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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 112630
Experience:  20+ Years of Employment Law Experience
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I was recently dicharged because I had two vehicle accidents

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I was recently dicharged because I had two vehicle accidents while driving for my job. One was my fault the other wasn't. To be clear I wasn't let go because of the accident but that I was not allowed to drive for at least one year. I was discharged because the was not any other non driviing positions available. When I applied for NYS Unemployment I put on the application that I was let go because of lack of work. Now NYS has a hold on my benefits because my employer is stating just that I was discharged. Is this a major problem, or just Nys needing a clarification on why I was let go?
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

I am sorry to hear of your termination. I am afraid that if you were not able to drive for 1 year because of the accidents and the employer had no non-driving positions available, the discharge from employment was through your own fault because you could not drive because of your accidents (even though one might not have been your fault). It is a major issue in NYS because in order to be eligible for unemployment, you must have been terminated through no fault at all of your own and because there was at least one fault accident, they have the argument that the termination was based on your own fault. You will need to clarify on the application that the employer simply had no positions available for you to work, but if you put that you needed the other position because you could not drive for 1 year due to the two accidents, then unemployment will find that the termination was through your own fault. You can appeal the denial of benefits and prove that you should not have been forbidden to drive for a year because one of the two accidents was not your fault and should not have been held against you, but this would have to be done in an unemployment appeal hearing with you using a local unemployment law attorney to represent you and then it would be up to the hearing officer to determine if you should have been prevented from driving for 1 year or not and if they find you should not have been, then they will find the termination was through no fault of your own and award benefits.



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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Well that's not good. Is it really necessary to hire an attorney to fight this? Really don't have the funds for that. And I suppose it takes forever to go through the appeals process.

Thank you for your response.

Unfortunately, and I wish this was not the case, I simply report information on the status of the laws and do not make the laws up. What people do not understand about unemployment law attorneys is they do not usually take any money up front, they work off a small percentage of the benefits they win for their client (usually 20% or 25%). An attorney in an unemployment appeal such as this one significantly increases your chances of success since there are legal arguments that need to be made regarding the need to have stopped you from driving for a year at least. The appeals process itself can take about 30-60 days, but they usually move it as fast as they can because they know people are out of work and need to receive benefits if eligible.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ok thank you. I am am placing a call to HR this morning to hopefully clear this up. I do have some job offers but I'm defiantly going th o appeal this in case I need benefits in the future.

Thank you for your response. You need to do whatever you can to clear up the matter to try to avoid the denial of benefits, but if they do deny benefits you really should pursue your appeal.

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