Jones v Hackley Hospital – 12.14

Jones v Hackley Hospital
Digest no. 12.14

Section 29(1)(b)

Cite as: Jones v Hackley Hosp, unpublished opinion of the Muskegon Circuit Court, issued  October 2, 1984 (Docket No. 83-17596 AE).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Willie Jones, Jr.
Employer: Hackley Hospital
Docket no.: B82 13563 RO1 86935W
Date of decision: October 2, 1984

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Inability to get to work because of involuntary incarceration does not constitute wilful or wanton misconduct connected with the work.

FACTS: The claimant worked for the employer as a janitor. He was discharged after being absent for three consecutive days without notice to the employer. The claimant was under the constraints of a work release program from the County Jail. His work release privileges were revoked as a result of a complaint filed by his wife. The revocation of the work release privileges prevented the claimant from reporting to work.

DECISION: The claimant is not disqualified for misconduct discharge.

RATIONALE: “To hold that plaintiff’s [claimant’s] involuntary incarceration constituted misconduct connected with his employment would result in this court agreeing that wilfulness was present, where subject was held against his will, an interesting but illogical proposition. It is only reasonable to conclude that the word ‘connected’ as used in the legislative act, was intended to make a distinction between misconduct with reference to an individual’s private life and misconduct arising during and related to his employment.”

The claimant lost his work release privileges under circumstances which might have been completely beyond his control. “The reason behind the revocation of his work release did not have the slightest connection with his employment.”

Digest Author:  Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 6/91