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Underwood v Corrigan Air & Sea Cargo Systems 12.103

Section 29(1)(b)

MISCONDUCT, Burden of proof

CITE AS: Underwood v Corrigan Air & Sea Cargo Systems, Wayne Circuit Court No. 96-600063-AE (June 25, 1996).

Appeal pending: No

Claimant: Mark Underwood

Employer: Corrigan Air and Sea Cargo Systems

Docket No. B94-15047-134435W

CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: The employer's absence from the Referee hearing does not require the conclusion the employer failed to meet its burden of proof under Section 29(1)(b) when the claimant's testimony establishes the discharge was for disqualifying reasons.

FACTS: The employer did not appear at the Referee hearing. The only evidence presented was the claimant's testimony. The claimant testified that under the collective bargaining agreement there was a five step disciplinary procedure. A violation of the fifth step resulted in discharge. The claimant admitted he had been through four of the five steps in the disciplinary process. The last incident resulted in the claimant being in violation of the fifth step. The last incident was the claimant's absence due to illness. The employer required substantiation by verification of a visit to physician or hospital. The claimant failed to present a note from a physician to verify his absence.

DECISION: The claimant is disqualified for benefits.

RATIONALE: The claimant's testimony clearly indicated he violated both the collective bargaining agreement and the employer's policies regarding absences. The fact that the employer failed to appear at the Referee hearing does not, in and of itself, support a conclusion that it failed to sustain its burden of proof.


24, 16, d12: F

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