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  • New Mexico Unemployment Law

    I was just wondering if there is anyone here that can tell me a little bit more about New Mexico Unemployment law. I am wondering because I was fired from my previous employer (deleted) which is a nationally recognized trucking company and in which I served as an Over the Road truck driver.

    When the fired me the company said that it was for safety and performance and now they are fighting my unemployment and I am concerned as to what is going to happen. I have my father assisting me with this case as he is an attorney in Massachussetts. He is familiar with the case and he has been on one unemployment telephone hearing already with me, but at the moment I am not convinced that the judge is being fair and impartial and at the moment I am starting to think that maybe my previous employer has poisoned the judge against me.

    Perhaps I am doing something wrong and perhaps I am just not presenting my case as effectively as I should or could be doing and I was hoping that maybe there might be someone out there that can help me to figure out how to present my case a lot better and as how to increase my odds of wining this case in my favor.

    Since this case involves Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations as well as employment and unemployment law I will need someone that is knowledgable in those areas as the judge is now bringing up the topic of the FMCSR.


    I would appreciate it there is anyone out there that can help me to figure this out a lot better so that I can move past this and on to bigger and better things.
    Last edited by cbg; 04-03-2008, 02:47 PM.

  • #2
    It's not clear if you are asking for information about how unemployment works, or if you are asking for an attorney to take your case.

    The first is fine, although it would be easier to answer your question if you could tell us what you did that your employer thought was a safety issue.

    If you are asking for an attorney to take your case, reputable attorneys do not troll message boards looking for clients, and the rules of the board prohibit the referral of specific attorneys.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

    Comment


    • #3
      I am not looking for an attorney to represent me as I have Pre-paid lega and my father is an attorney, but what I am looking for is someone that can help to give me advice and to help me reformulate things so that I can present my case better to the umeployment law judge and so that I can increase my chances of winning this case.

      Unfortunately because my previous employer is a trucking company since my job was that of a truck driver we are both bound by the rules and regulations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and that topic has recently come up in court.


      Originally posted by cbg View Post
      It's not clear if you are asking for information about how unemployment works, or if you are asking for an attorney to take your case.

      The first is fine, although it would be easier to answer your question if you could tell us what you did that your employer thought was a safety issue.

      If you are asking for an attorney to take your case, reputable attorneys do not troll message boards looking for clients, and the rules of the board prohibit the referral of specific attorneys.

      Comment


      • #4
        Still can't help you if you don't share what rule or safety protocol was violated or why you feel it either does or does not apply.
        I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

        Comment


        • #5
          I understand and I will get that in ASAP. I'm in the process of sending the FMCSR and the employee handbook to both my father and to the unemployment law judge as they are both requesting it.

          The company said that I was terminated for safety and performance and now they are claiming that I was negligent on the job due to three safety inspections in which the DOT did. One happened in California in which I was pulled over and given a citation for having a license plate light go out, another was an inspection that occured in Oregon due to a flat tire on the tractor. All the DOT did in that situation was to just have me call maintence and get it fixed before I could leave the weigh station. Another occured in Texas in which the DOT inspected my truck, but I do not believe that any citations were issued.

          The company is claiming that I committed Misconduct due to citations and violations, but as I have already pointed out that there is no way that a driver can predict as when or if the DOT will inspect them or as to whether or not any kind of mechanical issue will occur at any time. All that a driver can do is to do his or her pre-trips and post trips as required by the FMCSR.

          I have still yet to argue the point that the company has a legal obligation to inspect, maintain and repair all vehicles within it's control as required by section 396.3 of the FMCSR regulations.

          The company is also trying to hold a minor accident against me that I had in Tennessee in which I ended up backing into a parked pickup truck causing nothing more than a few scrapes to the back bumper and maybe a cracked tail light. I took pictures of the scene and I tried to prevent the accident in the first place by getting out of the truck each and every time to inspect what was behind me prior to backing, but despite my best efforts I ended up hitting the pickup truck. The police were called and I was given a citation for unlawful drive through. I submitted that ticket to the company for payment and the company paid it.

          After the accident occured I reported it to my employer right away and I tried to find out how to send the pictures to them, but they never responded. I tried to explain things to the officer, but he would not listen. He asked me for my New Mexico driver's license at the time and I provided that to him, but he had problems with the New Mexico database at the time as it was not responding. He asked me if I had any previous licenses from any other states and I happily gave him my Minnesota drivers license information in which I had stored on my notebook computer.

          The company is also saying that I falsified my logbooks, but that is just simply not true as everytime that I discovered any problems with my logs I would immediately sit down and recreate the log just as the company policy stated that I should do.

