Unemployment Benefit Appeal Hearings and the Importance of Attorney Representation
If you find yourself in a position where you have recently lost your job and have applied for unemployment benefits, it is important to know the law and your rights regarding your benefits. Chapter 612 of the Nevada Revised Statutes governs unemployment benefits. It is important to be familiar with the laws in the event that you find yourself applying for benefits. If you have applied for benefits and been denied, you have the right to appeal the denial. However, it is extremely important to act quickly. Once a determination has been made denying unemployment benefits, you have only 11 days in which to file for an appeal. Once you apply, a hearing is scheduled where you and your employer present evidence and the denial is either affirmed or reversed.
The same is true if you are awarded benefits and your previous employer wishes to fight the decision. The employer has 11 days as well to file for an appeal to reassess your eligibility. If you have been granted benefits and your employer appeals, it is very important take your appeal hearing seriously. Either not showing up to your hearing, or not preparing for your hearing, can result in a reversal of the benefits you were already granted.
In a recent unemployment appeal hearing handled by Gregory & Waldo, the employer appealed the granting of benefits on the 11th day stating that the employee had been fired for misconduct, making him ineligible for unemployment compensation. At this particular hearing, the employer was a very large corporation that was clearly taking advantage of the appeal process as well as our client. Had he not had an attorney representing him his constitutional rights to due process would have been trampled all over by the entire appeal process. The referee of the appeal hearing was going to allow evidence to be used that violated our client’s rights, as well as allow for the large corporation’s blatant disregard for the rules of the hearing. It was incredibly important that this client had an aggressive attorney in his corner who assured that his rights were recognized.
According to NRS Chapter 612, there are certain reasons for becoming unemployed that can potentially make a person ineligible to received unemployment benefits. It is always important when applying for benefits that you are honest and inform the department of the true reason you lost your job, such as misconduct. Even if you disagree that you engaged in misconduct, it is still important that you inform the unemployment department that you were accused of the misconduct. Providing false information to the department in an attempt to receive benefits can amount to felony fraud, and can be punished harshly. However, simply because you report that you were discharged for misconduct, or some other disqualifying act, does not in itself make you ineligible for benefits. You will be given an opportunity to have a phone interview regarding your reason for termination and then a decision will be made. As stated above, once that decision is made, either you or the employer has the right to appeal the decision.
Am unemployment appeal hearing is essentially a mini trial where you get to present your evidence, the employer gets to present its evidence, arguments are made regarding the evidence, and then a decision is made. Not having an experienced attorney with you to represent you at an appeal hearing can be detrimental to your case. It is important to have an attorney who is assuring your rights are being respected and you are not being denied state benefits without due process. It is also important to have someone in your corner because many times you are going against a large corporation and its attorneys.
Gregory & Waldo is a firm that represents employees who are at risk of being denied their unemployment benefits. If you have either been denied benefits, or your employer has appealed your approval of benefits, time is of the essence. You have a small window in which to act to ensure you get the benefits you may be entitled to. If you find yourself in this position, call 702-830-7925 for a free consultation.