How do I win an unemployment appeal?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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How do I win an unemployment appeal?

About 2 weeks after starting a new job, a management company took over. They took me off salary, changed my hours, I couldn’t afford their insurance (which was the whole reason I took that job), I was given responsibilities that I wasn’t qualified for and I was written up for talking to a guest. I hated going in after that. My son is suicidal so I had to be home evenings and weekends with him. How do I handle the appeal for unemployment or am I wasting my time?

Asked on May 29, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Arkansas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You don't indicate whether you were quit or terminated, or, if terminated, why.
If you quit, even for the most logical reasons in the world, you are ineligible for unemployment: when you voluntarily leave employment, you can't get unemployment benefits.  The reasons you state are not ones that justify unemployment when you quit: your employer can change your hours at will, and if it conflicts with non-work responsibilities and you quit for that reason, for example, that is still voluntary separation from employment. Similarly, your employer can change you to hourly, can give you responsibilities you feel unqualified for, or generally change your job past recognition, and since that is all proper and legal--the terms of your job are under your employer's sole control--if you leave employment for those reasons, is a voluntary separation that disqualifies you for employment. 
Or if you were fired for cause, such as absenteeism--e.g. missing scheduled hours--that is also a disqualified for unemployment: you are eligible for unemployment only when laid off or terminated *not* for cause.
You win the appeal by showing that you were terminated (not quit or resigned) not for cause--but will have to be able to factually support or back that up.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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