Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Lucille L. Sweigart, No. B-149398-B.
Michael Goldberg, for petitioner.
Gary Marini, Assistant Attorney General, with him James K. Bradley, Assistant Attorney General, Richard Wagner, Chief Counsel, and Edward G. Biester, Jr., Attorney General, for respondent.
William W. Boyd, and Xakellis, Perezous & Mongiovi, for intervenor.
Judges Blatt, DiSalle and MacPhail, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge MacPhail.
[ 47 Pa. Commw. Page 423]
Lucille L. Sweigart (Claimant) appeals to this Court from a decision of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) affirming an order of the Office of Employment Security (Office) which denied unemployment compensation benefits to Claimant. The Office found that Claimant voluntarily terminated her employment without cause of a necessitous and compelling nature and, therefore, was ineligible to receive benefits. Section 402 of the Unemployment Compensation Law, Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess., P.L.  2897, as amended, 43 P.S. § 802(b)(1). Claimant raises two issues for our consideration: whether she voluntarily terminated her employment and, if she did, whether she had cause of a necessitous and compelling nature for doing so. We hold that Claimant did not voluntarily terminate her employment and we remand this case for further proceedings.
In an appeal from a decision of the Board finding against the party who bore the burden of proof before the Board, this Court is limited to determining whether the Board's findings of fact are consistent with each other and with the Board's conclusions of law and its order and whether the findings can be sustained without a capricious disregard of competent evidence. Baird v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 30 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 118, 121, 372 A.2d 1254, 1257 (1977). Whether an employee voluntarily terminates his or her employment or is discharged is a question of law and properly subject to our review. Rettan v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 15 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 287, 290, 325 A.2d 646, 647 (1974).
[ 47 Pa. Commw. Page 424]
In the instant case, Claimant had worked as a nurse's aide for Conestoga View (Employer), a nursing home, for approximately three and a half years prior to her termination. During that time, Claimant had a history of personnel problems which she characterized as harassment by other employees. She requested several times that her work shift or floor assignment be changed; Employer granted many, although not all, of the requests. Claimant last worked for Employer on May 8, 1977. She did not work during the following week because of an illness which she reported to Employer. On May 13, 1977, Employer's Administrator sent to Claimant a letter which summarized the difficulties between Claimant and Employer and concluded by stating:
It is my opinion that further discussion on all of these matters is pointless. I am requesting that you come to a realization that Conestoga View is not a suitable place of employment for you. Therefore, I would similarly request your resignation effective immediately.
I am very sorry that we have no other recourse ...