Unemployment Appeal Process about my case - Ohio
Excellent site by the way, you are doing an invaluable service for those in their time of need.
Anyway, I am 41, have worked since I was 14 (on a farm back then) and have been in my field of architecture for the past 17+ years. I've worked for 3 different companies over those 17 yrs and all with exemplary reviews! One company for 8 yrs, another for 7 yrs, and lastly, my last REAL JOB was for 2 yrs. Now when I say REAL JOB I mean a respectable company that people are willing and eager to work for, NOT like some of these owners who treat their employees without any respect whatsoever. (I think you may know where I'm going with this!)
Anyway, I got laid off from my last position due to "lack of work" just this past June 2009. The economy was in the midst of a downward spiral, and I was given ample time from my previous employer to go an try finding another position. I was very fortunate and found a new office willing to hire me during that time and didn't miss a day of work. I was let go on 6/5 and started my new position on 6/8. It was probably the only architectural office hiring at that time in the State of Ohio. I was grateful, I didn't have to burden the already overbooked unemployment system (although I had every right to at the time and should have!)
Needless to say, my thankfulness became regret rather quickly. My new bosses were direct from Hades! Well, I can't say they all were, but ONE in particular had a special knack for ruining everyones lives on a frequent basis. And wouldn't you know, that was the 1 of the 3 that I had to work directly for. Problem was, she wasn't abusive to me or others about our work being wrong, just that it didn't hold to some office standard that no one was trained on or even knew about. I know our work was good, I've been doing it for 17 years. Since I was in a supervisory role and being the lead on projects for others I worked with, I was especially abused. They made us constantly change the drawings and run up the hours on the project because of these changes they insisted be made. I was being told that I was "wasting their time and money" on the work. After the constant abuse on this, I ended up blowing up at one of the owners. I took out my frustrations on him after he used the "wasting time and money" line on me AGAIN! So I ended up going to the president of the company and sat down with him to vent my frustrations about the constant abuse. Funny this was, it was his wife that was the one doing much of the abuse. I never really saw or interacted with him much except for the interview.
Well, he said he had heard of no issues with my work and assured me he would get the partners together when they returned. This was at noon, and come 5pm they all just decided to leave me hanging. Didn't approach me to discuss, even though I had overheard them all discussing the situation earlier in their office. This blatant disregard, BY MY BOSSES, for my well being just made me realize I've had enough. I'd been there about 2 months, they didn't want to address it, didn't have enough respect for me to come and talk, why should I have the respect for them and continue working? So I packed up my things and left. Only about a month after working there and seeing the abuse, not only to myself, but other employees, I realized this was not the place for me and started looking for
other work. I did have an interview, but nothing more came of that.
Fast forward to today (sorry so long) and I just received the letter once again denying my unemployment claim because I quit without "just cause" from this job. Funny thing was they also said it was approved for "lack of work" from my previous job, but I guess since I quit this 2 month stint, I need to work for another 6 weeks and become unemployed again before my benefits would kick in.
I assure you that any ordinary intelligent person would have done the same thing under these same conditions, and actually has! The person I took over the job for had walked out because of the abuse (or fired, not quite sure) and was told that by numerous people in the office. Same happened with the person before him. I saw one of the girls in the office get fired by this raving lunatic of a boss. I talked with this girl recently and she said the owners are also denying her claim, saying that she quit. I am planning on appealing my claim and even going to court if necessary. What are your thoughts on this? Also, I know I have subpoena rights, but can I subpoena this companies employee documents on hirings/firings? Can I subpoena the unemployment services documents on others who have made claims from this company in the past that may support my claim? Or am I just spinning my wheels?
Thanks for your help and thanks especially for bearing with me during my ramblings on of only a few of the facts.
Hi there Chris,
You realize that this is what I offer my services for, but there was one little part of your story that needs to be explored by you.
I assume you have read my page about quitting.
The part of your story that I'm having a problem with is:
"This was at noon, and come 5pm they all just decided to leave me hanging. Didn't approach me to discuss, even though I had overheard them all discussing the situation earlier in their office. This blatant disregard, BY MY BOSSES, for my well being just made me realize I've had enough."
No, you cannot subpoena others unemployment or personnel files from this employer. You can subpoena documents you know to exist in your file or other documents that will be relative to YOUR choice to quit. You of course could ask others to be a witness to add weight to the INTOLERABLE working conditions.
I cannot tell if it was actually 4 hours that you allowed to the employer to address your problem or not .. but it sounds like it ... this is not good.
Employer do not deny unemployment benefits when you quit .. or even when you are fired.
The state does that after receiving information from you and the employer. You failed to present the good cause for quitting.
You quit. The burden to show it was with good or just cause is yours alone.
It sounds like you quit because the president left you hanging. What took place in that private meeting with him is relevant, but I think it would be extremely difficult to prove you had good cause because you did not allow the employer enough time to "correct" what it was that you spoke to him about.
Personally, I'm right there with you. I decided to start a website so I wouldn't need to be reliant on others who insisted I work longer and harder for the same amount of pay as a reward for my years of hard work. Sometimes the price is just to high for a "paycheck".
Instead I'm working longer and harder for less money .. but I'm in control of every choice I make now. To me, that is invaluable.