Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Donald R. Stockdill, No. B-128869.
Timothy P. O'Brien, for appellant.
Daniel R. Schuckers, Assistant Attorney General, with him Susan Shinkman, Assistant Attorney General, Sydney Reuben, Assistant Attorney General, and Robert P. Kane, Attorney General, for appellee.
Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer and Mencer, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.
[ 28 Pa. Commw. Page 517]
This appeal stems from the decision of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) denying benefits to Donald Stockdill (Claimant).
Claimant, an unemployed, qualified crane operator, testified at his hearing before the referee that he had left his home in Georgetown, Pennsylvania, to travel to Brooksville, Kentucky, where he had been informed that positions as crane operators were available. Claimant was subsequently hired by the Seaward Construction Company (Seaward). In response to questions of the referee, Claimant admitted neither job duties nor salary was specified by his employer when he was hired. In fact, Claimant was hired as an unskilled laborer and worked loading poles onto trucks for as many as twelve hours a day at a rate of pay which, he testified, was far less than he had contemplated. Claimant left the job after three days, inferring in his testimony that until that time he was unaware of the true nature, conditions and compensation of his new employment. Subsequently, he applied for unemployment compensation benefits. The Bureau of Employment Security (Bureau) denied benefits based
[ 28 Pa. Commw. Page 518]
upon Section 402(b)(1) of the Unemployment Compensation Law (Act), Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess., P.L. (1937) 2897, as amended, 43 P.S. § 802(b)(1). The referee assigned to the case, after a hearing, affirmed the Bureau's determination. Upon appeal, the Board affirmed the referee and likewise denied benefits to Claimant. It is from this denial that Claimant appeals, alleging error only in the Board's determination of suitability.
Section 402(b)(1) of the Act provides that an employe shall be ineligible for unemployment compensation benefits for any week in which the unemployment is due to his voluntarily leaving work without cause of a necessitous and compelling nature. The section further provides that in the determination of whether a necessitous and compelling cause exists, consideration is to be given to the factors provided under Section 4(t) of the Act, 43 P.S. § 753(t), with respect to suitability. As we stated in Mosley v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 15 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 447, 451, 327 A.2d 199, 201 (1974), Section 402(b)(1) "expressly requires the compensation authorities to consider the suitability of the job which a claimant has quit in determining whether a termination was for necessitous and compelling reasons." The Court wrote:
By voluntarily accepting a job which he subsequently quits, a claimant has admitted to its initial suitability with respect to wages and conditions of employment; and this evidence must be overcome by evidence of a change in conditions of employment or that the claimant was deceived as to or not aware of the conditions later alleged to be onerous when he entered the employment relationship.
15 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. at 451, 327 ...