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Old 05-03-2014, 12:38 PM
 
14 posts, read 13,711 times
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I was hoping that some of you could help talk me through me case and prepare for my unemployment appeal hearing. I've been quite stressed since I found out that my eligibility was being challenged. Sorry in advance for the wall of text!

Here's a breakdown of the events leading to my filing for unemployment:

I had been working at a retail store for approximately 2 1/2 years when my significant other and I decided to look into moving to another city. I approached my bosses to look into being able to transfer to another store and they told me that would definitely help set me up. I was then told that I had a transfer in place and that my new boss would like to meet with me to talk about what I had already been trained to do, where I would fit into the team, availability, etc. Once I was told I had a transfer set up I went full-steam ahead on moving (signing the lease, booking a moving truck, etc.) and moved in on August 1st. Prior to physically moving down, I scheduled meeting up with the boss on August 24th. When I got there things went smoothly until the topic of my availability came up. I said I was available opening (usually 9 or 10 but free to come in earlier if needed)-6 everyday because 1. I had a long commute and 2. I don't live in the safest of areas and didn't want to be walking around alone too late at night. The boss said that wasn't acceptable and she needed open availability because of the upcoming holiday season until 12am. I said that I wasn't able to do that (I would be stranded because my commute would be a 45 minute bus ride back to the city, and then I would have to take a subway back closer to where I live and the last subway closes at 12:30) and she said I couldn't work there because it wouldn't be fair to everybody else who "found a way to make it work." She told me of some other stores to try and to reach out if I couldn't make things work with those stores.

So I looked into the other stores she told me and they were not within reasonable commute distance so I didn't pursue them. I called back to their store and she was unavailable so I left a message for her to call me back and she never did. I assumed at that point that she was not interested in working with me. So I contacted my old boss and told her that my new boss wasn't interested in working with me and so it looks like I'd have to be quitting. Fast forward 5 months and I haven't found work and I've burned through all my savings. At this point I filed for unemployment and received benefits for approximately 2 months. On the same day I got hired at my new job I got a notice saying that I was being appealed for unemployment. I stopped claiming benefits at that time. When the date of the hearing came I got a phone call saying that the representation for the company said they would not be present in the hearing and the case was sustained.

And now today I get a letter in the mail saying that my former employer is appealing the decision (saying that the reason they cancelled was due to their witness, the boss at the store I was supposed to transfer to, was not able to attend. Pretty last minute cancellation for scheduling conflicts if you ask me...) At this point I really don't care if I can continue being eligible for benefits because I've been employed for a while and haven't been getting benefits. I just don't want to have to pay back any of the benefits I received.

If I was to guess at the arguments they will try to make it would be these: They might say that I didn't call her back when the other stores turned out to not be an option. I'm guessing maybe she never got my message? She might also say that I didn't clearly communicate my transportation issues to her and that would be true. However, I wasn't really thinking of desperately fighting to work there because I was going to look into the other stores and plus I was nervous talking to my new boss so of course I'm not thinking perfectly clear. On my notice of the first appeal the reasoning was listed that I "voluntarily quit to relocate and leave the area." Which is untrue because I only relocated once I had been told that I had a transfer in place. If I had known there was any possibility of the transfer going wrong then I wouldn't have moved out in the first place. Now the records state that my last day was August 20th. From my understanding, I had to be removed from the system and then added in again under my new store location. Hence why I was removed from the system on the same week that I was supposed to start working at the new store. I managed to get a written statement from one of my old managers saying that I did indeed have a transfer set up for the first hearing but two of the other managers are no longer in the company and I don't know how to contact them. Especially the one who personally set up the transfer. I'm in the process of getting another statement from another manager too. Downside is that apparently all records of my transfer are gone because of a change in the computer systems, hence why I am having to get written statements vouching for me instead. That makes me think that they might say that the transfer wasn't guaranteed or that when I met with the manager it was more of a formal job interview or something. If that is true then that wasn't communicated to me by my old bosses. Besides, if it was a formal job interview then it certainly didn't function like one. I've been in enough interviews to know that the hiring managers tend to go to a quieter place either in the back where customers can't go or something. We just sat in these chairs in the store where customers were constantly walking past us.

