Denied UC because of unusual circumstances
Hi, I have been denied UC based on a questionaire that was mailed out to me December 21st, 2010 and was due December 27th, 2010. My claim is in PA and I reside in FL. It takes 3 days to get to FL from Harrisburg PA. and 3 days to get back to Harrisburg PA. I received this questionaire December 24th, 2010. I filled it out and mailed it back. I called UC Center Monday December 27th, 2010 and they were so busy, they utilized the “Callback” system, where you enter your information and phone number and then they call you back within 36 hours. I received a call December 28th, 2010 stating that my UC has been denied for not getting the form back to them on time. So I immediately appealed. Christmas Eve was Friday, Christmas day was Saturday and Sunday the mail does not run so how on Earth was I supposed to get this form back to the UC Center for review on time? Now they are saying that my employer said I had quit when I was terminated. I was not given a reason for termination and had received a termination letter in the mail and still did not state why I was terminated. What shall I do? How should I approach the appeal hearing? Obviously I have to have a telephone hearing since I live in a different state than the benefits are given. How do I deal with this? Everything, including my child support, rides on this. What next? Thank you very much.
This is not really unusual circumstances .. this is the unemployment department acting as normal.
If nothing else your experience should drive home, yet again, the reason I always tell people to fax everything when possible, or mail everything in a way that can verify you sent it in plenty of time
If there is one thing I learned about unemployment departments no matter what state, they all expect everyone to comply with deadlines.
I think there is a good argument in there somewhere about the holidays interfering with timely receipt of the questionnaire.
You did what you had to do .. you appealed immediately and hopefully, timely.
As for dealing with the hearing .. which will have to be by phone for you .. this alone can send PA into a tail spin because they do like their in person hearing set-up and they have some goofy rules about setting phone hearings .. I can’t remember the details .. but there seems to be some “two week” rule for notification of a phone hearing .. for all parties.
It should not be a big deal to get phone participation approved, since you are now living in FL ..
To request a phone participation for yourself, fax the request to the referees office, the number should be listed on the right hand side in the middle of the notice .. state the reason you need to request phone and then follow up with a call to the referees office to verify receipt of the fax ..
I would have requested phone with the appeal .. just to put them on notice and then faxed that along as well with the request to show the fault was theirs.
Preparing for the hearing itself .. I suggest you get a hearing rep or at least prepare as best you can for the “discrepancy in the reason for separation”.
This includes lining up the attendance of any necessary witnesses and acquisition and disbursement of any relevant documents to all parties involved prior to the hearing .. according to the hearing instructions.
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