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My Employer Lied At My Hearing... And I Lost

by B-e-k-a-h
(Florida)

What a great site, Chris.


I live in Florida- oh yay! My appeal should have been a slam dunk. My boss lied and I proved it using her own evidence and testimony. However, the hearing officer still found in the employer's favor (she had 43 pages of documents/3 witnesses, I had none and none). What?!?! lol...

A little background so as to not overwhelm you (since I already had my hearing and have appealed it and filed my brief):

1) The employer did not bother to respond to the initial request for information, so I was awarded benefits.
2) The employer's appeal letter stated she was requesting an appeal hearing because I got into a verbal argument with a co-worker. When she got on the phone she instead said "insubordinate" like a million times (only a slight exaggeration- ha ha)
3) She presented paperwork as "warnings" then proceeded to basically say most of them were not warnings. My favorite was when she said she wrote me up to give me a raise (she presented my yearly evaluation as a warning- ???).

Anyway, I will be happy to provide more info but I really just have one important question-

The employer also said I broke EVERY company policy (man, I am good!). And I was so insurbordinate all the time (2 1/2 years!!) but never provided a copy of any type of policy. Oh and the icing on the cake? I gave 2 weeks' notice and got fired a week into my notice. I am just baffled.

Your thoughts?

Thanks!!

Bekah

Chris's Response




Hi Bekah,

I appreciate that you like the website! I really do, but your question is an example of why I rarely publish new questions for the blog anymore.

However, I did try and read your story over three times in search of the important question and never found a question except one asking for my thoughts.

So, here goes that.

I'm sorry you lost the first hearing and have had to submit a written argument to the Florida Unemployment Review Board .. because having to win board appeals just to get, or keep benefits, is what I basically warn against.

The question for me is what do you really want me to think about, that is also relevant to how unemployment might not be working out in your case, without a clue as to any truly pertinent details to jump start my brain on the subject of what makes a valid appeal to a board of review.

I don't have the contents of the hearing referee's decision.

I certainly do not know anything about the referees conduct of the hearing.

I do not know if your brief asked for a reversal, or cited hearing officer procedural errors that might justify a vacate and remand back down to the lower appeal hearing level for a new hearing.

I do not not know if you just argued in that brief for an additional first level hearing in front of the same referee to correct a procedural mistake they might of made so you have the opportunity to properly be allowed to add information to the record.

I don't know if your only argument was to say the hearing officer abused his/her wide discretion to determine who was lying and who was credible and telling the truth, merely because you tell me you think you proved the employer was lying.

I'm not trying to be rude .. I'm just want you to "stick to the fact of the case ma'am" and not force me to ask for information so I can avoid making assumptions influenced by the passive aggressive comments .. and simply focus my thoughts on what really happened at the hearing that may justify that board appeal argument .. which I'm clearly, clueless as to it's content.

Chris

Comments for My Employer Lied At My Hearing... And I Lost

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Jan 09, 2017
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My Employer Lied At My Hearing...And I Lost
by: maketacosnotwar

I totally understand where this guy was coming from. My employer did have a handbook, and I also supposedly broke lots of rules, but they are ridiculous stuff like we were not allowed to speak to customers and this is a small home cleaning company. It sucks when someone lies and gets away with it. I have not had my hearing yet, I won my claim, after she tried to dispute it originally, now she appealing it, and I am just worried about paying it back if I lose. I am in Seattle. I just got a job, so no skin off my back if I lose as far as future payments, but does anyone know if they can take your Federal Tax return? I really hope all the people here are having a great day and I wish a happy new year to you all!



The answer to your question about federal tax returns being redirected to pay for overpayments of benefits is a simple matter of checking what Washington State provisions for recovering overpayments allow.

You can check that out right here.

Happy New Year to you as well.

Chris - Unemployment-Tips.com

PS For anyone else who may have an upcoming Washington unemployment hearing coming up. The state does not require a hearing rep to be an attorney. Also, WA typically conducts appeal hearings by phone, so it's never been hard for me to find an experienced non-attorney rep if you need a referral.

Jun 16, 2016
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Attorneys are not required for a Florida unemployment hearing
by: Chris - Unemployment-Tips.com

Attorneys are not only more costly, a claimant is lucky to find one.

A non-attorney will do in many states .. and the ones I work with have tons of experience at hearings.

I refer Florida cases and those I send cases to .. have abundant experience and first conduct a free initial evaluation. They have all represented not only employers and employees .. but some have even been an appeal hearing referee/officer.

Sorry to hear about your experience .. and sorry it's now sounds like a board level appeal is in order.

Hopefully your written argument will be good and on point for a reversal .. or remand for a new hearing with a fair and impartial Florida unemployment referee.

And thank you.

Jun 16, 2016
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Hire an Attorney on Appeals (Florida)
by: Robert V.

In this state (Florida) always,always consider an attorney to represent u at a unemployment hearing..
Appeals Referee (E.Loschi) was so rude I couldn't believe it..did not let speak about the facts and told me to shut up and do not object...wtf!!..Im about to file a complaint on Him with my Attorney..where's the impartial people in this state???

Chris awsome site u have...very knowledgeable information for those of us in the dark...Reading is
Comprehensive....

Feb 17, 2016
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Comment to "Notice"
by: Chris - Unemployment-Tips.com

Seriously, that you're asking that rhetorical question at all, makes me think you might be an "employer" who refuses to acknowledge that good cause to quit can be present and most often, when fault for quitting can be attributed to an employer.

