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04/22/97 CAPPY ASCHEIM v. UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION

April 22, 1997

CAPPY ASCHEIM, PETITIONER
v.
UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT



Appealed From No. B-353596. State Agency, Unemployment Compensation Board of Review.

Before: Honorable James Gardner Colins, President Judge, Honorable Jim Flaherty, Judge, Honorable Emil E. Narick, Senior Judge.

PER CURIAM OPINION

FILED: April 22, 1997

The issue before this Court requires us to examine what is required for predating in certain unemployment compensation cases.

Cappy Ascheim (Claimant) appeals from the order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (UCBR) that affirmed the referee's denial of predating Claimant's benefits. We affirm.

Claimant filed for unemployment compensation benefits effective September 24, 1995, following his separation from Sachs Real Estate Company. The Pennsylvania Job Service initially denied Claimant benefits which Claimant timely appealed. Upon filing his appeal the Job Service informed Claimant that he should continue signing for benefits while his appeal was in process. Claimant continued to file for claims through September 16, 1995, the date he commenced self-employment. The self-employment continued through January 24, 1996. Claimant did not file claims even after terminating self-employment.

On February 6, 1996, Claimant's father died. Claimant became actively engaged in numerous estate and family matters and did not engage in any self-employment activities through April 27, 1996. Claimant still did not file claims for unemployment compensation benefits. However, on April 2, 1996, following hearings the referee reversed the Job Service determination and granted Claimant benefits.

On April 30, 1996, Claimant contacted the Job Service to discuss his request for predating his claim for weeks for which he had not filed for benefits. Claimant's request for predating was denied by the Job Service for compensable weeks ending February 17, 1996, through April 13, 1996. Because Claimant did not request predating until May 1, 1996 and because his father died on February 6, 1996, the predating request was denied pursuant to Section 401(b) of the Unemployment Compensation Law (Law), Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess., P.L. (1937) 2897, as amended, 43 P.S. § 801(b) and 34 Pa. Code § 65.33. On appeal, the UCBR affirmed.

On appeal to this Court, *fn1 Claimant identifies certain infirmities which he claims prejudiced him as well as challenging the UCBR's denial of predating due to his father's death. Claimant's acerbic pro se brief claims that an ex parte communication existed between a Job Service representative and the referee. This alleged ex parte communication was a note on a document which was entered into evidence and became part of the record. This note cannot be considered any type of ex parte communication and in no way violated Claimant's rights as it was entered into evidence. Claimant also points to the use of an incorrect zip code on his decision as being "illegal" (Claimant's brief at 18) and "insane." Id. at 19. These claims cannot be considered more than harmless typographical errors which did not prejudice Claimant as he received the UCBR's decision allowing him to file a timely appeal.

The real issue, thus, is whether the UCBR erred in failing to give Claimant two weeks of predating because of his father's death.

Section 401 of the Law lists four qualifications which must be satisfied by Claimant before becoming eligible for unemployment compensation. Section 401 states:

Compensation shall be payable to any employee who is or becomes unemployed, and who--

(a) has, within his base year, been paid wages for employment as required by Section 404(c) of this Act ...

(b) has registered for work at, and therefore continued to report to an unemployment office in accordance with such regulations ...


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