nemployment Compensation

Unemployment Compensation

Weinstein Law Firm, LLC fights for employees when an employer challenges the person’s right to receive unemployment compensation benefits. Under Pennsylvania unemployment law, an employee who has been fired will receive unemployment compensation unless the employer can prove the employee engaged in “willful misconduct.” The employer has the burden of proof.

If the employee voluntarily quits, however, then it is the employee who has the burden to prove eligibility for unemployment compensation. The employee would have to show he or she had a “compelling and necessitous” reason for quitting.

For the purposes of unemployment compensation, then, it’s much more advantageous for the employee to be terminated than to quit. This Firm strongly urges employees not to quit their jobs without conferring with counsel. It can be very detrimental to the employees’ legal position.

Normally the unemployment case begins when the state Department of Labor issues a decision based on what it learns from both the employee and former employer. Either side may appeal that decision to a Referee who will then hold a live hearing, with testimony, on the issue of eligibility.

The Referee will then decide whether to affirm or reverse the initial Department of Labor decision. Either side may appeal the Referee’s decision to a Board of Review in Harrisburg, but the odds of getting the Referee reversed are modest. For this reason, it’s wise to confer with counsel before the Referee hearing rather than waiting until after an unfavorable decision is received. Keep in mind that employers do these hearings all the time, yet most employees rarely do. So employers have an advantage. Having counsel at the Referee hearing helps even the playing field.

At Weinstein Law Firm, LLC, we litigate unemployment compensation cases throughout the eastern half of Pennsylvania. We’ve handled Referee hearings from Williamsport to Scranton, down to the Lehigh Valley, Pottsville, and Harrisburg, and in Philadelphia and its suburbs.