Is there hope for an unemployment appeal in Virginia?
Two years ago, on four occasions within a two week period I was late. On two of those occasions I overslept and did not notify my supervisor. On the other two occasions I was a few mins late and notified my supervisor.
I was homeless at the time and sleeping in my car. On the two mornings I didn’t contact my supervisor I had overslept from trying to find someplace safe & close to the job to sleep (so that I would not be late).
It was hard because the poorer areas (right around the job) have a very high crime rate and the people that live in the more affluent areas are likely to call the police if they see a strange car parked in their neighborhood. I also didn’t want to get into trouble for getting caught sleeping in my car.
I was placed on Final Warning due to attendance issues stemming from these incidents.
Due to embarrassment, I didn’t immediately make my situation known. The reasons for my tardiness became known to my supervisor after I received the warning, but well before my termination. At one point I asked my supervisor about the possibility of an alternate schedule. My schedule could not be changed due to business hours.
After that I got my housing situation straightened out. I subscribed to traffic text alerts and listened to highway advisory radio every morning.
Well over a year lapsed without any major incidences.
Then one week my car battery died and I was late to work.
Two weeks later, although I left early, I was a few mins late due to inclement weather.
The third and final incident, two days later, was due to an accident that had four lanes of the interstate blocked. That morning there were no traffic text alerts or notices on the state radio station about this accident (I’m presuming the accident was too new).
The person that made the decision to fire me did/does not know why I was late, only that I was late.
I am certain the reasons provided for my tardiness were not documented, only that I was late.
Other co-workers were late, but nothing was done because they were salaried (or they were hourly, but didn’t work at the front desk).
Although I tried to present just the bare facts during my 1st hearing, the interviewer would not let me complete about 1/3 of my sentences. I was disqualified for misconduct - excessive tardiness in known violation of a company rule. My employer documented all write-ups.
I don’t want to collect unemployment. I would rather be working, but am having difficulty finding a job and plan to appeal.
Any hope for a win during 1st appeal??
The first "appeal" is generally the only hope.
Let's just put the VA "factfinder behind us. Most states do not conduct two party factfinders, which is nothing more than "adjudicator interview for the majority of states.
You've asked the wrong question of the wrong person .. because if there is one iota of hope you can usually find me all over it:)
So let me tell you what I have assumed .. first.
That you did follow the employer's call-off procedure for all of these most recent incidents of lateness (I've assumed so because you subscribed to "text alerts")
Now let me caution you about the state you live in. Virginia is one of the more stingy states when it comes to giving unemployment.
I'm also going to disregard the occurrences of two years ago.
You made effort to avoid being late .. you subscribed to traffic text alerts.
1. The Battery. Do you have a witness? A neighbor who gave you a jump? A receipt for a new battery? Something to show you had AAA or some other outfit help you get back on the road?
2. A weather report or something to show that the weather was inclement enough to make you late that day .. despite leaving early for work.
3. An old news article or state highway dept. report on the accident and the ensuing traffic jam?
What's the point of all this? Presenting evidence that the tardiness was beyond your control on all three counts. That there could be no misconduct when your control over the circumstances cannot be established. It is for this reason that people discharged after being gone from work due to illness often get the benefits.
Testimony backed up by something to support testimony is a winning combination when combined with a valid argument.