Allessio v Quasarano – 7.34

Allessio v Quasarano
Digest no. 7.34

Section 28(1)(c)

Cite as: Allessio v Quasarano, Macomb Circuit Court, No. 97-1083-AE (August 1, 1997).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Marie Allessio
Employer: Laura Quasarano & Nancy Lucido
Docket no.: B96-10527-142392W
Date of decision: August 1, 1997

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Where claimant testified before the Referee that she would work a maximum of 30 hours per week and this was consistent with her pre-hearing statements that she did not want full-time work, she did not meet the eligibility requirements of the Act.

FACTS: Claimant quit her job because her employer cut her hours. She told the Agency and the Referee she was able to work 20 – 25 hours per week and no more than 30 hours per week. The Referee reversed a disqualification under Section 29(1)(a) but held claimant ineligible because not available for full-time work. When claimant appealed to the Board of Review, she asserted she misunderstood the question regarding availability and that she was available for full time work.

DECISION: Claimant is ineligible for benefits under Section 28(1)(c).

RATIONALE: Claimant consistently made statements she was not available to work full-time. Therefore, the Board of Review was justified in concluding she was ineligible for benefits under Section 28(1)(c).

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 7/99

Koehler v General Motors Corp – 7.29

Koehler v General Motors Corp
Digest no. 7.29

Sections 28(1)(c), 48

Cite as: Koehler v General Motors Corp, Oakland Circuit Court No. 96-532329-AE (May 6, 1997).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Carl Koehler
Employer: General Motors Corporation
Docket no.: B94-10946-134361W and FSC94-00569-134392W
Date of decision: May 6, 1997

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Where a claimant worked full-time for a self-owned business he was not unemployed within the meaning of Section 48 of the MES Act. Moreover, where a claimant is preoccupied with developing his own business, putting in hours equivalent to full-time work, he is not available within the meaning of Section 28(1)(c).

FACTS: The claimant was a part-owner of an irrigation company. While collecting unemployment benefits, the claimant worked for his company in excess of 40 hours per week and received distributions from profits. During this period the claimant sought other work but his efforts were infrequent and indifferent. Claimant did not receive a paycheck from this company but did pay personal expenses out of the business’ account.

DECISION: The claimant was not unemployed within the meaning of Section 48 and was not available within the meaning of Section 28(1)(c). Claimant was properly subject to the penalties for fraud.

RATIONALE: Where the claimant is not ready, willing, able and anxious to resume work in industry, his efforts should be considered startup as opposed to self-help. With respect to availability, the claimant’s indifferent job search efforts established he was not truly attached to the labor market and therefore not available within the meaning of Section 28(1)(c). Claimant’s testimony was inconsistent and self-serving and therefore unreliable. In light of his representations to the Agency that he was not employed and his failure to disclose his connection to or responsibilities with his business, the assessment of penalties and sanctions was correct.

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 7/99

Kloha v. Notebaert Construction & MESC – 18.18

Kloha v. Notebaert Constr. & Michigan Employment Security Commission

Digest no. 18.18

Section 28(1)(c), 54(b)

Cite as: Kloha v. Notebaert Construction & MESC, unpublished opinion of the Bay County Circuit Court, issued May 2, 1997 (Docket No. 96-4031-AE-B).

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Tribunal: Bay County Circuit Court

Appeal Pending: No

Claimant: Alfred H. Kloha

Employer: Notebaert Construction

Docket no. 96-4031-AE-B

Date of decision: May 2, 1997


Holding: In a fraud case the Agency has the burden of proof to establish that claimant knowingly made a false statement or, with intent to defraud, failed to disclose a material fact in order to obtain unemployment benefits. Under the facts of this case the Agency met their burden to establish that claimant committed fraud when he certified that he was “able and available” for work and collected benefits for weeks he was in the hospital recovering from two different surgeries.

Facts: .

Decision: .

Rationale: .

Digest author: Steve Gray

Digest updated: 5/15

Postema v Grand Rapids Diecraft Inc – 7.30

Postema v Grand Rapids Diecraft Inc
Digest no. 7.30

Sections 28, 54(b)

Cite as: Postema v Grand Rapids Diecraft Inc, Ottawa Circuit Court, No. 95-23141-AA (September 19, 1996).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: James Postema
Employer: Grand Rapids Diecraft Inc.
Docket no.: B93-06258-127231W
Date of decision: September 19, 1996

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Where claimant was primarily engaged in establishing his own business, his mental attitude was not one of genuine attachment to the labor market. Where the claimant only sought work via networking with potential customers and other industry contacts, he was not “seeking work” and was not “available to work.”