I was hoping for some input from you all. Any thoughts on evidence I should gather? Tips for the hearing? Thoughts about my chances to win in general? I just really really don't want to have to pay back the money I received in benefits. That's all I care about.

Last edited by Tajiloh; 05-03-2014 at 01:16 PM..
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Old 05-03-2014, 01:27 PM
 
14 posts, read 13,711 times
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Oh yeah and I should mention that the place I was originally employed at was in New York while the place I was transferring to was Pennsylvania. I filed for unemployment in New York so I think it will abide by their laws? Not sure though.
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Old 05-03-2014, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Central Florida
2,063 posts, read 2,099,333 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tajiloh View Post
Oh yeah and I should mention that the place I was originally employed at was in New York while the place I was transferring to was Pennsylvania. I filed for unemployment in New York so I think it will abide by their laws? Not sure though.
''

What stands out to me about all this is that they actually accepted the transfer before finding out your availability. Shouldn't they have gone over that with you ahead of time?
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Old 05-03-2014, 01:55 PM
 
14 posts, read 13,711 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vanguardisle View Post
''

What stands out to me about all this is that they actually accepted the transfer before finding out your availability. Shouldn't they have gone over that with you ahead of time?
Fair point. I'm not sure why they did. It would've made sense and prevented a whole lot of trouble if I had been asked beforehand. It's retail though so most places are quite used to unusual availability. I thought my availability was quite fair considering I was free to work every day of the week for at least 8 hours. There are plenty of people who worked at this company who would only be available 3-4 days a week for 6 or so hours.
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Old 05-03-2014, 08:03 PM
 
11,132 posts, read 15,231,185 times
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What did you tell unemployment when you first applied as the reason for being unemployed? That is vital because the story you just told shoud have disquaifed you if you did provide all those details. The key is to see what you originally told unemployment and stay in that realm.
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Old 05-03-2014, 10:07 PM
 
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I told them exactly what I told you. I've never lied or omitted anything.
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Old 05-03-2014, 10:51 PM
 
14,508 posts, read 25,977,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabrrita View Post
The key is to see what you originally told unemployment and stay in that realm.
I don't know if this means what I want it to mean, but I'd like to say that what you say first carries a lot of weight. However, you can reshape things. You think you quit, but the to me, you were fired.

Reasoning: You had a job, you were transferred, you moved, you made yourself available, and the hiring manager didn't put you to work.

Even if it's a quit, it could be a quit with good cause. If you weren't working until 12 am before, then it's substantially less favorable to make you do it now.

You also make it sound like you were denied benefits in the beginning, but were granted benefits because you don't want to pay them back.

Just what steps have you completed already? If there was already a hearing, then this other thing may not be really be an appeal hearing, but rather a board of review hearing and this is your chance to submit a written answer and not attend a new hearing.

I'll walk you through how I think it should have gone

Did you apply for UI?

Did you get a determination denying you benefits?

Did you appeal?

Did you have a hearing?

Was your employer a no show?

Did you get a decision from that hearing?

Was it in your favor? Why was it in your favor?

Did your employer submit something asking for a new hearing? Was it granted? Do you have a new hearing date? Is a new (de novo) hearing or a reopening?

All this procedural stuff matters because if you're sufficiently far enough into the process the employer isn't going to be able to do much because the time do to something has long passed, but I just can't tell that for sure because I'm not certain you really know where in the process you're at.
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Old 05-03-2014, 11:26 PM
 
11,132 posts, read 15,231,185 times
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[quote=Chyvan;34649811Reasoning: You had a job, you were transferred, you moved, you made yourself available, and the hiring manager didn't put you to work.

Even if it's a quit, it could be a quit with good cause. If you weren't working until 12 am before, then it's substantially less favorable to make you do it now.[/quote]
I'm not sure it will be seen as a termination if the empoyer is providing facts. I don't even see a finalized transfer, only an approval of the transfer pending the new manager's acceptance of the transfer. Because the manager never accepted the transfer, it will fall back on why the OP is not there. In addition, the OP quit not at the tranfer location but at the old location they left. If they were transfered, it would have been at the new location, not old.

