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Hi - Question regarding telephone appeal hearing in Florida...

by Gloria
(Brooksville, Florida)

My telephone appeal is scheduled for 2/24/09. I am in Florida. I quit due to inhospitable working conditions and retaliation from supervisor. I walked out. Can you help me with your opinion on what I need to be prepared with on my big day? - Thanks - GMS

Hi Gloria,

It would be a big help if I knew some details about what the determination stated, what the employer told the state, whether the employer submitted documents (write-ups), what made you walk out...etc.

But I can give you some general information. If you have any type of documentation you want to use at the hearing that will support your contentions of intolerable working conditions and acts of retaliation....fax them to the attention of the hearing officer and send them to the address listed for the employer on the hearing notice. Documentation should also include anything you did to try to correct the situation prior to quitting. If you think someone would be helpful as a witness, get them lined up for the hearing by asking them to be your witness or subpoena them by following the instructions on the hearing notice. But do be very sure they will be helpful. And do read about Florida unemployment hearings here.

If you lack these things...know this:

Unlike the initial adjudication process by the claims representative who makes a limited attempt to gather information to issue a determination, the hearing is a really a "fact finder mission". It is the job of the hearing officer to fully develop the facts and to preserve the record.

If you do not like the decision of the hearing officer, any further appeal will have to deal with errors of the hearing officer with regard to hearing procedures, which are also addressed in the statutes.

Gloria, most states require action on the part of the person that show they gave the employer the opportunity to resolve the situation. If you spoke to the manager, HR or any other authority in attempts to resolve the problem, this should be your focus. It is very often the case that your attempts to correct a you could continue working...create the good cause the state must find to allow payment of benefits.

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Oct 14, 2013
by: Anonymous

I also am in the same situation and the agency is saying I did not call in for further work assignments. I did but have no way to prove it. What can I do? They say they called me to offer work and they did not. Who has the burden of proof?

A temporary staffing agency is saying you didn't ask for further assignment? If you're in Florida too, and it was a temp agency you last worked for the table I refer to on the page linked above would lead one to believe the issue on any hearing notice would be a voluntary quit .. and VQs put the burden on the employee.

However, this is sort of a special quit because the provision only applies to contingent temp workers.

A smart temp agency would have the date and times of any real calls logged .. otherwise it's just the typical unsubstantiated ruse a good cross examination of the employer by you, may expose.

Additionally, pay attention to who is testifying for the employer .. I would think if you did place calls to ask for more work .. you know who you spoke to and what days and at what time??

Apr 06, 2009
Having to repay unemployment compensation
by: Dee


received a letter from the Florida Department of Unemployment stating that I was ineligible to file a claim and requesting that I must repay the overpayment of benefits. This is because my temporary employment agency says I quit because I did not call them to find work. However, I did call them on a weekly basis sometimes I would reach a person and speak with them or reach an answering machine. I was continually told they had nothing and to keep looking on their website for any jobs opening. After a while I stop calling and leaving messages since they could not successfully find me a job, but I continued to look on their job site. The unemployment office stated in their letter to me ?The claimant left the job by failing without good cause to contact the employer, an employee leasing company, for another work assignment. The claimant was advised at the time of hire and separation of the requirement to contact the employer upon completion of each temporary assignment and that failure to do so could result in a denial of unemployment compensation benefits.? I received nothing in writing nor did I sign anything to this effect. So how can I go about appealing this?

Hi Dee,

I thought you had a phone hearing on 2/24. What happened at the hearing? Did the employer submit documentation? Did you give testimony to your calls to the temp agency for another assignment?

Or was it just an adjudicator call you were talking about.

This is where you can file a Florida unemployment appeal. It's just not that difficult to file an appeal.

I wish to appeal the determination (insert date determination was mailed). I did not fail to contact the employer for another assignment.

That should get you a hearing. I have a page on
unemployment appeals here.

I'll bet when you first went to the temp agency and filled out all the paperwork, you also signed a notice that you must contact the temp agency for further assignments. It's SOP.

But this does not mean anything if the you did contact them and they were unable to provide additional work. It is then a lack of work.

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