found in details surrounding the reason you quit a job, or got fired from a job.  When you apply, you're expected to know how to connect that reason to a cause, or issue, found in state unemployment laws, which of course is where a person's right to collect unemployment .. begins to vary.

Do You Have Evidence to Meet, or Rebut the Burden That's Supposed to Be Proven to an Unemployment Administrative Law Agency?

I often wonder if employees would be more interested in how to create evidence specific to the cause, or reason, if they understood more about a burden of proof.

Or if they knew it's the party to end an employment relationship, initially assigned the burden to prove their cause is just, or good.  

So, why do I think unemployed claimants would receive unemployment benefits more often if they understood how to work with the burden that has to be proven to have good cause to quit, or when it's called misconduct to fire an employee?  

The simple answer is employees don't produce relevant evidence capable of weighting their own testimony as being the most credible, given at tribunal appeal hearings.

When someone has quit with potential good cause, or been fired for something other than misconduct, they are often confused emotionally and this takes their focus off the quasi-legal administrative law process that expects they already know, the burden to quit a job with good cause attributable to the employer, or work, or how to rebut a discharge was not due to work related misconduct.

To explain what employees and employers should try to prove .. relevant to a specific burden .. I answered questions about getting unemployment on both those basic separation issues as well as a number of other issues raised for me .. inside someone's question.

Use a  State Unemployment Insurance Benefits Process, to Your Own Advantage

If you've not heard, or read it before, Unemployment insurance laws vary by state.  Yet, all state UI processes share similarities thanks to wide federal guidelines.  

For instance, if you are initially denied benefits it's up to you to take full advantage and advance your claim to the lower level appeal process where you get the chance to verbally argue why an initial denial of unemployment was erroneous, possibly because a determination is only based on the available information.

An example of when claimants err to not take full advantage of the appeal process would be when an employer uses the same appeal right to disagree .. usually because a claimant was allowed to collect unemployment.

So, let's review where in the process ..you and  your claim for benefits might be now.

An unemployment claim section accepts applications for benefits and provides initial adjudication for two separate initial determinations. First, they take care of adjudicating the monetary issues.  

Then comes the non-monetary separation issue which is where fault for a voluntary quit, a discharge for misconduct, and sometimes, even  a lack of work comes into play.

The claim department may have to become involved throughout the remainder of a benefit year to adjudicate any new issues that arise to affect benefits when someone continues to file weekly claims to receive benefits.  Generally these are referred to as conditional eligibility such as whether you're able and available to accept suitable work.

An initial claim determination can be easily objected to when the party aggrieved by it's findings writes even a basic unemployment appeal letter.

Determinations are based upon the "available information".

The lower level unemployment appeal section accepts appeals of claim determinations. This lower level appeal body of a department provides us with the indispensable right to due process to disagree. Many employers wouldn't think of ignoring the right to appeal when benefits are allowed initially.  The hearing, aptly referred to as the full fact finder hearing,  establishes the full record of facts via testimony and evidence, including any relevant info or proof, not made available by an employer, or claimant at the initial claim determination phase.

A tribunal hearing decision has the power to sustain, (affirm) reverse, or modify an initial claim determinations.  A lower level appeal hearing decision is in reality, the last word on allowing, or denying benefits, unless the decision is successfully appealed to an unemployment insurance board of review, usually for good cause related to protecting a party's rights to due process. 

If you're thinking applying for unemployment opens you up to a legal process .. you might be over thinking since quasi-legal only turns legal if a party appeals a board of review's order to an actual court of law that accepts appeals addressing board orders often based on the record established at the first hearing.

Learn more about unemployment appeals and hearings

Questioning The  Argument to Collect, or Deny Unemployment

Sometimes questioning the question leads me to identifying some conditional issue that may of gotten in the way of someone's benefits like....

There's a lot of questions and answers on Unemployment Tips so .. you might want to use a search bar .. and narrow the field .. before asking another question.


Questions and answers about collecting, being what they are .. before someone knows what the burden is, are asked frequently only after someone had been denied unemployment after a a tribunal appeal hearing, which they attended, not knowing how to argue to a state unemployment law on the specific issues listed on the hearing notice.  

If you believe nothing else, believe that objectively identified arguments work better than those inspired while you're still an emotional unemployed wreck.

And that objective arguments pointed at working the law to an advantage .. is much easier for an experienced, professional unemployment hearing representative.

Read More About Professional Unemployment Appeal Services 

More Criteria for How a Burden of Proof is Met .. and Not

There's also a lot of  free unemployment law resources.  Problem is .. State and Federal Governments seem to enjoy playing hide and seek .. or they might of just eliminated the information I have personally bookmarked over the last two decades.  

So, if a link isn't working .. let me know, and even better, don't be shy to let me know where it might of been moved if you find it again .. or if you found a good resource that helped you understand something critical to understanding how unemployment insurance benefits work .. state by state.  

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