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July 24, 2017

Leaving employment without good cause disqualifies a claimant for unemployment insurance benefits


Leaving employment without good cause disqualifies a claimant for unemployment insurance benefits
Matter of Walters (Commissioner of Labor), 2017 NY Slip Op 05497, Appellate Division, Third Department

The Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board [Board] found that an applicant for unemployment insurance benefits [Claimant] was ineligible for such benefits because she had "voluntarily left her employment without good cause."

Claimant appealed but the Appellate Division sustained the Board's ruling finding that its decision was supported by substantial evidence. Claimant had advanced three arguments in pressing her claim for benefits.

Claimant first contended that on her last day of employment she would be late reporting for duty because of a "doctor's appointment" and, after she learned that her supervisor had to cover for her, she quit because she was afraid she was going to be reprimanded or terminated.

Citing Welsh [Commissioner of Labor], 138 AD3d 1328, the Appellate Division noted that "resignation in anticipation of being discharged does not constitute good cause for leaving one's employment."

Claimant had also testified that she also quit her job "because the employer made it difficult for her to schedule medical appointments when the employer was short-staffed."

However Claimant admitted that she was never informed that her job was in jeopardy due to being absent from or late to work.

The Appellate Division, citing McCarthy [Commissioner of Labor], 120 AD3d 876, explained that dissatisfaction with one's work schedule "... does not constitute good cause for leaving one's employment."

As to Claimant's final justification for quitting her job, she testified she had quit "due to stress involving a coworker." Claimant admitted, however, that her supervisor had taken certain actions as a result of her report and had changed her schedule so she did not have to work with the individual in question.

The Appellate Division said that it its view, the Board's decision that Claimant left her employment for personal and non-compelling reasons, was supported by substantial evidence and declined to disturbed it.

The decision is posted on the Internet at:

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