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Can unemployment benefits be denied based on a 'prior' job, not the most recent job which I was laid off from?

Seattle, WA |

I didn't even quit the employer in question, a temp agency. After an assignment at a company in which my hours were being altered illegally, I chose not to call the temp agency and seek work based on their lack of action in correcting abuses. Instead I obtained a better paying job no more than a week and a half later. I worked for this new employer for a month and a half and was laid off. I then filed for unemployment. I was laid off for a little less than a month and am working again with this employer. I did not claim unemployment for the week or so after the temp agency. I claimed after being laid off from a new employer.

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Attorney answers 1

Posted

I have handled many appeals from denials of unemployment compensation. I have never seen a single instance of denial based on why you left "prior" employment, it focuses on the reason employment with your last employer ended. Therefore the answer is "no," if by "based on a 'prior' job," you mean will they question whether your quit that job, or not, or why.
The job prior to the last one would enter in only in determining if you have enough work credits to qualify for benefits.
If you are denied benefits, contact an attorney about an appeal.

Asker

Posted

They have done this already. I was explicitly clear that the staffing company was not my most recent employer but the intake operator who took my claim did not know how else to classify my leaving this company other than to put "voluntary quit" and it automatically red flagged me for questions. I answered the questions honestly and told them I did not quit, but did not seek further staffing jobs, so they denied my claim based on a voluntary quit. Since it appears they blatantly disregarded the rules or regulations in the determination, can I get legal fees for fighting the denial on appeal?

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