I suspect the employer never responded and is now appealing.
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Old 05-03-2014, 11:59 PM
 
14,508 posts, read 25,977,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabrrita View Post
I'm not sure it will be seen as a termination if the empoyer is providing facts. I don't even see a finalized transfer, only an approval of the transfer pending the new manager's acceptance of the transfer. Because the manager never accepted the transfer, it will fall back on why the OP is not there. In addition, the OP quit not at the tranfer location but at the old location they left. If they were transfered, it would have been at the new location, not old.
I think this is an equally valid interpretation of what's been presented here after I reread things, and would mean a denial of benefits.

To the OP, knowing that, you need to make sure that this interpretation is not possible by telling your story correctly and being able to back it up assuming that there is still the possiblity of a new hearing.
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Old 05-04-2014, 01:48 AM
 
14 posts, read 13,711 times
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Alright thanks for the discussion. Let me clear up a few points.

Quote:
Did you apply for UI?
Yes. I applied in January and and claimed benefits for 7 weeks from the week ending on Jan 26th-the week ending on March 9th.

Quote:
Did you get a determination denying you benefits?
No. Although I did have to give evidence that I had a transfer set in place before being approved for benefits. The proof I offered was a statement from one of my old managers and the person in charge of my case deemed it sufficient proof to grant me benefits.

Quote:
Did you have a hearing?
I was scheduled to have a hearing by telephone since the hearing would be taking place in NYS while I am in PA.

Quote:
Was your employer a no show?
Correct. The employer notified the judge that they would not be able to attend the morning of the hearing.

Quote:
Did you get a decision from that hearing?
The decision was that the ruling was sustained and I could continue receiving benefits due to the employer being a no-show. The employer is now appealing saying that the reason they were a no-show was because their witness couldn't attend due to work demands (which I think is odd considering they had plenty of time to notify her...)

Quote:
Did your employer submit something asking for a new hearing? Was it granted? Do you have a new hearing date? Is a new (de novo) hearing or a reopening?
It looks like they sent an e-mail or something asking for a new hearing. At this point in time, I have been notified that a hearing will take place. I am supposed to be receiving more information with an actual hearing date in the near future.

Quote:
You also make it sound like you were denied benefits in the beginning, but were granted benefits because you don't want to pay them back.
No. What I was trying to say was that the only thing I care about in the ruling of the case is that I don't have to pay back the money I received in benefits. I no longer have any need for being on unemployment, but if I have to pay back that money it would be a significant hardship.

Quote:
In addition, the OP quit not at the tranfer location but at the old location they left. If they were transfered, it would have been at the new location, not old.
Incorrect. What I was trying to say was that I had been removed from the system on August 20th because I was to be added back into the system at my new place of employment when I had my meeting on August 24th. I contacted my old bosses by phone (I had already moved to the new location on August 1st) to tell them about what happened and I said that it looked like I couldn't continue working at the company. I had no knowledge that I was already removed from the system when I contacted my old boss. So I had "quit" in PA at the transfer site, but I did it over the phone with the store in NYS.

Quote:
I don't even see a finalized transfer, only an approval of the transfer pending the new manager's acceptance of the transfer.
That is entirely possible. But if that was the case I was never informed of that. Why would I have already moved down there if I knew there was any chance of the transfer not going through? The entire point of me transferring was so that I could have a guaranteed income when I did move. I wouldn't have moved if I didn't think I definitely had a job.

Quote:
If you weren't working until 12 am before, then it's substantially less favorable to make you do it now.
This is true. My original availability at the old store was opening (9 or 10am typically) until 10:30pm everyday of the week. When I was talking with the manager of the new store, I said my availability was 9-10am until 6pm everyday of the week (due to the concerns I mentioned in my first post). Had she requested for me to open my availability up to my old availability then I would have complied but instead she demanded that I be available until 12am which I did not do prior to transferring and would have been impossible for me to comply with anyways due to transportation issues.

Last edited by Tajiloh; 05-04-2014 at 02:05 AM..
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