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Can an Hourly paid Non-CDL Delivery Driver/Courier File for Unemployment

by G. M.
(NH )

My boss / Owner said I was fired after calling him on a Saturday originally for mistakes he made on my paycheck and pay stub.

It was an hand written payroll check that he forgot to date.

My bank refused to deposit it or cash it. He does not offer direct deposit.

Also, the payroll check number did not match the pay stub check number. He told me he did not care if the pay stub # did not match the payroll check # and told me to just hand write in the date above the amount on the right hand upper side corner of the check.

I also took the opportunity to discuss with the boss the shorted hours and the missing partial reimbursement payment missing, as promised for a phone upgrade for work we discussed prior to this check being issued. (he asked me to upgrade to a smart phone I could not afford).

When asked how much the upgrade cost I told him and he argued with me and refused to pay the full difference.

He then said in a louder tone "I'm not paying more then $10.00. Which he believed should of been the difference. I told him it is was $15.00 difference per month. He said "I was the only employee he agreed to help pay for an upgraded phone".

Well, we both were raising our voices and he said "keep it up Gene and your fired. Before I knew it he yelled "that's it your fired don't come into work on Monday your fired " and hung up.

As a driver, hourly paid employee, can I file a claim for unemployment?

There is no misconduct on my part. Its Monday and he is TEXTING me to call him and talk and maybe still work and he is all ok and he's got everything(work) covered today. And that he is concerned about me being out of a job and does not want me homeless. and if I do not call him soon he is going to move on and not make any more attempts to contact me.

Chris's Answer to: Can an Hourly paid Non-CDL Delivery Driver/Courier File for Unemployment


You can absolutely file for unemployment benefits when fired from any hourly paid, or
salaried job.

However, any opinion I might have as to whether you would end up collecting unemployment from New Hampshire would force me to want to actually read those texts messages from the employer attempting to rescind a discharge that has to be proven as work related misconduct. I suspect the cause behind the argument your action should constitute misconduct would be that your behavior was insubordinate, not that I agree with the assessment, or would discourage you from appealing if denied.

But, to switch sides for a moment .. I have questions about what you did about that check?

Did you alter the check by putting a date on it?

Did you take a photo of it with your new upgraded phone, or even a photo copy of it while at the back .. to serve as potential evidence to lend credibility to any future testimony about the "final incident"?

Also, that conversation you had where you say he insisted you upgrade your phone and also that he would pay for just your extra monthly cost and let other employees just twist in the wind over it.. any chance there might be a text message to prove he insisted you upgrade .. or that he would pay for your upgrade?

Did you present him with an actual bill, to get the reimbursement? Or was that even part of the deal you made with him prior to upgrading?

If you work for a business and in a business's best interest .. it doesn't mean you have to give up the employee right to sensibly .. reasonably, cover your own best interest when an employer decides to show their actual disdain,or even favoritism for certain employees.

For instance .. like when he backed out of a reasonable prerequisite agreement to to pay for the upgrade of a personal cell phone and/or service .. but then backs out of it when questioned by an employee about their very odd payroll check issue .. along with shorted hours .. and then .. no agreement to reimburse the extra cost now required to be an employee.

Hope you went back to work G.M. and that the answer didn't come too late to give you something to think about in any future disputes with this guy.

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by: GM

Hi just to follow up,
NH Unemployment Security has determined I was ( fired) Discharged at no fault of my own and that I was discharged ( Fired ) from my employment after a review of facts from my employer only, finds I was not discharged (Fired) for misconduct connected with my work.

Benefits are allowed for this issue.

I'm not sure to be fully comfortable with this, as I did receive a phone call from an claims officer who was abruptly forward, to let me know the laws and seemed not to want to hear my side. The claim officer said the burden of proof was on the employer. So, I do not know what my employer said or did not say if at all.

Makes me wonder if he made any response, or if he just missed the deadline response date. If he was arguing to pay for small amount of the upgraded phone and the couple of hourly hours missed. I think he would reply asap and argue to pay for full Unemployment for up to 26 weeks.

Hi again GM,

Thanks for the follow up.

Why would you think he would reply and argue to pay for full benefits up to two weeks?

I think an employer would appeal an initial determination allowing benefits to get a NH tribunal appeal hearing (the only full fact finder ERs and EEs have in the UI process) so he might finally make a full attempt to meet his burden to stop benefits.. that his cause for terminating you, was in fact misconduct .. per how unemployment views that.

Employers appealing initial findings is the risk faced by anyone initially found eligible to receive benefits .. but this has been a point I've tried to make for the past eleven years about how unemployment insurance works.

So, let me speculate a bit, about why your former employer might just let things lie, in consideration of what you told me about not being paid overtime, or for all hours worked.

Maybe he knows enough, to know his greater concern may be getting caught violating your's, as well as other current employees rights under the overtime regulations under the FLSA should ever some employee actually go there and know when they should file an FLSA complaint with the WHD (wage and hour division)

Just another way to look at one of the reasons I knew some employers ignored responding to an unemployment claim .. because that can begin another process, that uncovers much worse than just employee misconduct, when an employer chooses to play fast and loose with regulations controlling any employee rights compliance.

This is not to say it's an easy task for a claimant to help unemployment depts. connect the dots from why they were fired .. to an actual employer compliance fear.

Response to your questions
by: GM NH

No there was no text to the prior conversation just brief talk verbally about how important for me to have a smartphone hence he would pay the difference to e give me to get one. I did make a photocopy of the undated handwritten payroll check with paystub for record. Me yes your comment. Ame too late! I we t and filled at home.ployment Dept and did not call him back!

You should come back and let me know how it works out .. and if he spins the final incident differently from how you told it.

Good Luck G.M.!

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