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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Employee must resign “for good cause” to qualify for unemployment insurance benefits


Employee must resign “for good cause” to qualify for unemployment insurance benefits
Quintana v NYC Police Department, 297 A.D.2d 857

New York City probationary police officer Miguel A. Quintana, a Bronx resident, was assigned to attend a training program at the police academy in Manhattan. This required Quintana to commute by subway from his home in the Bronx. Quintana said that because he wore his police uniform while traveling to and from the police academy, he became the target of negative comments and gestures from other commuters because of his employment as a police officer.

Claiming that these comments and gestures, together with the fact that a member of the police academy's faculty had attempted suicide, caused him to realize that a career as a police officer "isn't for me...." Quintana resigned from his position.

When Quintana applied for unemployment insurance benefits, the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board ruled that he was disqualified from receiving benefits "because he voluntarily left his employment without good cause."

The Appellate Division, Third Department, affirmed the Board's determination, commenting that there was substantial evidence to support the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board's finding that Quintana was disqualified from receiving unemployment insurance benefits "because the reasons for his resignation were personal and noncompelling."

The court pointed out that although apprehension for one's physical safety may constitute good cause for leaving employment in some instances, the record in this matter does not justify such a conclusion.

In addition, the Appellate Division pointed out that there was no medical evidence supporting Quintana's contention that "job-related stress" compelled him to resign from his position as a probationary police officer.

Handbooks focusing on State and Municipal Public Personnel Law continue to be available for purchase via the links provided below:

The Discipline Book at http://thedisciplinebook.blogspot.com/

A Reasonable Penalty Under The Circumstances at http://nypplarchives.blogspot.com

The Disability Benefits E-book: at http://section207.blogspot.com/

Layoff, Preferred Lists at http://nylayoff.blogspot.com/

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