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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 92810
Experience:  20+ Years of Employment Law Experience
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I was hired to work for a employer and was to start training

Customer Question

I was hired to work for a employer and was to start training on July 10, 2013 When I got there I just sat and watched and then I was told to go with a driver (I was hired as a CDL) driver) and train. It was very hot that day 90 degress and he had no A.C. in the scortching hot van, so after sitting there and getting bit by mosqitios due to the windows being down I told him I was leaving due to being allergic to bug bites. So they sent me a a check for 3hrs but i told them not to send it to me. I cashed it and know I am having a problem with unemployment getting my benefits check. So the man who hired me said" I dont think its going to work out cause u should have talked to me about this and I hired you because of your great resume, but know things have changed. So why cant I still receive my unemployment checks, I didn't quit the employer told me to leave.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  TexLaw replied 1 year ago.
Hi,

Thank you for your question. I'm sorry to hear about this situation.

Unemployment is not available to an employee who voluntarily terminates his unemployment or who is terminated for cause by his employer. In your situation, you left work without first obtaining permission from your boss, so they told you not to come back because they are firing you for cause. This means that you are not eligible for unemployment unfortunately.

Unemployment is only available when you are laid off, or you quit your job because of an illegal situation going on at the job.

Please let me know if you have any further questions. Please also kindly consider rating my answer positively so that I am compensated by the website for my work on your question. Rating positively does not cause an additional charge and does not prevent us from further discussing your questions.

Best Regards,
ZDN
TexLaw, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 4270
Experience: Contracts, Wrongful termination and discrimination
TexLaw and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for your response but that was the boss who told me to leave. He told me to come in and talk to him and i did so he told me. I live in New Jersey and you can only get unemployment if you getlaid off, job separation, or get fired and if you get fired it can not be do to theift, stealing illegal issues etc...They only penalize you 6 weeks for getting fired so do you think that they will still give it to me and just penalize me only?.

Expert:  TexLaw replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.

I do not believe that you are eligible for unemployment benefits in New Jersey because it appears that you were filed for cause. I am not aware of any allowance for being fired for cause which will allow you to still claim benefits.

I'm going to opt out to allow another expert to come along and give you a second opinion.

Good Luck,
ZDN
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Ok thanks, XXXXX XXXXX

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. Your previous expert has opted out and I am a different contributor here looking forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

In NJ, misconduct terminations are broken down to three types of misconduct: simple misconduct, severe misconduct and gross misconduct.

 

Simple misconduct is defined as improper, intentional, connected with one’s work, malicious and within the applicant’s control and is either a deliberate violation of his or her employer’s rules or a disregard to standards of behavior that the employer has the right to expect of the applicant. An unintentional, inadvertent or negligent act that does not amount to a wanton disregard of the consequences is not misconduct under New Jersey unemployment benefits laws. A simple misconduct disqualification will prevent an applicant from receiving unemployment benefits for the week of the termination and the subsequent seven weeks. Once this disqualification period ends, the applicant becomes eligible to collect unemployment benefits. Your leaving work without permission is likely to be at the most considered under simple misconduct.

 

If your reason for termination is deemed to be severe misconduct you will be disqualified from receiving unemployment benefits until you work in new employment for at least four weeks earns at least six times their weekly benefit amount and becomes separated from the new employment through no fault of their own. The New Jersey unemployment law does not define specifically what constitutes severe misconduct, but merely provides examples which include repeated violations of an employer's rule or policy, repeated lateness or absences after the applicant receives a written warning from their employer, falsification of records, physical assault or threats that do not constitute gross misconduct, misuse of benefits or sick time, abuse of leave, theft of company property, excessive use of drugs/alcohol on the job, theft of time, or where the behavior is malicious and deliberate but is not considered gross misconduct.

 

In the order to consider your termination for Gross Misconduct, which it is highly unlikely it would be, your employer has to show the termination was the result of the applicant committing a crime of the first, second, third or fourth degree under the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice. A termination for gross misconduct will disqualify an applicant from receiving unemployment benefits until he she returns to work for at least eight weeks, earns ten times their weekly benefit rate, and becomes unemployed through no fault of their own.

 

However, with the explanations of misconduct above, it does not appear your leaving constituted anything more than simple misconduct at the worst. I would argue though that you voluntarily left the employment with good cause because the terms and conditions of employment without AC in unbearable heat and bug bites would be considered intolerable to the reasonable employee and under NJ law good cause voluntary leaving of employment is considered sufficient to award benefits without penalty.


Thus, I would suggest you file an official written appeal to unemployment and present your case you left because of the intolerable conditions and as such benefits should be awarded. However, at the very worst if they find simple misconduct you would lose the one week of benefits for when you left and then 7 more weeks before your benefits would start.




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Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 92810
Experience: 20+ Years of Employment Law Experience
Law Educator, Esq. and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your response. The information you are given me is what I needed for New Jersey! I was only there for 5 hrs as I couldn't take it any more with the bites and the heat.

I didn't think I fell in the misconduct category either and I hope unemployment will consider my circumstances. I pray they see things without penalty. If not I will have to fight for my cause, I really need my benefits as a single Mother and actively looking for work each and every day but not in those conditions. Thank you so much for all your help! :)

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you very much.

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Law Educator, Esq.
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