When you unexpectedly lose your job, it is impossible to know how long it will be before you find new employment. The length of a typical job search depends on many factors, including your pay expectations and your industry. For example, it may be easier to find a job in the retail or hospitality industries, while a highly-specialized industry may take significantly longer. In any event, you will be uncertain how long you will not have regular income.
Unemployment benefits aim to bridge the gap between jobs if your employer terminates you. However, what happens if you receive a denial of your claim? Even if you have savings, those emergency funds can go fast when paying for housing, utilities, food, and the needs of your household. The situation can be particularly dire if you are the sole wage-earner in your house, covering your spouse and children. You do not want to go into debt while searching for a job, as this often leads to bankruptcy down the road. The truth is – most people can’t afford to receive a denial of unemployment benefits.
The first step after a termination should be to meet with an experienced unemployment attorney who understands the laws of your state. An attorney can review what happened at the end of the employment relationship and can advise you whether the law entitles you to benefits. If you do not actually qualify for benefits, you do not want to file a claim, as you may have to pay back any wrongful payments once the unemployment insurer discovers the ineligibility. Next, have your attorney help you with the claim process to ensure everything is done correctly to prevent any unnecessary delays.
If your employer is challenging, your eligibility, the right lawyer can stand up for your rights and challenge your employer’s assertions. Employers often try to claim one of the following:
- You left your job voluntarily
- Your employer terminated you due to misconduct
If you did quit your job due to a hostile work environment or another good cause, your attorney can demonstrate that it was a constructive discharge and you still deserve benefits. If you did not engage in misconduct, your attorney can provide evidence that your actions never constituted misconduct under the law.
A denial is not the end of the road, as you have the right to appeal the unemployment board’s decision. This process can be complicated, however, and you should have skilled legal representation throughout every step to ensure you have the best chances at receiving the benefits you need.
Contact a St. Louis Unemployment Attorney for Assistance Right Away
The Law Office of Kenneth Carp helps clients with every aspect of unemployment claims. We know how important these benefits are to you and your family and we will explore every option to help you get your claim granted. Call today at (636) 947-3600 or contact us online for a free consultation.