Thursday, September 18, 2008

UC - willful misconduct - conscious disregard

Patterson v. UCBR - Commonwealth Court - September 12, 2008 - unreported memorandum opinion

Housekeeper not guilty of willful misconduct because employer did not show willful/intentional violation of his job duties, only that his performance fell below employer standards.

The court relied on Rung v. UCBR, 689 A.2d 999 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1997), holding that there must be any intentional disregard of the employer's interests, and BK Foods v. UCBR, 547 A.2d 873 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1988), holding that there is a differenence between "mere incompetence, inexperience or inability" and a "conscious disregard of the employer's interest." McCrea v. UCBR, 487 A.2d 69 (Pa. Cmwlth 1986).

There was no showing here of conscious disregard or unwillingness to to work to the best of his ability. Even under the Board's own findings, the most that was shown was a possible mistake about work assignments.

There was a dissent, stating the evidence showed that claimant knew what was he was supposed to do but didn't do it.