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UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD REVIEW COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. BRENDA G. YOUNG (02/26/76)

decided: February 26, 1976.

UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
BRENDA G. YOUNG, APPELLANT



Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Brenda G. Young, No. B-122947.

COUNSEL

Robert L. Keogh, for appellant.

Charles G. Hasson, Assistant Attorney General, with him Sydney Reuben, Assistant Attorney General, and Robert P. Kane, Attorney General, for appellee.

Judges Crumlish, Jr., Mencer and Blatt, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Blatt.

Author: Blatt

[ 23 Pa. Commw. Page 459]

This is an appeal by Brenda G. Young (claimant) from a decision of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) denying her benefits on the basis that her dismissal from employment resulted from

[ 23 Pa. Commw. Page 460]

    willful misconduct which rendered her ineligible for such benefits under Section 402(e) of the Unemployment Compensation Law.*fn1

The claimant was employed by Doeler-Jarvis Division of N L Industries, Inc., for a twenty-month period prior to April 25, 1974, when she was dismissed for alleged excessive absenteeism. Her application for unemployment compensation benefits was denied by the Bureau of Employment Security (Bureau), and she then appealed for a hearing before a referee. At this hearing, the employer's representative testified that the claimant had been absent on 37 different occasions, many of which were for periods of two or more consecutive days, or for a total of 79 days. Doctors' certificates were presented relating to only 19 of these periods of absence, but the record appears to indicate only five of these specifically indicated an illness as the reason for absence, while the other 14 indicated no specific reason. The employer's representative also testified that it was the employer's policy in cases of absenteeism to reprimand the individual verbally and then to give three written warnings prior to dismissal, and the record here would support a finding that the normal procedure was followed in this case. The claimant's services were ultimately terminated following a two-day absence for which she had merely reported to her employer that she had been absent for "personal" reasons. She argued before the referee, however, that her absence in this instance was because of injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident, which she claims to have reported on the

[ 23 Pa. Commw. Page 461]

    following day. On the basis of this evidence, the referee reversed the decision of the Bureau and awarded benefits. The employer's subsequent appeal to the Board resulted in a reversal of the referee's decision, and the claimant's appeal to this Court followed.

In unemployment compensation cases, review by this Court is confined to questions of law and to a determination as to whether or not the findings of the Board are supported by substantial evidence. Warminster Fiberglass Co. v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 15 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 385, 327 A.2d 219 (1974). In this appeal the claimant asserts that a letter submitted to the Board by the employer as an attachment to its appeal provided the basis for the Board's findings that she was guilty of willful misconduct and that this ...


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