Thursday, June 5, 2014

How Do I Prove I Had a Necessitous and Compelling Reason To Quit My Job in a Pittsburgh Unemployment Referee Hearing?

Have a Rule 402(h) Unemployment Referee Hearing in Oil City, Pittsburgh, Erie, Johnstown, McKeesport or Washington, PA?  Need a Referral to an Attorney to Help With Your Pennsylvania Unemployment Hearing?

Over the years, and thanks to the power of the Internet (and my relative obsession with Blogging on Pennsylvania Unemployment Law), I have received many calls from people located in the western half of Pennsylvania, seeking a referral to an experienced unemployment lawyer who can handle cases out that way.

So, I called some retired Referees, spoke to some lawyers who represented companies and interviewed some candidates.  I settled on an excellent firm that regularly handles Unemployment Hearings in all points west of the Susquehanna.

Call me (610-647-5027) or complete our Contact form, and I will put you in charge with my doppelg√§nger right away.

Can I Quit My Job and Get Unemployment in Pittsburgh or Harrisburg?  Am I Eligible for Unemployment Compensation in Pennsylvania if I Resign from my Job?

 In certain situations, you are.  You may find my recent video helpful; in it, I discuss the most common scenarios under which a person who quits their job can get unemployment in Pennsylvania:



If You Have to Quit Work to Follow Your Spouse, You Can Get Unemployment in Pennsylvania. You May Also Eligible for Unemployment in Pennsylvania if You Resign Because Your Employer Lowered Your Pay, Altered Your Schedule or Changed Your Work Location

Here are the most common situations where someone who voluntarily quits his/her job qualifies for Unemployment Compensation Benefits in Pennsylvania:

1)  A substantial reduction in rate of pay (THINK: >20%)

2)  A significant change in work hours.  (THINK:  Change from day shift to overnight shift, reduction in hours from 40 per week to 20, change in schedule from no weekends to every weekend, etc.)

3)  A radical change in work location or job duties.  (THINK: Work site relocation of >30 miles, work site change where no public transit available (if you use public transit), change from job with no manual labor to labor intensive position, etc.).

4) If your spouse is required to relocate because of his/her job, or military commitment, and you can prove that you cannot afford to maintain two households, you can quit and get unemployment.

The Devil Made Me Do It
I am Being Mistreated at Work.  Can I Quit My Job if it is a Hostile Work Environment and I am Being Bullied at Work?  Under Pennsylvania Law, You May be Eligible for Unemployment if You Quit Work Because You Are Being Treated Badly

Perhaps the most common calls I receive are those from folks who want to quit because their boss is a jerk. If the mistreatment is truly pervasive and extraordinary, you alert the company to the situation before you quit and give it a chance to fix the situation and it fails to remedy the problems, you may be eligible for unemployment if you thereafter quit.

These are extremely difficult cases to win and, in my view, the average person has little chance of winning such a claim unless they consult with counsel before they quit, and have representation at the hearing.

What Happens at a 402(h) Unemployment Referee Hearing in Erie County, Beaver County, Centre County, Fayette County or Franklin County, Pennsylvania?  

The below video provides a simple overview of what happens at a Pennsylvania unemployment hearing. Take a look and see if it is helpful!



In a voluntary quit case, the burden is on the employee to prove that he/she had a necessitous and compelling
reason to quit the job.  That means you have to present your evidence first.  Because of this, the employer does not even need to show up at the Hearing (and they sometimes don't).  After you present your case, the Referee will examine you - and they know the law.  Then, if the company is there, they will cross-examine you.

Moreover, the Pennsylvania courts have very carefully defined the law in quit cases; if you do not fit into one of a number of small boxes, and your ability to do so is dependent upon your ability to introduce just the right evidence,  you will not win a quit case.

For these and other reasons, quit cases are very, very tricky, and much harder to win then willful misconduct cases. That is why hiring a highly-qualified and skilled Unemployment lawyer to help you at the Hearing is a real good idea.

Philadelphia Unemployment Attorney

The Obsessive One - in Paoli, PA


John A. Gallagher is an employment lawyer who represents employees in Pennsylvania.

Click Here if you have questions about any aspect of employment law, from wrongful termination, to wage and overtime claims, to discrimination and retaliation laws, to Family and Medical Leave…

Click Here if you have questions about any aspect of Pennsylvania Unemployment Law, from willful misconduct, to voluntary quit, to Referee Hearings, to severance issues…

Click Here to e-mail John directly.

Thanks for checking in with us, and best of luck if we do not hear from you.

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