Basic Lower Appeals Hearings Information - Unemployment Insurance Appeals
A claimant for unemployment insurance who has been denied benefits may file an appeal of that denial to the Appeals Division. An employer may appeal a determination granting benefits to a former employee. All appeals must be in writing and submitted by mail, fax, or in-person Appeals cannot be filed by E-mail. All appeals must be filed within the time period stated on the face of the determination being appealed.
If an appeal is filed, a hearing will be held by a Hearing Examiner, who will then issue a written decision. That decision is appealable by a claimant, an employer or the Department to the Board of Appeals.
Record made at hearing
It is required that a record be established of the hearing and this is accomplished by making an official recording. (Parties are prohibited from making unofficial recordings.)
Testimony under oath
All testimony given at appeals hearings must be given under oath or affirmation. Legal Counsel and other representatives not testifying need not be sworn.
Who proceeds first
In Lower Appeals cases involving a termination from employment, the employer testifies first. In cases involving a resignation from employment, the claimant testifies first.
After the testimony of each witness has been completed, the opposing party or his/her legal counsel or representative will be offered the right of cross examination. This procedure will be followed until all witnesses for either party (claimant or employer) have testified. The other side will then begin its case following the same format.
Do not interrupt
Even if you strongly disagree with what a witness says, please do not interrupt or argue with the witness. You will have the opportunity to ask questions of that witness and to present your own side of the story. An orderly and systematic hearing is to the advantage of all parties. This does not preclude formal, legal objections to testimony/exhibits.
In some cases the parties may wish to present documentary evidence (such as personnel records, paycheck stubs, medical certificates, etc.). These papers will be accepted as long as they are relevant to the case. Parties should prepare three copies of any papers they plan to submit as evidence. Copies cannot be made at hearings. Instructions on how to submit documents for a telephone hearing will be on the back of your hearing notice.
Written decision and further appeals
You will receive your decision in writing; Hearing Examiners do not issue oral decisions at the time of the hearing. A decision will be issued after the Hearing Examiner has reviewed all the evidence, made findings of fact, and applied the Unemployment Insurance Law to those facts. The full written decision is mailed to all interested parties as soon as possible. There is a right to further appeal which is fully explained in the decision.
If you have any further questions about the procedures for appeals hearing, please ask the Hearing Examiner prior to the start of the hearing.
For information concerning a Lower Appeal, please contact 410-767-2421. For information concerning a Board appeal, please contact 410-767-2781.