November 16, 2021

Per diem substitute teacher eligible to receive unemployment insurance benefits despite the school district's claim that she had not worked "the required 20 days as a substitute teacher"

A claimant [Claimant] for unemployment insurance benefits worked as a per diem substitute teacher for the City School District of the City of New York [NYCSD] during the 2017-2018 school year. She was paid only for the days she worked.

Claimant worked a total of 18 days during that school year, often declining per diem assignments due to conflicts with her other part-time job and other reasons. She last worked on June 25, 2018, the final day of school. On July 16, 2018, NYCSD advised Claimant that she was ineligible to serve as a substitute teacher in the 2018-2019 school year as she had not worked the required 20 days as a substitute teacher in the prior school year.

The Department of Labor determined that Claimant was eligible to receive benefits. NYCSD appealed, contending that Claimant "had provoked her discharge for failing to complete the required 20 days of per diem work."

After a hearing, an Administrative Law Judge and, thereafter, the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board, affirmed the Labor Department's initial determination, finding that, as a per diem employee, Claimant's employment relationship with the school district ended on her last day of work, June 25, 2018. As such, Claimant did not have an employment relationship with at the time that she applied for benefits and thus could not be found to have provoked her discharge or voluntarily quit.

NYCSD appealed the Board's determination but the Appellate Division sustained the Board's ruling, explaining that as there is substantial evidence supporting the Board's determination, it must be affirmed.

The narrow issue presented was whether the Board correctly determined that Claimant, a per diem employee who was last employed by NYCSD on June 25, 2018, did not thereafter cause her discharge or voluntarily quit by not pursuing avenues to renew her per diem eligibility nor did NYCSD establish that it was compelled to discontinue Claimant's status as a per diemteacher on that basis.

Accordingly, the Appellate Division found that Claimant was entitled to the unemployment insurance benefits awarded to her by the Labor Department and that the wages paid to her by NYCSD can be used to establish a future claim for benefits.

Click HEREto access the Appellate Division's ruling.

CAUTION

Subsequent court and administrative rulings, or changes to laws, rules and regulations may have modified or clarified or vacated or reversed the decisions summarized here. Accordingly, these summaries should be Shepardized® or otherwise checked to make certain that the most recent information is being considered by the reader.
THE MATERIAL ON THIS WEBSITE IS FOR INFORMATION ONLY. AGAIN, CHANGES IN LAWS, RULES, REGULATIONS AND NEW COURT AND ADMINISTRATIVE DECISIONS MAY AFFECT THE ACCURACY OF THE INFORMATION PROVIDED IN THIS LAWBLOG. THE MATERIAL PRESENTED IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE AND THE USE OF ANY MATERIAL POSTED ON THIS WEBSITE DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP.
Consistent with the Declaration of Principles jointly adopted by a Committee of the American Bar Association and a Committee of Publishers and Associations, the material in this blog is presented with the understanding that neither the publisher nor members of the staff are providing legal advice to the reader and in the event legal or other expert assistance is needed, the reader is advised to seek such advice from a competent professional.