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State of Maryland; I have an appeal on Tuesday I want some tips for my defense.

by Xvidaurre
(Gaithersburg, Md)

The reason of leaving my jobs was as follows: "Dear Sir or Madam:
This letter is to appeal your determination of unemployment insurance done by specialist ID *****.
I was forced to leave my job because another person was set to basically replace me. After I trained her she became my new supervisor although I was there for 11 years. She is 27 year younger and I am 53 so it was clear that the company decided to keep her rather than me. She saw me as a threat so she realized that I should be gone. Her behavior towards me was constant harassment, intimidation, hostility and abuse. Although I did my best to endure this situation hoping that she would change her abusive practices, however it was a useless intent. It was evident that management had decided to get rid of me. First they downgraded in my position and reduced my pay me hoping that I would leave to avoid having to fire me, then because I did not leave, harassment and abuse intensified, It was a higher management decision which she insured to implement, because when I requested to work in a different section, under a new supervisor, management offered no alternatives nor a solution to stop her abuse.
I performed my duties for 11 years very well; I have a superb record and all my performance reviews were excellent, so it was very surprising to suddenly become an incompetent worker under their view.
I was placed on probation for three months; during those three months I fulfilled all my duties and performed my job way above my duties and very well in order to retain my job. However, at the end of those three months, I was placed on a new probation for completely different reasons which had never been an issue before. I was placed on a new probation because of my accent, and my grammar. As you can see it was impossible for me to get rid of my Spanish accent, and the company offered no opportunities for me to get remedial grammar training, or to get rid of my accent in such a short period of time.
She humiliated me, she ridiculed me, she embarrassed me and I continued tolerating silently all her abuses because I did not want to be fired from my job. However, stress caused headaches, pains, and I could not sleep at night, I talked to her several times to remedy this work issue, but it was so clear that no matter what I did she would finish me so the choice was to continue under her hostility and get sicker, and sicker or to leave, which I had to do because I had no other option.
I was systematically forced out of the company because they realized that they didn’t need me but instead of firing me, to avoid paying any benefits they used a different approach which worked out for them. After all who is always right? The boss no matter what, and it was humanly impossible for me to comply with their requirements to fix my grammar and accent in a few weeks.
I am appealing to your determination to withhold unemployment for 10 weeks and I would like to reinstate the rights so I can get the benefits starting the day that I stopped working.
Hoping to hear from you favorably,


Oh my goodness! Apparently you didn't read the page about how to write an unemployment appeal letter.

My tips are to be factual and completely factual. Answer directly the questions that are asked and do not interrupt anyone.

Get a piece of paper and right down, for yourself, the names of the people you spoke to and about what you spoke to them about in chronological order.

When you were put on probation .. did you counter document of the form the employer had you sign .. in other words did you make clear on the form your reasons the employer was incorrect to take the action they did?

I know it's hard to do, but remove your emotions as much as possible. Don't babble .. like you did in the appeal letter.

Your letter gives way too much emotionally based information for an appeal letter. If someone want to provide a "statement" it should be sent either along with the appeal letter or preferably .. in my opinion as additional documentation after you receive the hearing notice .. in the case of Maryland which conducts hearings in person, just bring three copies of everything to the hearing .. one for you, the hearing examiner, and the opposing side.

Did you subpoena your "excellent performance reviews to add weight to your argument the harassment began with the installation of this person as your supervisor? Do you have documentation that you requested a transfer?

This will probably turn out to be a he said / she said hearing because the employer is going to argue that you quit in anticipation of discharge .. and your appeal letter could be construed this way also.

Please tell me you have filed an EEOC complaint. If what you are saying is true, you have been discriminated against because of your age and your national origin. You should have done this while still employed. Doing so forces the state to evaluate the employer's actions as possibly retaliatory if they had fired you. You may have also been able to control the situation had you asserted your rights while still employed.

Of course this type of situation happens often to people, but the time to assure you can get unemployment benefits or have cause for some other type of "action" is while you are still employed. Now you're behind the eight ball so to speak.

Your appeal letter contradicts itself. Did you struggle in silence or did you make requests to be transferred after making the attempts to remedy the situation by speaking to this person directly. It's all over the place .. there's not even a timeline .. since you chose to give so many details it should have been more concise and list points of facts about what the employer did or did not do that created the hostile work environment and the things that were discriminatory .. instead it's all about what you think and what you believe. The burden of proof is yours so tighten your focus to what the employer did wrong that will give the state no choice, but to find you quit with good cause attributable to the employer.

My suggestion is to read the
Maryland Decision Digest / Voluntary Quit Section 8-1001 to get a handle on what the state will be looking for in order for you to show good cause existed.

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