If you've already read some of the Q&As, you may of noticed I'm obsessed with the notion that it's an employee, not an unemployed person, that will find themselves better off in the end, if they understand the basic principles to prove a burden of proof, as it relates to the primary eligibility issue listed on unemployment hearing notices, that often surprise those of you who will be initially awarded the right to collect unemployment benefits.
Knowing what it takes to prove the burden you weren't at fault before you quit a job, or what it might take to rebut facts presented by an employer to prove you were fired for misconduct before you are discharged can give you a certain edge .. in that what you don't know about the burden that must be met at a hearing, can't be used to create an advantage for an employer to use against you .. after they file an appeal to an initial determination based only on the available information.
At a lower level unemployment hearing, the standard of law used to decide fault is a preponderance of the evidence and testimony provided by both you and an employer at a hearing.
Although there are unemployment hearing instructions provided with hearing notices that include information about how to prepare for an unemployment appeal hearing, it's using the rules of procedure for administrative law hearings in your state when presenting your case, relevant to the moving party's burden that I offer referrals to professional and experience unemployment hearing reps.
An initial eligibility claim determination is the second determination issue on a unemployment claim. It comes after the first determination called the monetary award .. which can also be appealed, if you, or your employer disagrees with the numbers related to the base period wages that establishes what the weekly benefit amount would be if you are found "otherwise eligible".
Guilt of misconduct, or fault for causing you to quit your job is initially based upon the available information. You'll just have to take my word for it that the information often made available by you, or your employer will not be sufficient enough for a correct initial finding of facts. Employers know this and they know claimants are often unprepared to win a hearing on merits, therefore appeal with their fingers crossed a claimant won't get a clue .. before the first unemployment hearing.
Given I'm rather attached to my rights and liberties in this country .. it always pained me to see someone who was initially allowed, or denied unemployment benefits .. to lose what I believed was a potentially winnable unemployment appeal hearing .. because they never had the burden of proof in their sights in the first place.
In a nutshell, you need to stick to the facts (not your feelings) that relate to the burden the moving party must prove.
If you have evidence that would help to prove, or rebut information .. know that evidence weights testimony to be more credible and less likely to be ignored.
Years ago, while looking for information that would help me explain the appeal process to employers resistant to being a witness, or providing me with needed evidence, I came across an ebook on the California EDD website. The title seemed to say it all. 27 Ways to Avoid Losing Your Unemployment Appeal
I never forgot how I felt after reading the following in that ebook .. guilty when I knew an employer had appealed on quite questionable merits to appeal.
Parties to appeals, particularly claimants, often focus their attention only on the
separation (discharge or voluntary quit) issue and overlook such additional issues as:
alleged false statements, overpayments, availability or claim filing requirements.
"You may be astonished to hear what the other side has to say when they get before an ALJ. If you approach preparation of the case as if it were your own appeal, you will be better prepared to meet whatever contentions the other side raises."
Parties to appeals often misconceive the issues. For some unknown reason, the claimant who has been disqualified for quitting without good cause spends time and energy producing such things as favorable performance reports to prove he or she was a good worker or, in a case of a discharge for alleged misconduct, comes to the hearing with a long list of complaints about the employing company and job conditions.
Source: Twenty Seven Ways to Avoid Losing Your Unemployment Appeal
Working on the Burden While You're Still an Employee - It surprises many to hear what I know caused their inability to prove good cause to quit, or lack of any if they end up fired. It's frequently nothing more than what they didn't choose to do save and preserve their job .. while they still had a job.
What is the Burden of Misconduct to Fire an Employee - The fortunate thing about the burden of proof for an employer, is that work misconduct is the concept you need to rebut. But, I can't tell you how many time I've talked to someone, only to hear them tell me what they told the initial claim adjudicator .. to question them further and see if there was a way to rehabilitate the story they originally told the department and ended with an initial denial.
Q&As about the Burden of Quitting a Job - Employees are frequently too timid to take on as an employee, what they need to approach proving the burden of fault connected to and attributable to the work, or employer, in some way, even to a special voluntary quit provision that may create exceptions to lessen the burden of proving fault to a lesser degree.
Q&As about Rebutting the Burden of Misconduct - Tell me a story that explains, or just claims, why you don't think you're guilty of breaking employers rules, standards and expectations of behavior, or not meeting the performance requirement an employer has a right to expect, and I'll tell you it may sound good enough, for me to think you maybe should get benefits.
But that still doesn't eliminate any questions I may have to ask you, how you think the employer will try to prove your guilt of misconduct.