Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Should I Hire a Lawyer for My Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation Referee Hearing??

Should I Act Pro Se at My Pennsylvania Unemployment Hearing 
Unemployment Hearings
 Crucial and Scary

If you represented yourself at your Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation Hearing, you were acting "pro se," i.e. "for oneself."

Many people believe that acting pro se will send a message to the Referee that they could not afford an attorney, and therefore could really, really use the unemployment benefits.

Trust me, the Referee's understand that everyone seeking unemployment compensation wants to win, and needs to win. But, the Referee will be guided by the evidence and the law, not sympathy.

Representing yourself is rarely a good idea, as I discuss below.

Am I Allowed to Have a Lawyer Represent Me at My Pennsylvania Unemployment Hearing?

Yes, you are.  And, since the rules of evidence and principles of stare decisis (i.e. precedent must be followed by the Referees) control Pennsylvania Unemployment hearings, it is a real good idea to consider hiring an attorney for the Hearing.

Check out John's Video on Pennsylvania Willful Misconduct Unemployment Hearings:

Will the Unemployment Referee Be Upset or Angry If I Bring an Attorney to My Pennsylvania Unemployment Hearing?

Referees Want to Keep Their Whistles
in Their Pockets
No, in fact many of them are glad to see an attorney at the Hearing.

These Hearings are (supposed to be) short, concise and governed by certain laws and procedures. In addition, they also have the capacity to be highly confrontational, since the Employer and the former employee are well-acquainted and the evidence is sometimes, well, not polite.  Referees may have 5-8 Hearings to conduct in any given day.

Lawyers who handle these Hearings on a regular basis know the rules and laws, so they help insure that the Hearing proceeds in an orderly fashion - i.e. lawyers know it is a bad idea - on many levels - to introduce irrelevant evidence into a legal proceeding.

In addition, any smart lawyer knows that arguing with the other side or fighting with the Referee is a bad idea - so a good lawyer helps keep the Hearings civil.

Quick and civil Hearings - that is what Referees want, and that is what a quality attorney helps insure will transpire.

Here is John's Video on "Voluntary Quit" Pennsylvania Unemployment Hearings:

The Court Jester
A Person Who Represents Himself/Herself Has a Fool for a Lawyer 

I am not sure I agree entirely with that proposition.  But I will say this:  You only get one Unemployment Hearing in Pennsylvania. The Hearings are governed by somewhat intricate rules of procedure, evidence and legal principles.

Unemployment Benefits can be sustaining until you find a new job.  Investing in an attorney is the best way to maximize your chance of wining your Unemployment Hearing - of that I have no doubt.

                                               Philadelphia Unemployment Lawyer

John A. Gallagher, Esquire - Since 1991
John A. Gallagher is an employment lawyer who represents employees in Pennsylvania.  

John typically represents employees who need an employment lawyer in Philadelphia County, Chester County, Delaware County, Bucks County, Berks County, Lancaster County and Montgomery County.

Pennsylvania Employment Attorney Provides Free Telephone Consultations

If you are looking for an employment lawyer, and live in Malvern, Wayne, King of Prussia, Downingtown, Glenside, Doylestown, Radnor, Newtown Square, Exton, Philadelphia, West Chester, Skippack, Langhorne, Haverford, Nether Providence, Broomall, Drexel Hill, Reading or any of their surrounding towns, feel free to send me an e-mail or give me a call.  I am always glad to spend some time with people via a free telephone consultation.

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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

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