An unemployment hearing can intimidate and overwhelm you. By preparing carefully and knowing what to expect, you can increase your chances of presenting an effective claim. An experienced Missouri unemployment attorney will help you prepare your case to increase your chances of success in obtaining a favorable result from the tribunal.
Before the Hearing
Success at any court hearing requires preparation before you have your day in court. In an unemployment hearing, document the circumstances in which your employer terminated your employment. This might consist of performance evaluations, warning letters, employee handbooks, policy manuals, or pay stubs. Consider what witnesses might testify about your employment to verify your eligibility for unemployment benefits. This includes your own testimony. Outline your points in advance so that you can stay on track at the hearing. If you have any witnesses who may not want to voluntarily testify, the judge may need to issue a subpoena to require their attendance at the hearing.
At the Hearing
Arrive early at the hearing location. Allow plenty of time to park and find your assigned hearing room in the building. Dress appropriately—preferably in business attire—to show respect for the judge and the hearing process. Always refer to the judge as “your honor.” Never argue with the judge, or allow yourself to become disrespectful in your language or demeanor.
Remain calm when you testify and the other attorney cross-examines you. Court hearings can evoke emotional responses, and many litigants worry about their access to unemployment benefits. Nonetheless, remain on point at all times during the hearing. Do not raise your voice at the other attorney. Return to your prepared talking points about why you are eligible for unemployment benefits. Politely but firmly deny any false allegations. Carefully avoid making any misleading or untrue statements (in whole or in part).
Appealing the Verdict
If the unemployment judge rules against you, you may have an opportunity to appeal it. You must file the written appeal within a short time period after the judge issues the verdict. An appeal can cost a lot of time and money and requires a convincing argument that the judge made the wrong decision and the Division of Employment Security Appeals Tribunal should overturn it. An unemployment attorney can help you determine whether you have legal grounds for an appeal. Applicants must consider whether an appeal is worth the time and expense of the process before moving forward with a written appeal.
Aggressive Representation for Your Unemployment Claim
Attorney Kenneth P. Carp has extensive experience in fighting for unemployment benefits. Trust his skill and experience to protect your legal rights. Call (636) 947-3600 or write us online today to schedule your consultation. He will fight hard for the unemployment benefits to which you are legally entitled.