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MORTON POLSKY v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (03/19/82)

COMMONWEALTH COURT OF PENNSYLVANIA


decided: March 19, 1982.

MORTON POLSKY, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT

Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in the case of In Re: Claim of Morton Polsky, No. B-188814.

COUNSEL

Natale F. Carabello, Jr., for petitioner.

Charles G. Hasson, Associate Counsel, with him Richard L. Cole, Jr., Chief Counsel, for respondent.

Judges Blatt, Williams, Jr. and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Craig.

Author: Craig

[ 65 Pa. Commw. Page 407]

In this unemployment compensation appeal, the claimant*fn1 questions a denial of benefits by the board, affirming a referee's determination that the claimant was ineligible because he voluntarily quit his employment without cause of a necessitous and compelling nature,*fn2 and further determining that the receipt of benefits was improper and is recoupable.*fn3

The claimant had worked for the City of Philadelphia as a permanent civil service employee for almost twenty years. He had attained the position of Voter Registration Investigator I.

Although the city has a mandatory retirement age of 70 years, the claimant voluntarily terminated his employment at age 58. The claimant alleges that his decision to retire was based on "outward pressures" by members of his union local who informed him that there would be layoffs in his department and that he

[ 65 Pa. Commw. Page 408]

    should retire to prevent the layoff of those with less seniority.

The board found:

(4) Claimant voluntarily terminated his employment and elected to retire at 58 years of age because of alleged rumors of personnel layoffs.

(5) Claimant was not notified by anyone in authority that his job was in jeopardy.

(7) Continuing work was available to the claimant, had he desired to remain gainfully employed.

The question is whether the board capriciously disregarded competent evidence in finding that claimant voluntarily quit his employment without necessitous cause.*fn4

In accordance with that standard of review, we find that the record supports the board's findings and conclusion that the claimant did not demonstrate any compelling cause for his termination of employment. The claimant's testimony was only that "[w]ord" of the layoffs "got around" the "grapevine," providing no proof of compulsion of any sort.

Accordingly, we affirm. The claimant is liable for a fault overpayment of $334. Recoupment is due in accordance with Section 804(b) of the law.*fn5

[ 65 Pa. Commw. Page 409]

Order

Now, March 19, 1982, the order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, decision No. B-18814, is hereby affirmed.

Disposition

Affirmed.


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