UC- vol. quit - voluntary retirement
Degosky v. UCBR - Cmwlth. Court - December 4, 2008 - unreported memorandum decision
Subjective, unsubstantiated fear of a layoff, plus offer of voluntary retirement package did not establish good cause to quit a job. In Staub v. UCBR, 673 A.2d 434, 437 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1996), the court held that speculation pertaining to an employer’s financial condition and future layoffs, however disconcerting, does not establish the requisite necessitous and compelling cause. Instead, the relevant inquiry is whether surrounding circumstances at the time an employee voluntarily leaves indicate a likelihood that fears about his or her job security will otherwise materialize, that serious impending threats to the employee’s job will be realized and that the employee’s belief that his job is imminently threatened is well founded. Moreover, while the fact that an employer has made an offer of retirement or other incentive package is important, it is not dispositive of the issue. There must be some additional circumstances existing at the time the employee accepts the offer, e.g., a lack of suitable continuing work, either currently or at a discernible point in time, together with statements or actions of the employer showing a likelihood of imminent layoff.
Here, Claimant's fear of loss of his job was "only a subjectively perceived possibility." He was "never informed that his job was in imminent danger and his supervisors informed him only that they did not know the status of his job, and further, there was evidence that continuing work was available to him. Other than his speculation that his job was in imminent danger because some of his work had been moved to Texas, there is no evidence that would prove that his concerns would be realized.