Feb 17, 2016
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Notice
by: Anonymous

Why should you get unemployment if you turned in notice that you were quitting??

Oct 08, 2015
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Good luck Deanna
by: Bekah

I hope it goes well for you. Remember to object to anything you feel is not quite right, so it is on the record.

As for my case, if I was so insubordinate, why did my employer keep me for 2 1/2 years and only fired me AFTER I gave my two weeks' notice? That alone seems suspect. There was NO documentation regarding insubordination, just 1 sentence from my first warning over 2 years before I quit stating I completed a task out of order. That is not insubordination... possibly poor job performance but at that point I had only been there two months. She presented my yearly evaluation (got raises both years) as a warning.

Other than that, she just kept using the word insubordination but provided no dates or examples, except for my last day of employment, which I refuted. Her own evidence contradicted her testimony.

Basically, I got a moron of a hearing officer.

DEANNA,

If you have evidence or a witness to something your employer "springs on you" during the hearing, ask for a continuance to get your evidence. You can't know in advance to defend yourself against something you don't know you'll be accused of... that's what happened to me. She claimed in her appeal letter that she wanted to appeal because I had a disagreement with a co-worker, not because I was insubordinate. Good luck!!! And object, object, object...

Bekah


Oct 08, 2015
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To DeAnna
by: Chris

I'll assume you're referencing the original question here.

We have one version to go on and I'm not so sure there wasn't any paperwork to prove insubordination.

But let's say there wasn't any written warnings relevant to insubordination, or the final incident of it at the hearing.

That would make the employer's and the employee's testimony at the hearing .. something along the lines of he said / she said.

I for one, would want to avoid that type of scenario if at all possible because that would mean you have to leave the hearing decision up to the W-I-D-E discretion of the hearing officer to decide who told the most credible story at the hearing.

That would make me nervous .. because there is no accounting of just how impartial the hearing officer might be who hears an unemployment appeal case. And if you don't object on the record of the hearing to protect your rights to due process from that hearing officer .. the question is .. what do you hang a board level appeal on .. if you lose the first hearing.

Proof (or, if you prefer documents that become submitted evidence) serve the purpose of adding weight to what someone testifies to.

When there is an absence of evidence about job separation facts .. who's telling the truth (or the most credible version of events leading to the end of a job) is now left up to the hearing officer who has the responsibility and the authority to decide who did tell the truth so ..

Yes, although I harp about proof and know it is important, I also know what it really can do if testimony sounds a bit crazy and improbable, is weight the words as being credible .. and maybe even irrefutable.

Oct 08, 2015
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Something not quite right
by: DeAnna

According to most all I have read ( I have an appeal coming up tomorrow) if she did not have any records/documented papers/etc... then it seems to me you should have won your case. If she could not prove anything of which she was saying, how did they side with her? If all what you said was true, I would have pushed further also.

Jul 02, 2015
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Thanks for the help Chris
by: Bekah

"Sounds like a smart ass. Doesn't Florida have one of the lowest paying ue compensation benefits out of 50 states? Slam dunk? If she,was as great an employee as is her writing details no wonder..."

Is this why you posted under the name anonymous? I have no idea what point you are trying to get across. You just come across as a troll.

Thanks for your help, Chris. Nothing I can do about it now except wait. My former employer responded to my brief. It was quite hysterical. The point is all she did was shout out words like "confidential", "insubordinate" and "agitated" etc. No concrete evidence. I just denied it (on account of it's not even the slightest bit true).

I will update you when I get the decision but it will likely be a long while from now.

Again, my thanks.


I wasn't much help Bekah, but still, "you're welcome".

Chris - Unemployment-Tips.com

Jun 27, 2015
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I have nothing to say about the possibility of you breaking every policy
by: Chris - Unemployment-Tips.com

It's pointless now, for you to want me to answer/discuss what the employer claimed to be true, that you broke every policy.

What would be the point .. is what you did to rebut that contention during the hearing.

Jun 26, 2015
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Slam debunk
by: Anonymous

Sounds like a smart ass. Doesn't Florida have one of the lowest paying ue compensation benefits out of 50 states? Slam dunk? If she,was as great an employee as is her writing details no wonder...

Jun 26, 2015
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Your comments are appreciated
by: Bekah

I know you're not trying be rude. You're trying to help and it's hard without all of the facts. But please keep in mind some people have had 2 hour hearings and it's hard to sum some stories up (ha ha) in just a few brief sentences. That's why I offered to answer any questions. Really though, I think my tangent got confusing. When I am passionate about something I can be all over the place. No worries though, I was calm and way more organized during my hearing ;)


Thanks again!

Jun 25, 2015
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I went off on a tangent...
by: Bekah

Sorry but I did go off on a tangent. I didn't want to overwhelm you with details since the brief has already been filed and it's the hands of the RAAC now.

My main question was about a policy handbook. Apparently, I broke every rule in it but no such handbook was submitted by the employer, nor submitted into evidence. This to me, just shows she is a liar. Who could possibly break EVERY, SINGLE policy? And what are these policies if she didn't even submit any type of handbook? How could she possibly prove it just by stating that in a hearing???

I hope I was a little more clear now. I can still answer your other questions but I don't want to waste your time.

Thanks again.

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