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Unemployment fact finding interview New Jersey

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  • Unemployment fact finding interview New Jersey

    Here is my situation. I took a job at a CPA firm in December. On April 15, I was called into HR and was told I didn't have the skill set they thought when they hired me and the firm was going through a tough time and they had to let me go. I asked about eligibility for unemployment. The HR manager said I was eligible and they wouldn't object to me collecting unemployment. I filed and answered that I was terminated for a combination performance issue/lack of work. and got the first check. Then I got a notice for a fact finding interview on May 5. The notice said, "You may have been separated due to misconduct." What could this be? HR said point blank, they wouldn't object to me collecting. Is this just a formality when the cause of separation is anything other than a lack of work? What should I do?

  • #2
    Tell the state the truth. File an appeal if need be. The person you previously talked to was probably not the CEO. Some more senior person apparently over ruled what HR had to say. It happens. But there is nothing that says that you have to go along with this. Do not get overly excercised (because that fails to impress anyone who works for the state). Stay calm. Tell the truth. It works or it does not.
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
    Philip K. **** (1928-1982)


    • #3
      Thanks. I know it wasn't misconduct. The exact words were, "The feedback we've been getting is that your accounting skills aren't what we thought when we hired you. The firm is going through a rough time and we have to let you go." I spoke to my uncle today, who is a lawyer. He said it is probably a mistake. He said NJ is one of the most liberal states in the country when it comes to who can collect and if there is a dispute, unemployment usually sides with the employee. I had also briefly spoken to the managing partner, who made the decision. He said the same thing about why I was terminated. I asked him about collecting and he didnt seem like he would protest it.


      • #4
        All you can do is appeal & tell the truth. The state will be the one to decide if you get UI or not.

        Good luck.
        Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

        Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.


        • #5
          I know Jersey very well and I'm almost certain you'll get it. Performance is almost never a "disqualifier" which doesn't happen in NJ anyway. Worst case scenario is the 6 week penalty and even that is hard to get. NJ UI is very employee friendly as it should be considering the much higher rates that we pay vs. the surrounding states.
          "Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate'' - Sir William of Ockham, a.k.a. Ockham's Razor


          • #6
            While I agree with the last response, I would like to add a qualifer. Some employers lie. What you just said here might not be the same "facts" presented by the employer. Past that there will be an Administrative Law Judge (called that or something else) hearing and deciding the case. Judges bring their own baggage to the hearing and sometime hear (and think) what they want to hear. I just want to caution that there are really no sure things when it comes to administrative hearings or court cases.


            "A judge is a law student who grades his own papers".
            H. L. Menken
            "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
            Philip K. **** (1928-1982)


            • #7
              Sorry for the epic long story... please advise

              How does this jive for an appeal?

              Dear anyone who can help me,

              I am appealing the decision to revoke my unemployment benefits. I strongly feel that I was mistreated by my previous employers. I am currently seeking employment in other states and that is the reason for my delay in writing this appeal.

              I started working for nameless Camera Store on XXXXX at $10 per hour. I was interviewed by Mr. X, Assistant Store Manager, and was hired to work closely with Mrs. X, Assistant Store Manager. He explained that I would receive my first review at 6 months which could possibly result in a raise to $12 per hour. Mrs. X informed me that I was “taking over her position as processing manager without the title at first.” I inquired what I would need to do to move up within the company and highlighted my Photoshop skills as well as my 4 years experience as a general manager. She explained the management at Nameless Camera believes in seniority, and that I would have to be patient in order to move up, because it would not be fair to employees whom have been here longer. I complied and started my training for the processing counter.

              Since I began working during the busy holiday season, I received very minimal training from Mrs. X. I used my prior experience to bridge the gap. My outlined responsibilities included reporting to Mrs. X directly any and all issues behind the processing counter, cashier, processing any film/digital orders, answering phones, restocking, sales, and opening and closing duties. Within the first 3-5 months, I was given additional responsibilities behind the processing counter, such as monitoring the older employees sales, whom Mrs. X explained that “could not be fired due to their age”, to prevent many consistent mistakes, handling of difficult regular customers and complaints, photo kiosk computer repair, replying to customer emails and calls, scanning and photoshoping gallery book covers for the company website, and computer support for customers in store and. In addition I was chosen for a photo id business card.

