Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in the case of In Re: Claim of Roy L. Green, No. B-171072-B.
Thomas F. Meister, with him Howard D. Miskey, for petitioner.
Richard Wagner, Chief Counsel, with him Joel G. Cavicchia, Associate Counsel, and LeRoy S. Zimmerman, Attorney General, for respondent.
Judges Mencer, Craig and MacPhail, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Craig.
[ 61 Pa. Commw. Page 232]
In this unemployment compensation case, the claimant*fn1 questions a decision of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review which reversed the referee's award and denied benefits on the ground that the claimant's unemployment was a result of willful misconduct.*fn2
Flinchbaugh Products (employer) discharged claimant in November 1978 for having accumulated more than seven "unauthorized" absences, thus violating the employer's rule that eight such "unauthorized"
[ 61 Pa. Commw. Page 233]
absences in a twelve-month period would constitute cause for dismissal.
As in W. R. Grace v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 50 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 412, 412 A.2d 1128 (1980), the employer's policy here is a no-fault policy, i.e., unauthorized absences include any and all absences, other than a very few exceptions not relevant here.*fn3
An employer bears the burden of proving a claimant's willful misconduct;*fn4 we must reverse because the employer here has not done so.
The record reveals that, on June 20, 1978, claimant received a written warning about his accumulation of absences. Of the seven later instances of absence counted against claimant, the employer's own testimony indicates that five were due to illness; only one absence, July 15, was unexplained, and it occurred more than three months before claimant's discharge. The last ...