          I have even had problems with them losing my logs and even a bill of lading causing me to resubmit that information to them multiple times.

          Now they are trying to get me on a speeding ticket and an out out lane ticket that I got in California in October 2007 on the same day while I as in the grapevine. I have submitted those tickets to a company called American Truckers Legal Association so that they could represent me in court, but at the time of the discharge from me previous employer those tickets were still pending within the california court system.

          I'm not sure as to what has happened with the out of lane case as I have not heard anything as of yet relating to that case, but apparently American Truckers Legal Association dropped the ball and did not handle the speed case as they were supposed to and now according to a letter that I recently received from the State of California my drivers license could be suspend as of April 27 unless I get that resolved and quickly.

          One thing that really bother's me with this company is that on numerous occasions I asked my dispatcher questions, but rarely received a response.

          I have even had them give me a service failure because I told them that I could run a load legally from Boise Idaho to Pullman, Washington as I was already out of my 11 hour drive time and the company wanted the load to be in pullman, Washington by 8 or 9 AM the next morning. There is now way that I could have done that load legally and they knew that, but yet still gave me a service failure for it. I was not even planned on the load. Only a pre-plan was done on it so I should not have received a service failure and they should have respected the fact that I could not do that load legally without punishing me for it by giving me a service failure.

          Their action in that case is a direct violation of FMCSR rule 395.3, 390.11, 390.13.

          Originally posted by ElleMD View Post
          Still can't help you if you don't share what rule or safety protocol was violated or why you feel it either does or does not apply.

          Comment


          • #6
            You have been cited 3 times in 3 states, had an accident you were at fault for, gotten 2 other moving violations and are facing a suspended license and you wonder why you were terminated??? No employer with half a mind would allow you to continue driving a commercial vehicle with a record like that. All the excuses in the world aren't going to change that fact that all of these things happened to you. the fact that they may have written you up one time for something that would have been a violation isn't going to save you from your driving record. The company may be ultimately responsible for making sure that their trucks are in compliance but they absolutely can hold you responsible for ensuring that it is properly maintained on the road. Even that won't get around the accident and moving violations. It certainly won't get you around the fact that you are facing a suspended license!

            It is no one else's fault for not getting you off the hook with the tickets, or for your accident or the safety citations. It may be bad luck but it is a huge liability and if you lost your license, then it would be illegal to continue to employ you as a driver. Your chances of getting UC are iffy at best from my experience with similar claims in MD and my state is very employee friendly when it comes to granting UI

            I doubt your employer is poisoning the judge against you. More than likely it is your attitude about this which is that none of it is your fault. Judges listen to excuses and "its not my fault" all day long and it gets old. Passing off hitting another vehicle as minor even though you did so as the result of an illegal act, blaming someone else for not getting you out of your tickets, the company for not correcting problems with the truck when they were several states away and you hadn't reported anything wrong for them to fix, etc. does not paint you in a very positive light. If it were just one or two of these things, you could call it bad luck and pass it off as not your fault. Put all of them together and it starts to look more like you are just not willing to take responsibility for your actions. Whether it is true or not, that is how it comes across. Taking responsibility for your actions is not the same as willful misconduct.
            I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

            Comment


            • #7
              You need to stop and think about this for a minute and use some God given common sense.

              No one can determine or say that once you are in a vehicle of any sort that you can not experience a mechanical failure. That is just good old common sense. You can maintain and inspect a vehicle as much as you want, but there are no guarantees that you will not have a light go out or a tire blow out and that issue is only exacerbated by the fact that when you are out on the road as a truck driver you are not going to know about it until you stop unless it is a severe problem like a tire shredding and leaving bits and pieces all over the highway that you can see.

              That is not to mention that you are in a Federally regulated business and you are subject to DOT inspections at any time and during those inpsections the DOT does have the right to issue you a violation for anything that they may find and I have even heard of DOT officers creating violations, just for their benefit.

              The accident was very minor with nothing more than a few minor scratches to the bumper of the pickup and maybe a cracked tail light. I was driving an 18 wheeler semi truck and there are many blind spots on any truck that size and that is an undisputable fact. I knew that and I took every safety precaution that I could to ensure that an accident would not happen, but often times when you are backing an 18 wheeler the trailers tend to develop minds of their own and it takes a lot of manuvering to try to get them safely in and that is a fact.

              The California tickets were still pending in court at the time of discharge from my employer and as a result I was not convicted of anything at that time.

              The discharge took place in December of 2007. The court date for the speed case was scheduled for Janurary and I had hired an attorney to represent me on that case and on the out of lane case, but they dropped the ball, at least on the speed case and that is why I just got the notice about the license suspension occuring in April.