              Having faith in their business, I began to offer ideas that were well received and in some cases implemented into daily routine, for example: offer customers free bottled water. I was doing everything I could to portray the best customer service experience possible and to promote our business further and further. After 6 months, I was told by Mr. X that I would be given a performance evaluation. This evaluation however did not occur until 9 and a half months of being employed, despite several inquiries on my part for the delay. I had spoken several times with Mrs. X, then Mr. X, and finally, I approached Mr. IT, General Manager & CTO, whom approached Mrs. X on my behalf. Mr. IT explained that I needed to find more value for myself at Nameless Camera. I asked him if I could assist with the new “bible book” of pricing for the processing counter since the old one was dated and missing some spoken guidelines. I was told this was Mrs. X’s project alone. It has been two years in the making. I also approached Mrs. X about doing consulting work, considering I was already doing so in store, and was told by Mrs. X that I had to be “trained” within 2 weeks or so when she had time to do so. That “training” was never given.

              During the review, I received only negative feedback from Mrs. X and the possibility of a $1 increase per hour within another month. I was given a rating sheet to gauge my performance from 1 to 5. She was to do the same, I never received her appraisal. I began detecting what I perceived as contempt from Mrs. X. I found it very strange that I would receive praise from customers letters and Mr. O, President & Owner, whom said I delivered “some of the best customer service” he had seen as well as having a very positive and agreeable attitude, and only negative comments from Mrs. X.

              Reluctantly, I spoke with Mr. B; the Store Manager whom had been insulting to me since I had began working there, about my concerns after a big blow up with Mrs. X. On that day I called out sick, Mrs. X called me and said the store was understaffed. I asked if there was anyone else because I needed more rest. She then called 2 hours later (12:00pm) to restate the understaffing. I told her since there was no one else, I would come in at 1:00 pm no matter what, hoping to prove my 110% commitment. When I showed up at 1:00 pm, Mrs. X was not at the store to brief me on the situation. She had gone to a consulting job. I found that to be very disrespectful on her part, considering she had not called anyone else who was off that day or rescheduled her consulting job. I continued to work with diarrhea, a migraine headache, low fever, and nausea until closing. Upon Mrs. X’s return, she called me into the office, and began to scold me for statements I made about my $1 dollar raise. She asked me why I would say “I can’t wait for my raise next month.” And I replied because I really could use it. She then says, “It is exactly that kind of talk that won’t get you a raise.” At this point I was totally surprised by her statements. I asked her why on a day that I showed up sick that she decided to discuss this. I explained my symptoms and she said that I didn’t clearly state all of my ailments. In an attempt to diffuse the negativity, I asked her what extra work I took on the day before. She said she didn’t know. I reminded her that I had replaced all of the card readers in the photo kiosks, which I did several times during my employment there. She herself asked me to do so. I stated that I felt as though I could not build a productive and professional relationship with Mrs. X because she seemed to forget what I would get accomplished day to day. I explained that I felt like I was being held to a higher standard than every other employee. I felt that I was given the undesirable tasks, instead of alternating with coworkers as it was said during Saturday meetings, on top of my usual duties. I never said no to any task given to me. She then stated that I should be glad I even have a job having shown up with no experience. I was appalled at this comment, considering my resume and myself clearly stated that I managed a movie theater for 4 years and that I had taken photography in college. Doesn’t that count for something? I asked. She said no. At that point, I said that I didn’t think this job was working out and her response was “good.” I proceed to clear out my cubby and walk out the door. By then no other workers were present other than Mr. B, the Store Manager. He immediately asked me what had happened. I explain that I felt I would never get ahead because of Mrs. X. He pleaded with me to talk with him in the office and I agreed. I explained what had happened. He said that his “only problem with me was that he didn’t have ten of me.” He explained that this was the first he had heard of this and he would look into it. He asked that I talk to him first from now on. I asked for a $2 dollar raise and to be reassigned to Mr. X. The next day I received a $2 dollar raise and reported to both Rob and Mrs. X from then on. This was sufficient for the time being. I simply wanted to be appreciated for my hard work and extra responsibilities, as well as compensated adequately.

              As the weeks went by, I referred to myself and was referred to as the “go to” person, or gopher, behind the counter. The majority of questions about the processing counter and kiosks, PC consulting related questions, faulty product questions and troubleshooting, as well extra services, not offered by Nameless Camera officially, were directed at me. Mrs. L, our bookkeeper, would approach me with errors made by other employees and I would help her fix them, saving company time and money. This became a regular occurrence. Every first Saturday of the month, we all received a printout of our errors of the previous month. I was not on that list for the last seven months I was employed there. They (my bosses) would approach me with tasks that contradicted the other. For example: I was repeatedly told to burn DVDs for preferred customers and coworkers that involved making slideshows as well as copying slideshows made by wedding videographers, involving securing written releases. They outsource this service as well. I also was asked to diagnose and fix laptops for our best customers. They insisted I did not charge. It became increasingly confusing for me considering they would ask me to do what afterwards they themselves said not to. Also, there were no pricing in our “bible book” for these extra services the preferred customers received. At that time I was answering to 5 bosses: Mrs. X, Mr. X, Mr. B, Mr. IT, and, when he was around, Tom.