FACTS: Claimant was laid off from an executive position in February, 1992. He received regular benefits then extended benefits until December 12, 1992. Claimant started his own tool and die business on August 15 as 51% owner. Corporate status was established week of August 9, 1992. During the first week the business grossed $24,000. After that, expenses exceeded profits. Claimant received no wages. For weeks ending August 29, 1992, and September 5, 1992, claimant failed to report self employment. Thereafter, he reported self employment but zero earnings. For week ending September 12, 1992, claimant reported 70+ hours at his business, but thereafter reported only 20 hours. Claimant sought work primarily through “networking” with contacts who were also potential customers. He never actually filled out any job applications.

DECISION: Claimant ineligible for benefits for period August 9, 1992, through December 12, 1992. Claimant must pay restitution and penalties only for some of the weeks in question as for the most part claimant disclosed his interest in self employment and the nature of his job seeking efforts.

RATIONALE: Claimant’s own testimony demonstrated that he was not diligently searching for employment or truly available for work. “His `mental attitude’ was not that of someone attached to the labor market; rather, it was that of an entrepreneur spending his time and energy trying to make his business successful.”

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 7/99

Gallant v W B Doner Co – 7.33

Gallant v W B Doner Co
Digest no. 7.33

Section 28(1)(c)

Cite as: Gallant v W.B. Doner Co., Oakland Circuit Court, No. 94-476350-AE (January 4, 1995).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Jeri Gallant
Employer: W.B. Doner Co.
Docket no.: B92-02016-122380W
Date of decision: January 4, 1995

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Where claimant placed undue restrictions on where she would work and what type of work she would do, she made herself unavailable within the meaning of the statute.

FACTS: Claimant suffers from agoraphobia (fear of being in open or public places) and advised the MESC that there were limitations on where she would seek or accept employment. She was held ineligible due to her failure to establish unrestricted availability. She had a “comfort zone” of locations she was willing to work in and that zone did not include the Detroit metropolitan area. Furthermore, claimant was qualified to do advertising work but was only seeking work in retail because she wanted to make a career change.

DECISION: Claimant is ineligible for benefits under Section 28(1)(c).

RATIONALE: Claimant was desirous of obtaining employment but restricted her availability for certain types of work which she was qualified to perform and restricted the geographical locations to which she was willing to travel. She only wanted to work in communities that were familiar to her. She did not seek advertising work for which she was qualified and limited her job search to certain Detroit suburbs.

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 7/99

Anulli v Easy Cut Tool Corp – 7.32

Anulli v Easy Cut Tool Corp
Digest no. 7.32

Section 28(1)(c)

Cite as: Anulli v Easy Cut Tool Corp., Macomb Circuit Court, No. 89-3688-AE (November 8, 1990).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Ettore Anulli
Employer: Easy Cut Tool Corporation
Docket no.: B87-15460-107554W
Date of decision: November 8, 1990

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Where claimant spent time answering phones and giving quotes for 20 hours a week for a company in which he had substantial investment, and also was unable to show he was seeking work, he did not establish he was available for full time work.

FACTS: Claimant had a 51 percent ownership interest in the involved employer. It was decided to dissolve the business. Claimant filed for benefits. While collecting benefits claimant spent 20 hours per week at Vance, Inc., another business in which he had a substantial investment.

DECISION: Claimant is ineligible under Section 28(1)(c).

RATIONALE: Court cites Dwyer v UCC, 321 Mich 178 (1948). Claimant spent substantial amount of time at Vance, Inc. while drawing benefits, although he wasn’t paid. He also failed to demonstrate that he was seeking work and therefore was unable to show a genuine attachment to labor market.

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 7/99

Schontala v Engine Power Components – 7.31

Schontala v Engine Power Components
Digest no. 7.31

Section 28(1)(c)

Cite as: Schontala v Engine Power Components, Ottawa Circuit Court, No. 86-8221-AE (October 27, 1987).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Timothy Schontala
Employer: Engine Power Components
Docket no.: B85-11974-101743W
Date of decision: October 27, 1987

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: Where claimant asserted he was available for full time work but showed by his actions that, in fact, he was not, he did not meet the availability requirement for eligibility under Section 28(1)(c).

FACTS: After working full time for the employer for over a year, claimant requested reduction to part-time work so he could return to school. Claimant was granted part-time status but shortly thereafter was laid off due to lack of work for part-time employees. Claimant was attending school and placed numerous applications for part-time work. He applied for benefits while still in school when he could not find any part-time work. Claimant asserted that he would accept full-time employment but Referee did not find his testimony credible.

DECISION: Claimant is ineligible for benefits.

RATIONALE: Determination of genuine attachment to the labor market is made by means of a subjective test which looks at the actions of the individual. In this case, claimant quit his full time employment, requested part-time status, enrolled in school nearly full-time, and subsequently applied for part-time work. See test enunciated in Dwyer v UCC, 321 Mich 178, 189 (1948).

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 7/99