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FIRST FAMILY FEDERAL SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (09/03/82)

decided: September 3, 1982.

FIRST FAMILY FEDERAL SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. JOSEPH P. GENUARDI, INTERVENOR



Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in the case of In Re: Claim of Joseph P. Genuardi, No. B-195752.

COUNSEL

Robert J. Kerns, Landis, Williams & Kerns, for petitioner.

James C. Sommar, with him George W. Tracy, Holl, Sommar & Tracy, for intervenor.

No appearance for respondent.

President Judge Crumlish, Jr. and Judges Williams, Jr. and Doyle, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 68 Pa. Commw. Page 579]

First Family Federal Savings and Loan Association (employer) appeals from an Unemployment Compensation Board of Review order granting benefits to Joseph P. Genuardi (employee). We affirm.

When Genuardi, a janitorial supervisor, approached the employer's branch manager to discuss the conduct of a subordinate, an argument ensued during which Genuardi, who has a penchant for manual gesturing, pointed at the manager, three feet away, who reached out and slapped the employee's hand.

[ 68 Pa. Commw. Page 580]

Genuardi, responding to the contact, warned the manager that, if she touched him again, he would reciprocate, at which point the confrontation ceased. Consequently, Genuardi was discharged.

The Office of Employment Security denied benefits, concluding that the employee's behavior amounted to willful misconduct under Section 402(e) of the Unemployment Compensation Law (Law).*fn1 The referee reversed, and the Board affirmed the granting of benefits.

The employer has the burden of proving an employee's willful misconduct by substantial evidence. Gane v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 41 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 292, 293, 398 A.2d 1110, 1111 (1979). Where, as here, the employer fails to sustain this burden, our scope of review is limited to determining whether the ...


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