              At 11 months of employment I was asked by Tom how I was doing. I took that opportunity to outline my thoughts and concerns to him. He said he had not heard anything to that effect and that I should talk with Mr. IT. I told him I already had expressed these concerns with Mrs. X, Mr. X, Mr. B, and Mr. IT. He did not have an answer for me. Again and again I was promised additional responsibilities by Mr. IT for possible higher pay but never delivered. For example: finding products photos for the company website on my own time. I noticed that other employees seemed to get their promotions at around 12 months. I remained patient and continued to do what I was told to do. Mr. B, the Store Manager, approached me about the processing manager position and said to act on it because he thought I could handle it. At that point, I took complete responsibility of the processing counter. I was also asked to complete several retouching emergencies in photoshop for customers, ranging from funeral photos to Christmas cards. In my opinion, the processing counter was running smoothly with a minimal amount of mistakes and customer complaints with excellent quality control. I was diligent in my reporting of any issues with Mr. X and Mrs. X. When I would report to Mr. X he would give me his time and attention, Mrs. X would tell me she was too busy or not respond to any of my notes left on her desk, it would seem she was purposely keeping herself out of the loop to fain ignorance at a later time. Over time, from approximately 10 to 15 Months of employment, several instances occurred involving Mr. X, Mrs. X’s husband. He became increasingly hostile and insulting to me, including, but not limited to, tripping me into a doorway as a joke and yelling “You don’t deserve to work here.” at me, in front of customers and coworkers, for asking him for help with a customer in his department, Leica. I continued to be stressed and found it hard to stay positive at work and to get a good nights rest as well. I felt as though I could not turn to anyone in management.

              On my last day of employment, I showed up for the Saturday morning meeting. Mrs. X made an announcement that she was promoting the newest hire of two months to processing counter manager, going against her seniority policy. She also stated her reasoning was that she had no “go to” person behind the processing counter. I took much offense to this statement. The new hire had no prior management experience and seemed to be struggling with the P.O.S., photo kiosks, taking passports, and store policy. After the meeting, all of the processing counter employees had a meeting with Mrs. X which out lined her reasoning. The topics of the meeting were that (the new hire) was promoted because she had several years experience behind a processing counter, and her name was just like Mrs. X. Mrs. X joked that this was her clone. (the new hire) was given the floor. She then stated that no one should have their feelings hurt by this decision and stated she will still do all of her usual duties with no mention of what she plans to do as manager. I didn’t say a word. I waited until I could talk with Mr. B privately, in the office. I asked him how a seemingly rash decision could have been made. He stated this was not his decision. I asked him why no one spoke up on my behalf when Mrs. X said there was no “go to” person behind the processing counter. He stated simply that he “didn’t say that,” but agreed I was that “go to” person. I told him I felt humiliated, disrespected, and that this was an attempted by Mrs. X to push me out. I asked him if I had a future with the company or if they had any alternate plans for me. He then stated he “didn’t have to have this conversation with me,” and that “It wasn’t your decision either.” He added, “Just do your job.” I asked, “What do you (Mr. B) want me to do when Abby (the new hire) asks me how to do everything?” He repeated, “Just do you job.” I said, “The job you gave her?” He said “Yes.” I then said, “I quit.” He replied, “Fine.” After clearing my cubby, I walked over to Mr. X and shook his hand and said, “Thank you for the employment.” I then walked over to the new hire and said, “Congratulations and good luck,” and walked out the back door to Mrs. X snickering and (the new hire, among two others, whom I had helped train) bursting into tears. Mr. B did not stop me this time. He stood there jaw dropped in disbelief.

              I was very upset having been put into that position by employers that I went above and beyond for. This experience has affected me very negatively and I felt that I had no other course of action, other than to terminate my 15 month employment at Nameless Camera. They still have several customer praises mentioning me by my full name on their company website.

              I obviously took the names out and I know it was looooooong. Thank you for reading it. Please help me! Thanks



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