              It's obvious to me that you do not know a thing about the trucking industry or about the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations or you would not be talking this way to me and you would be understanding this issue a lot better.

              What do you think that I should have done when they told me to run a load that I knew I could not legally do due to the FMCSR regulations?

              The maximum drive time for any truck driver is 11 hours and I had used them comming from Seattle to Caldwell, Idaho. There is a mandatory 10 hour rest period that must be taken after you use your 11 hour drive time by and that is the way the law is. There is also a mandatory 15 hour clock that starts the moment you start doing anything related to driving a truck and that clock does not stop nor can you go over that clock. The only way to stop the clock is by taking 10 consecutive hours off by Federal Law.

              It sounds to me like you should sit down and read the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations as the company is required by law to inspect, mantain, and repair all vehicles in their fleet at all times. That is a Federal law and the company can not say that they did not know about it.

              Try looking up the regulations at http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regul...fmcsrguide.htm.

              Check out sections 390, 392, 395, and 396 and I am sure you will find out a lot about what the law says relating to driving a truck. This is just what the law says, that is not to mention as to what it is really like driving a truck and I strongly doubt that you have ever driven a truck a day in your life and I doubt that the judge has either.

              Simple common sense needs to be applied here.




              Originally posted by ElleMD View Post
              You have been cited 3 times in 3 states, had an accident you were at fault for, gotten 2 other moving violations and are facing a suspended license and you wonder why you were terminated??? No employer with half a mind would allow you to continue driving a commercial vehicle with a record like that. All the excuses in the world aren't going to change that fact that all of these things happened to you. the fact that they may have written you up one time for something that would have been a violation isn't going to save you from your driving record. The company may be ultimately responsible for making sure that their trucks are in compliance but they absolutely can hold you responsible for ensuring that it is properly maintained on the road. Even that won't get around the accident and moving violations. It certainly won't get you around the fact that you are facing a suspended license!

              It is no one else's fault for not getting you off the hook with the tickets, or for your accident or the safety citations. It may be bad luck but it is a huge liability and if you lost your license, then it would be illegal to continue to employ you as a driver. Your chances of getting UC are iffy at best from my experience with similar claims in MD and my state is very employee friendly when it comes to granting UI

              I doubt your employer is poisoning the judge against you. More than likely it is your attitude about this which is that none of it is your fault. Judges listen to excuses and "its not my fault" all day long and it gets old. Passing off hitting another vehicle as minor even though you did so as the result of an illegal act, blaming someone else for not getting you out of your tickets, the company for not correcting problems with the truck when they were several states away and you hadn't reported anything wrong for them to fix, etc. does not paint you in a very positive light. If it were just one or two of these things, you could call it bad luck and pass it off as not your fault. Put all of them together and it starts to look more like you are just not willing to take responsibility for your actions. Whether it is true or not, that is how it comes across. Taking responsibility for your actions is not the same as willful misconduct.

              Comment


              • #8
                I'm very familiar with the FMCSA. You completely miss my points however.
                I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

                Comment


                • #9
                  rdonovan, I don't think anyone here can provide the help you want. I think you'd better have your pre-paid legal and your father give you advice.
                  The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I'm not the one missing the points. You are the one missing the point completely.

                    Simple common sense would state that there is more here than meets the eye, but apparently you are not capable of excerising such common sense by trying to get the big picture and by paying attention to the details.

                    Common sense also dictates that if you do not know something, then go and find out instead of making false accusations that you can not support.

                    Your actions and your attitude demonstrate that you have no knowledge of the FMCSR, knowledge of the trucking industry or even of things like basic business and social networking skills as if you had such skills, then you would have shown a little more courtesy, respect, and understanding of the issue at hand and bsed upon your behavior it sounds like you could use a few classes relating to the law, the trucking industry, business and basic social skills. It also sounds like it might do you a world of good to sit down and read over the Emily Post book of Ettiquette as well as you seem to be lacking in that department big time.


                    Originally posted by ElleMD View Post
                    I'm very familiar with the FMCSA. You completely miss my points however.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I think that you are probably right as it does not seem as though anyone here really knows much about the law. Nor does it seem like anyone here knows much about simple things like courtesy, respect, and understanding as those topics seem to be way out of everyone's reach.

                      It also sounds like people here could use a basic course in ettiquette as well.


                      Originally posted by cbg View Post
                      rdonovan, I don't think anyone here can provide the help you want. I think you'd better have your pre-paid legal and your father give you advice.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        It's not that the people here don't know the law; it's that you are determined to have us answer the way you want us to whether the law agrees or not.

                        Nor do I agree with you that it's the responders who need etiquette lessons.

                        Good luck.
                        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

                        Comment

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