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Isayeva v. Employment Department

Court of Appeals of Oregon

November 13, 2014

ANNA A. ISAYEVA, Petitioner,
v.
EMPLOYMENT DEPARTMENT and CHECK CASH PACIFIC, Respondents

Argued and Submitted June 10, 2014.

Employment Appeals Board No. 12AB2594.

Courtney A. Crowe argued the cause for petitioner. With her on the brief was Legal Aid Services of Oregon.

Denise G. Fjordbeck, Attorney-in-Charge, waived appearance for respondent Employment Department.

No appearance for respondent Check Cash Pacific.

Before Armstrong, Presiding Judge, and Nakamoto, Judge, and Egan, Judge.

OPINION

[266 Or.App. 807] NAKAMOTO, J.

Claimant seeks judicial review of an order of the Employment Appeals Board (EAB) concluding that she was disqualified from receiving unemployment insurance benefits because she had been discharged for misconduct. Claimant contends that the EAB's order is not supported by substantial reason and that the EAB committed legal error in its analysis. We agree with claimant and reverse and remand.

We take the facts, which are undisputed, from the EAB's order and the record. Claimant worked for respondent Check Cash Pacific (employer) for over 11 years. During the last four years of her employment, employer expanded her regular job duties and

Page 83

responsibilities. Before the incident that led to her termination, claimant had never refused to perform work and had not been reprimanded for failing to perform her duties. From the time claimant began working in 2001 until 2008, employer gradually increased her hourly wage. From 2008 until employer terminated her employment in 2012, she did not receive pay increases.

The incident that precipitated claimant's termination occurred on June 18, 2012, and concerned her supervisor's request that she review the accuracy of certain loan documents. She had occasionally performed such document reviews in the past. However, she told her supervisor that she would not perform the requested task without receiving a pay raise. After that conversation, claimant continued working for employer for over two weeks. On July 3, claimant's supervisor told the owner what had occurred on June 18. On July 5, the owner told claimant that he was terminating her employment because of her failure to perform the task her supervisor had assigned on June 18.

Claimant applied for unemployment benefits, which the Employment Department (department) denied on the ground that her failure to follow her supervisor's directive " was a wantonly negligent disregard of the employer's interest," and so she " was discharged for misconduct connected with work." Claimant requested a hearing, which was held before an administrative law judge (ALJ) from the Office of Administrative Hearings.

[266 Or.App. 808] The ALJ concluded that claimant had been discharged, but not for misconduct, and awarded her benefits. The ALJ reasoned that claimant's behavior ...


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