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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
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Experience:  Significant experience in all areas of employment law.
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Hi, I live in California and was terminated because I failed

Resolved Question:

Hi, I live in California and was terminated because I failed clock out for lunch too many times before my fifth hour. I went into "Compliance". Our company says that you must go to lunch before your fifth hour. I have worked at this company since 1998, will I be eligible for unemployment, and for how long?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  Patrick, Esq. replied 5 years ago.
Hello and thank you for entrusting me to answer your question. I am so sorry to hear that you were terminated under these circumstances.

An individual will typically be eligible to receive benefits provided that they have received enough wages during the base period to establish a claim (either $1300 in one quarter of their "base period," or at least $900 in their highest quarter and total base period earnings of 1.25 times their high quarter earnings), they are physically able and available to immediately accept work, actively seeking work, and unemployed through no fault of their own.

What would be at issue in your circumstance is whether you are unemployed "through no fault of your own." Typically, you will only be disqualified if your actions qualified as "willful misconduct." The term 'willful' has been defined by the California courts as follows:

"To do a thing with deliberation is to do it after consideration and reflection, and if after indulging in this mental process, the act is done as a result thereof, it is willful."

Willful misconduct typically includes such things as stealing from your company, yelling at customers, or showing up to work drunk. If the mistakes you made in clocking out on time were not intentional or designed to somehow harm the employer, they likely will not qualify as "willful misconduct," and you should still be eligible to receive benefits.

I sincerely XXXXX XXXXX this information helps you and I wish you the very best of luck. Bear in mind that none of the above constitutes legal advice nor is any attorney client relationship created between us.

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