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Fired, applied for UC, and awaiting further questionnaire for a determination to be made

by CM
(Philadelphia, PA)

I am in PA and I have worked for a little over a year at a small company. I had, over the course of that year, medical issues which caused me to miss work. I always followed call out procedures and provided a note as often as I could (policy did not require one unless one was absent for three days) However, I missed time where I exhausted my sick time and went unpaid - both documented. One was a near broken neck, the earlier I had some medical conditions that had been chronic. I did not tell HR about my chronic condition, but I did discuss and was open with my direct supervisor about what had been going on, arranging appointments around her schedule to be as compliant as possible. I did receive warnings about 'dependability', but was let go. I actually never got an official reason for termination, but when I filed, I did so as terminated for absenteeism. The state is investigating my claim, and I am awaiting a questionnaire to then send back, at which point my case will be determined. MY employer told me they would not contest unemployment. Can the investigator still rule against me? I am already stressing about the amount of time the process is taking and was told it could take even longer (I was fired three and a half weeks ago). If the employer doesn't contest, am I going to get my benefits? Or is it up to the whim and fancy of whoever reviews my case??

Hi CM,

LOL, The whim and fancy of the claims interviewer is supposed to be directly related to the established laws and the precedents that interpret those laws.

But it raises a detail that a lot of people miss.

Even though an employer tells you they won't protest .. they often do anyway and
if they keep their word an don't protest .. it's still important to keep in mind that it is not an employer that determines eligibility for benefits based on the merits for the reason for separation.

This brings up the need for the unemployment claimant to understand that they can easily self-disqualify their self .. by making assumptions about what they should or should not say.

You, my internet acquaintance, told me that you believe you were fired for attendance issues .. even though the employer did not specify their reason to you "dependability" implies that you were being reprimanded for not being at work.

You also told me that your absences were due to being ill and other chronic medical issues and that you always followed the proper call-off procedures and provided Dr. notes when you could or were required to.

Although I haven't seen a PA questionnaire for some time .. I suspect that they will ask when your last absence was prior to the discharge and what it was for.

This is because "the final incident" that prompted the discharge needs to be known, so whether it correlates directly to a valid reason for being absent or a non-valid reason for being absent can be determined.

You can have a string of valid reasons for being absent that are beyond your control and for which the employer followed their progressive discipline policy, but if the last absence was for a reason you should have known better .. watch out.

The way this is applied varies from state to state. Some will omit the good causes for being absent and then view the situation as a whole, where others .. don't and only consider the "final incident"

And look there .. I didn't have to ask you even one question to give you what I think is a complete answer.

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Oct 14, 2009
An unemployment benefit guarantee???
by: Chris - (webmaster:)

Guarantee???? I have never seen that word included in any part, of anything, associated with unemployment benefits .. have you?

In fact, that word makes me do one of two things .. run for the hills .. or crack out my magnifying glass and read the fine print.

Oct 14, 2009
by: cm

So there really is no guarantee is there?

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