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Due Process Rights? Right to a speedy unemployment hearing?

(Michigan Unemployment Appeals)

I have a family member that was recently fired from a job that she worked at for more than 5 years in Michigan. She was fired back in the spring and applied for unemployment benefits soon after. Her employer contested her right to the benefits and she waited to find out when the hearing would be. She got a date but then the employer received a postponement. She waited again and this time got a date for a phone hearing. Shortly before the phone hearing (last week) her former employer got another postponement. I am wondering if she has any recourse other than just waiting. Isn't she entitled to a speedy hearing under due process? Is there a limit to the number of times that the employer can delay before some kind of summary judgment against them?

Ooh .. that's a different type of question, but I'm still not clear if she was denied or approved for benefits. I would think her rights to due process would be at issue if she had been denied.

Federal guidelines address that a state docket and hear an appeal in a timely manner, but generally a reasonable time frame is 30 days from the date of the appeal deadline .. or at least something along those lines. States are graded on their performance in this area .. which as far as I can tell translates to grant money to fund the operation of a required state unemployment program.

It is usually a state attorney general that is responsible for how well an agency performs .. so it you're thinking of making a complaint about procedural errors and acts in contradiction to the
purpose of unemployment insurance (it's in the statutes) by any section of the UI dept .. that's where I would start.

This is just my experience requesting postponements for MI hearings.

Postponement requests made by an employer when the appeal was filed by the unemployed person were often denied if the reason for the request was less than stellar .. but I never worried much about this because many states were very lax about granting reopenings on appeal of the hearing decision.

I personally found, that many states would relax there standards and allow postponements if it was the employer's appeal .. because in theory .. it wouldn't cause financial harm to the claimant if the proceeding was ppd. I disagree with this theory as it just means there is more benefits to repay if they eventually lose at hearing.

But you are asking this question about Michigan .. and I never had to worry about getting a postponement in MI because they were always denied and then I requested a stay and they were always granted.

All I had to do after the hearing office denied the request for postponement (which they most often did) was to send in a request for stay of the proceeding to the MI board of review and as one rep told me .. they'd grant a stay .. if your cat was pissing purple.

So tell me, was your family member allowed or denied unemployment benefits? Because two postponements is ridiculous although not that uncommon, but it is more rare for employer to be allowed postponements when it is the claimant waiting for a hearing on their own appeal.

MI unemployment decision digest.

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Aug 11, 2011
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The hearing that has been postponed multiple times is the initial hearing. So she doesn't know yet whether she will get to keep her benefits. As you mentioned, the longer that she is delayed the more that she will have to repay. She has been anticipating this and hasn't spent any of the money just in case. I'm not really worried about the money (and I don't think it is the primary concern for her either) so much as it is causing her undue stress with the waiting and delaying, which is of particular importance to her because she deals with anxiety issues. I just wish there was a way to force them to get this over with.

I do not know of a way to force the issue of actually holding the hearing.

The sad part is that I know a cost control companies acting as agents of the employer .. which is my experience .. can string this process out a long time, merely because the employer might be a flake about hearings and the CCC is primarily concerned with preserving the employers right to appeal for as long as they can .. because of a primary function they serve for employers .. keeping unemployment tax experience ratings as low as possible ..

It's what they sell.

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