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  1. #1
    mixedin82 is offline Member
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    Suspended without pay question?

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Virginia

    I was suspended from work on 12/15/2010 and was told that it was without pay. My management staff explained that I was being investigated and they could not tell me why or what for. The said I would be called for an interview in as early as a week or longer.

    I haven't done anything, to my knowledge, to be suspended and all the non-management employees CWA Union Members. Do I qualify for unemployment for the time I am missing? Would my union rep be any help? I know that normally, from my prior management experience, that when an employee is suspended without pay it usually means termination.
  2. #2
    cbg
    cbg is offline Senior Member
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    Unemployment is a maybe. The employer is not required to tell you why you are suspended, but they will have to tell the UI commission if they want to contest unemployment.

    It certainly can't hurt to talk to your union rep but there are far too many unknown variables to say what, if any, help he or she can be.
    Two things I am tired of typing: 1.) A wrongful termination does not mean that you were fired for something you didn't do; it means that you were fired for a reason prohibited by law. 2.) The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding contract or CBA expressly says otherwise. If it does, the terms of the contract apply.
  3. #3
    George1776 is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by mixedin82 View Post
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? Virginia

    I was suspended from work on 12/15/2010 and was told that it was without pay. My management staff explained that I was being investigated and they could not tell me why or what for. The said I would be called for an interview in as early as a week or longer.

    I haven't done anything, to my knowledge, to be suspended and all the non-management employees CWA Union Members. Do I qualify for unemployment for the time I am missing? Would my union rep be any help? I know that normally, from my prior management experience, that when an employee is suspended without pay it usually means termination.
    Yes you can get benefits.
  4. #4
    Proserpina is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by George1776 View Post
    Yes you can get benefits.


    ..and you know this how?
  5. #5
    cbg
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    You're prepared to put that in writing, George?

    It's not a guarantee. IF the employer does not contest, she likely will under these circumstances. But if the employer DOES contest, it will depend on what reason the employer provides.
    Two things I am tired of typing: 1.) A wrongful termination does not mean that you were fired for something you didn't do; it means that you were fired for a reason prohibited by law. 2.) The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding contract or CBA expressly says otherwise. If it does, the terms of the contract apply.
  6. #6
    Proserpina is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by cbg View Post
    You're prepared to put that in writing, George?

    It's not a guarantee. IF the employer does not contest, she likely will under these circumstances. But if the employer DOES contest, it will depend on what reason the employer provides.



    Precisely

    Not nearly enough information to say with certainty what will happen.
  7. #7
    Antigone* is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by George1776 View Post
    Yes you can get benefits.
    You haven't been here long enough to play with our crystal ball.
  8. #8
    pattytx is offline Senior Member
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    And none of us here can say with certainty what will happen. Especially George, who has already shown, in his brief time here, that he has no theoretical or practical knowledge of employment law.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    You have not won the law suit lottery; in fact, you haven't even won the law suit scratch-off.
  9. #9
    Betty is offline Senior Member
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    Only the state can say for sure whether the employee gets UI - they make the final decision. There's no way any of us here can know what their decision will be.
  10. #10
    swalsh411 is offline Senior Member
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    If you truly have no clue as to why you are being suspendend/investigated then I would say the chances are pretty good you can get UI. Most of the time when an employee committs misconduct they are aware of it.
  11. #11
    commentator is offline Senior Member
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    Agree wholeheartedly with that statement! Suspended without pay...and don't have a CLUE why? Really? I've seen people file for benefits sometimes with that one. Never once did it prove to be totally true. You've got a clue.

    So you file for unemployment. "I was approached by my supervisor and told that I was going to be suspended without pay for a week or maybe more, pending an investigation" is the reason you give for the fact that you are no longer working. "I do not know what I am being investigated for or what this is about."

