Wednesday, December 02, 2015

UC - voluntary quit - discharge not imminent

Line v. UCBR – Cmwlth. Court – November 25, 2015 – unreported* memorandum decision



Benefits denied since claimant quit without discharge being imminent, only a future possibility if he did not perform his job properly.


Where a claimant resigns in order to avoid an imminent discharge, the Board may properly treat the claimant’s separation from employment as a discharge and analyze the claimant’s eligibility for unemployment benefits under section 402(e) of the Law, 43 P.S. §802(e). Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 648 A.2d 124, 126 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1994).


However, a claimant who resigns under circumstances indicating only a possibility of a discharge is considered to have voluntarily resigned. Id. Whether a claimant was discharged or voluntarily resigned is a question of law to be determined based on the facts found by the Board. Key v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 687 A.2d 409, 412 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1996). The claimant bears the burden of proving that the separation was a discharge and not a voluntary resignation. Id.

In this case, the facts as found by the Board are similar to those before the Court in Fishel v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 674 A.2d 770 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1996), and Rizzitano v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 377 A.2d 1060 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1977).


*An unreported case may not be cited “binding precedent” but can be cited “for its persuasive value. . . .”  See 210 Pa. Code § 69.414 (a) and Pa. R.A.P.  3716 [45 Pa.B. 3975; Saturday, July 25, 2015]

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