How can I be denied unemployment in Connecticut?
You could be denied unemployment benefits in CT for various reasons throughout the application process and even during the period that you are supposed to receive benefits. It only takes one mistake to have your unemployment compensation benefits denied in Connecticut, so you must always be careful to meet state requirements before, during and after you apply.
The application process occurs through a series of steps. It begins with the applicant filing a claim (either online or over the phone) and supplying the necessary documents. Next, the applicant must file a weekly claim and attend a hearing. During this time, a written statement or verbal testimony (that occurs during the hearing) is also taken from the applicant's employer to review why the applicant was terminated. You will be denied unemployment benefits if you fail to complete any of the above steps. Furthermore, as a UI petitioner, you must continue to meet the necessary eligibility requirements in order to file your weekly claims after you are accepted into the program. Once again, you will have your unemployment compensation benefits denied if you fail to complete this step as well.
Note: If you begin part-time employment, it is vital that you contact the call center right away. If you omit this information, you can risk having your unemployment compensation benefits denied. However, if you provide the information, you can still be awarded partial benefits.
What do I do if I am a victim of wrongful termination in Connecticut?
If you claim that you are a victim of wrongful termination in Connecticut and you are filing for UI benefits (whether with an initial claim or an appeal for denied benefits), it is your employer’s burden to prove that you were not wrongfully terminated. Instead, your employer must prove that your termination was for one of the following just reasons:
- You committed willful misconduct in the course of your employment.
- You committed workplace misconduct that is considered a felony under Connecticut state law.
- You committed larceny of property or service, with a value that exceeds $25 during the course of your employment.
- You participated in an illegal strike.
- You were sentenced to a term of incarceration of 30 days or longer during your time of employment.
- You were unable to perform your job due to the use of drugs or alcohol (this must be determined through a drug and alcohol testing program, not just by speculation).
If your employer cannot prove that any of the above occurred, then your termination will usually be considered wrongful during the hearing, and your initially denied unemployment benefits application will be accepted.
What should I do if I am denied unemployment in Connecticut?
If you have been denied unemployment benefits in CT, the first step to take is to review your own eligibility. You must take into account the documents that were submitted and the proof of termination that was supplied by your employer. If any of these factors disqualifies you from receiving benefits, and those factors have not changed, it is unlikely you will be approved during an unemployment denial appeal.
However, if the reason you were denied has changed, or you feel that you legally meet all of the requirements to receive unemployment benefits, then start looking into beginning the appeal process.
How do I begin an unemployment denial appeal in Connecticut?
Usually, you will not need the assistance of a lawyer to file an unemployment denial appeal in Connecticut. The important thing to remember is that you must carefully follow the instructions provided to you by the state.
Presenting Your Case in Connecticut
The CT unemployment denial appeals division is separated into two sections, the lower level referee section and the higher level Board of Review. In most cases, your appeal will stay at the referee level. At this level, all parties involved in the denied unemployment claim are provided an opportunity to appear at the hearing, where the facts of the claim are reviewed from the beginning. The referee does not take into account any decision that was made on the original unemployment application, only the information that is provided during the hearing. The referee will then take a recording of the case and submit it, along with his or her written decision regarding whether or not the applicant will be approved or denied unemployment benefits.
In some cases, where unemployment may have been a result of non-work related reasons, your case may need to be submitted to the Board of Review. The referee will be able to assist you with presenting your case. You can, of course, have legal representation for your case if you prefer. Some claimants are also able to receive free or reduced-cost representation, depending on the case.
If Outside Influences Attempt to Keep You From Filing for Unemployment in Connecticut
The decision of whether you are granted or denied unemployment benefits is made solely by the Unemployment Compensation Department or the Appeals Division. You are entitled by law the right to seek out unemployment benefits, and it is illegal for anyone to prevent you from doing so.