My Unemployment Nightmare

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My Unemployment Nightmare

As if being fired from the most nightmarish employment I had ever had in my life, wasn't enough. It was about to get a whole lot worse. I picked myself up, dusted myself off and re-ignited my 12 year old unemployment insurance account. Spent hours on the phone with multiple representatives trying to figure out why my security question answers weren’t working. Turns out, in 2008, when paperwork was still on paper my gender was mistakenly checked as male. I assure you I have a very female name and have always sounded female. (Despite the fact that some G@G users try to accuse me of being a man). How did 3 agents miss this???

Then I get something in the mail. My 8 year old runs in excitedly with a package and exclaims “Mommy! I think my Legos are here.” Unfortunately it was not Legos. It was a completely baseless, unsubstantiated, disturbing unemployment appeal. With the supposed evidence being: the 27 page company handbook. I had been naive to this point. I thought once unemployment insurance granted me eligibility that I was in the clear. Nope, my hearing was scheduled for a month away and I decided I needed a lawyer.

I found an amazing unemployment lawyer who knows unemployment law better than you would imagine is possible for one human being. She met with me on countless phone conversations and even a 2.5 hour prep meeting the day before my hearing. She charged me a single, reasonable fixed rate fee and it was worth every penny.

Then, less than a week before my hearing I receive an email from USPS that my piece-of-shit former employers are sending me “additional documents for UI hearing”2-day priority mail, but actually due to arrive the day before the hearing. Spoiler alert: they never arrived, but the judge got them, faxed them to my lawyer and she emailed them to me, so I was still prepared.

What could these mysterious documents be? (I’m sure you’re wondering as I did.) Well I’ll tell you, 2 of my former back-stabbing, lying ,mean-girl co-workers decided to write, sign and submit scathing, untrue statements about me. No worries. I had reasonable and plausible explanations for every supposed incident they wrote in those multi-page statements. Why? Because I was telling the fucking truth and they weren’t.

My unemployment hearing (best described as like a phone trial) which was supposed to last 1 hour lasted 2.5 and the judge had to reschedule her subsequent hearing to accommodate. My former employers (more like former abusers) tried to bring all of the above claims, only with the tables turned as if I had been the perpetrator. Under oath they testified that meetings and conversations I’d had with former co-workers, to which they were not privy, never happened. Yet, supposed “unacceptable” conversations by me they also weren’t privy to did somehow happen. All.lies.

It should also be noted that at one point during my hearing the president talked over the judge (ironically an offense they were falsely accusing me of). At another point, my former manager got flustered when my lawyer asked her a question and yelled at her. Boohoo.

My lawyer’s statements were air-tight. She argued under the law as it is stated in the statues that I did not intentionally, indifferently or negligently engage in any misconduct during my employment. Despite the fact that my shady former employers lied under oath, testified to things for which they had no direct knowledge and tried but did not succeed to trip me up.

Furthermore, my lawyer made an incredibly compelling argument that I am also eligible for unemployment insurance under a statute that states I am eligible if I am discharged due to mental illness or defect. (The one time in my life I have felt thankful for my stupid anxiety disorder.) No stigma.

Her closing statement was worthy of a mic drop.

All this to say, my lawyer had won cases with half as much evidence as mine, so I thought we had completely mopped the floors with them. To my surprise I had been given the only judge who likes to side with employers. She said I exaggerated and that because I failed to email the correct person, ONE time, because they were on vacation, apparently I don't qualify for my 3 months of unemployment insurance. What.a.fucking.joke.

They wasted way more of upper management’s time crafting that elaborate web of lies than what they owe for unemployment insurance. They wasted unemployment insurance’s time during covid when they are booked back-to-back with 5 hearings per day. Some people aren’t getting a hearing for as long as 3 months.

So there you go, that was my year from hell. I’m enjoying my fresh start at the best employment I've ever had in my life. 6 months into this one and I still absolutely love it. Of course I appealed the judge's stupid assertion that I somehow didn't qualify for my unemployment insurance. Still waiting to hear back about that (I was fired in Oct. 2020). My state has the most convoluted unemployment law you could ever imagine. I will never get to see go in front of another judge. I'm stuck with this immoral bitch who decided she didn't like me. Even my judge is a mean girl! What the fuck is this world coming to? Don't worry, I plan to run this up the flag pole. I am not giving up easily! Stay tuned for more updates.

Anyway, for fun I sometimes like to peruse my former client’s websites and social media posts to see what they are up to. In the months since I’ve been gone I’ve found a blog article with a photo that still had the stock photo company’s watermark on it, 3 holiday social posts that were dated incorrectly during a time the entire agency was out of the office and would be unable to correct them in time, along with countless typos. I never made even one error close to that egregious. They all deserve each other. Peace out.

My Unemployment Nightmare
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