Individual whose new employer rescinded the offer of employment for good cause disqualified for Unemployment Insurance benefits under the circumstances
2013 NY Slip Op 03735, Appellate Division, Third Department
A public employee [Claimant] delivered his letter of resignation to the appointing authority indicating that he had been offered, and had accepted, a position at another facility.
Subsequently Claimant drove a motor vehicle after he had taken prescription medication and was arrested for “driving while ability impaired.” When his prospective employer learned of his arrest, it withdrew its offer of employment and Claimant’s former employer would not allow him to withdraw or retract his resignation.*
The Department of Labor initially disqualified Claimant from receiving unemployment insurance benefits, finding that he voluntarily left his employment without good cause.
Claimant appealed and after a hearing, an Administrative Law Judge overruled this determination. The Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board reversed the Administrative Law Judge’s decision and Claimant appealed the Board’s ruling.
The Appellate Division affirm the Board’s decision, explaining "A claimant's conduct . . . with regard to accepting a new position is a critical element in determining whether separation from employment was for good cause."
In this instance, said the court, Claimant had a valid offer of employment at the time he tendered his resignation but he lost this offer through his own poor judgment in driving a motor vehicle after taking prescription medication.
Under these circumstances, said the court, substantial evidence supports the Board's finding that good cause did not exist for Claimant's voluntary departure from employment and that he was disqualified from receiving benefits and it found
* Given that Claimant worked in the field of substance abuse prevention, the Appellate Division said that his former employer was justified in refusing to allow Claimant to rescind his resignation.
The decision is posted on the Internet at:http://www.nycourts.gov/reporter/3dseries/2013/2013_03735.htm