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Appeal hearing- do I even have a shot?

I quit my job at the end of October 2009. I had been working there since March, but at the end of September a new owner had taken over. Many people quit during the change, and a few people were fired shortly after for various reasons, such as wearing their headset improperly, with no previous warnings.


In my last month at the job, I had been noticing several notices placed around the store, particularly in the break area. These messages in my opinion were very hostile. Two examples are, "If you can't do your job right the first time you won't get a second chance" and "If anybody doesn't like it here, don't let the door hit you on the way out." There were several more, but it has been a while. I had pictures on my cell phone for a couple of months, but a while after I left I figured I wouldn't really need them for anything so I no longer have them.

I ended up quitting from a combination of low weekly hours and stress from school, but also from the hostile environment and a fear I would be the next to be fired. I had been on unemployment already and it was supplementing my income. When I quit I had not realized it was something I needed to report. My benefits ended a month later and I did not think to reapply until April. That is when I found out I had made the mistake in October of not notifying the EDD of my quitting. They had to investigate and speak to both me and my former employer and eventually ruled in my favor that I had good cause to quit and then I started receiving benefits.

Now I find out I am due in court in 2 weeks because my former employer appealed the EDD's decision. I have absolutely no documentation of these signs nor I am in contact with any of my former coworkers. I received a copy of a letter my former employers sent the EDD in their appeal, and their story doesn't match any of the circumstances surrounding my quitting. They state I wanted time off for a wedding but that I was scheduled that day, so I came in just before my shift to say that I was too sick to work, and that I did not bother to find a replacement, so I ended up quitting the following day. I wasn't sick, there was no wedding, and I don't even recall being scheduled the day before I quit.

I apologize for the lengthy story but I am completely at a loss as to what to do. Looking back of course I wish I had documented. But now it's too late. Do I just go in and explain my side the same way I did with the EDD phone interview? If I lose, do I prepare myself to not only pay back the money I received on my previous claim, but the money I have been receiving since April?



Hi,

Yes, Yes and you prepare to pay back the benefits you received from the date you quit .. if you lose.

In the absence of documentation .. it is always he said/she said or any combination of that term.

What it means is that the judge will have to render a decision based on their perception of who is telling the truth .. or as written in decisions .. the party that is more "credible" or "persuasive".

Too bad about the pictures.

Given exactly what you have told me .. I assume you have a shot, after all, I'm surprised you received benefits after the phone interview .. because it sounds like a quit in anticipation of discharge .. which was unsupported by any documentation or proof .. which leads me to believe you are "verbally persuasive".

So, did you get the claim department file? You know anything at all the employer submitted and the claims adjudicator notes?

You can also go to the appeal office prior to the date of the hearing and get a copy of the file as soon as the claims department transfers it.

And you do realize that if it is an in person hearing .. document may be submitted at the time of the hearing .. if something catches you off guard that you are not prepared for .. put a request for continuance on the record.

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Jun 25, 2010
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what I have
by: Anonymous

Yes, my main reason for quitting was that there was a hostile environment which was very stressful for me to be in, and I had seen coworkers fired over frivolous reasons that the combination got me thinking it would be the same fate for me. I decided to finish out my semester at school and look for a new job after that seeing as how I wasn't working very many hours anyway.

The only thing I have that the employer submitted was a copy of the letter they sent in their appeal to the EDD. Is more information supposed to be available to me? If so, can I go to the court before my date comes and look then, or do I contact the EDD?



Yes, you should be able to get a copy of the state file as soon as it is transferred from the department to the appeal section .. just go to the hearing location where your hearing will be taking place.

And of course you can always view what the state has prepared entitled How To Prepare For Your Hearing.

Aug 19, 2010
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halapiomele@yahoo.com
by: Anonymous

I have been denied benefit because of untrue reason for why i left my job,and i am very sad by it.i am unemployed and pregnant at the moment with ni income at all.and i am waiting for my appeal date,it may never come.but i am wondering if anybody reading this could help me with what i should do about this.

Oct 27, 2010
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15 Days to file Appeal
by: Jon

After speaking with my management team about my current performance / sales results, etc. And my inability to meet or exceed the sales goals by June 12th, 2010 I offer my resignation; they agree to accept my resignation, and offer a severance. Very positive and wonderful relationship / discussion.

Three months later, I decided to file for unemployment. I was denied based on a reasoning of a future pay reduction. And the facts showed that this change did not occur. Therefore, my reason for leaving was considered to be personal and not for good work connected reason.

I appealed the decision and offered the error by the ?phone? interviewer as to her interpretation of the reasons. And, the original application as submitted by me ?contained? the work connected reasons that were not of personal nature. Rather, work connected only.

While the employer did agree with the discussion being held regarding my pay reduction, no reasonable alternative exist to avoid the resignation. I was taken aback by the determination and reasoning.

On 10/22, I held my telephone Hearing. Long story short, I was denied again. What I found of interest during the interview were the line of questions (few of them) centered on the validity of the pay reduction. And did I believe the program and execution would transpire in the future.

Very little questions around the work connected issues. More so, around what I thought contributed to my performance being less than acceptable. For example, I lost a major account with predictable run rate of revenue. That in the past led me to meet or exceed my quota attainment.

In short, I was denied for one major reason: Somehow, the hearing officer took from the interview ? both I and the employer agreed my job was not in immediate danger. While this is not true, (my job was immediate danger) ? it underscores the conflicting ?reasoning? by the initial interviewer ? one cannot quit / resign based on ?future? action that And now the latest denial ? no reasonable alternative exist ? to leave ? but if one did ? the very same action that would occur ? is now consider not imminent.

I plan to file my appeal with the Labor Board of Review ? in Person. I think all of the evidence is in front of them, including procedural errors regarding their application and interpretation of the standard: More likely than not, good work connected cause exist.

My question, should I involve Attorney to reverse the decision in my favor?

Oct 28, 2010
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You started out behind the eight ball
by: Chris - Unemployment-tips

Hi Jon,

Yes, I would think that if you have any hope at all of getting a reversal based on the reasoning that you quit in anticipation of a wage reduction or termination for poor performance .. that had not occurred yet, which in fact, sort of does make it a personal choice .. you would need a very skilled employment attorney to prove the employer left you with no alternatives .. therefore work related.

It can't be a quit with good cause related to a change in the conditions of employment until the change has been made by the employer. A reduction of wage is connected to the work, but if fired for poor performance, the burden becomes the employers for being the "moving party". Unemployment 101.

This is why I contend the time to get an attorney involved is before the end of a job .. not after you've already made the move to resign, especially, if the "poor performance issues" are being contrived. A lawyer might have been able to assist you in working out the details of a quit in lieu of discharge .. which is adjudicated as a discharge, but saves the old resume.

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