    And they are not simply going to approve you an unemployment claim. THey will take your statement, start you certifying for weeks of benefits. They will be making a decision. They have at least two weeks to do the fact finding work before the initial decision to grant benefits would be made. During this period, they will be contacting the employer, asking for further information. If they do not receive any information, they are going to persist, to call, to attempt to find out what is going on.

    During this two or three week period, it is also pretty likely that your employer will be recontacting you. The issue may be resolved, you'll either be put back to work, or you'll be terminated. They should, if they are a uniionized facility, have policies that cause them to have to get back with you fairly quickly, can't just leave you on suspension without pay for a great length of time.

    If they chose to not answer the unemployment commission, just never respond to them, and never call you back, then you would maybe be approved for benefits. As I said, this would be a while on down the road, maybe as much as a month after you filed your claim.

    Most employers who are taking disciplinary action against an employee have no problem with explaning to unemployment insurance what they are doing and why. Unemployment system will be trying diligently to get this information, as a person who has been suspended without pay indefinitely probably did something to cause this to happen, or is certainly suspected of having done something that caused this to happen, and this is not "out of work through no fault of your own."
  12. #12
    mixedin82 is offline Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by commentator View Post
    Agree wholeheartedly with that statement! Suspended without pay...and don't have a CLUE why? Really? I've seen people file for benefits sometimes with that one. Never once did it prove to be totally true. You've got a clue.

    So you file for unemployment. "I was approached by my supervisor and told that I was going to be suspended without pay for a week or maybe more, pending an investigation" is the reason you give for the fact that you are no longer working. "I do not know what I am being investigated for or what this is about."

    And they are not simply going to approve you an unemployment claim. THey will take your statement, start you certifying for weeks of benefits. They will be making a decision. They have at least two weeks to do the fact finding work before the initial decision to grant benefits would be made. During this period, they will be contacting the employer, asking for further information. If they do not receive any information, they are going to persist, to call, to attempt to find out what is going on.

    During this two or three week period, it is also pretty likely that your employer will be recontacting you. The issue may be resolved, you'll either be put back to work, or you'll be terminated. They should, if they are a uniionized facility, have policies that cause them to have to get back with you fairly quickly, can't just leave you on suspension without pay for a great length of time.

    If they chose to not answer the unemployment commission, just never respond to them, and never call you back, then you would maybe be approved for benefits. As I said, this would be a while on down the road, maybe as much as a month after you filed your claim.

    Most employers who are taking disciplinary action against an employee have no problem with explaning to unemployment insurance what they are doing and why. Unemployment system will be trying diligently to get this information, as a person who has been suspended without pay indefinitely probably did something to cause this to happen, or is certainly suspected of having done something that caused this to happen, and this is not "out of work through no fault of your own."
    Nope, I have no clue why I was suspended. But you are probably right about the length of time so I went ahead and filed this morning and will wait. Hopefully my employer does contact me prior to me getting an approved claim because being out of work during the holidays isn't good for anyone. But I have seen and heard from other employees that work/worked with me that AT&T and the union bump heads a lot and it usually does take long so I will wait and see.
  13. #13
    commentator is offline Senior Member
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    If you filed today, with this kind of issue, you are not even about to get an approved claim within the holidays. I'd say mid January would be about standard operating procedure for when you'd hear something from unemployment about approval or denial.

    Even if your employer were to send back information immediately saying they had laid you off due to lack of work which would result in a "clean claim," your first week of certification after you file is a waiting week in VA, and you'd be looking at two and a half to three weeks to get your first paying week check. And allowing that the Christmas holiday season is the very busiest time of year for unemployment insurance anyway, and always results in a very slow first pay and decision rate, and these last few have been very bad years lately as far as work load, I certainly would not be counting on getting anything at all for the next month from unemployment, even under the rosiest possible outcome in your favor.

    Most of the big companies like you mentioned have their unemployment claims handled by a third party, and those third party folks will pursue every single issue separation eagerly and thoroughly. So it will take a while.

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