“Tips for Success: Attendance-Based Claims”

When a former employee files for unemployment insurance, it’s usually because they believe they have a case that shows their firing wasn’t their fault. In certain situations, like layoffs, this is true, but other claims have room for a company to contest. One example is an attendance-based claim. The worker you let go might claim they were fired for being chronically late or not showing up, but they weren’t aware of a policy that prohibited such actions and were never formally reprimanded. When this happens, the easiest path to success is ensuring you have a system in place.

Develop a system

If you don’t have a system, now is the time to create official wording around your attendance policy. The key is to be as specific as possible. Simply including a line about the necessity of arriving to a shift on time can leave room for argument.

You need to decide how late an employee can be and how many times they can miss that deadline before they receive a warning. Then you decide how many strikes before they are let go. The same goes for missing shifts. Decide how many they can miss before firing and what qualifies as an acceptable reason for missing work.

In this policy, you’ll also include how they’re to go about submitting their reasons for either being late or missing their shift. Decide if they need to submit a note to be placed in their file and a doctor’s note when applicable. The more detailed you make your policy, the harder it is for a claimant to contest their firing.

Keep employees informed

Once you have a plan or if you’re currently using one, make sure every employee is aware of it. Make reviewing it part of their orientation and require signatures after reading it. This provides strong evidence they are aware of the policy and repeatedly violated it anyway. If you make an update, go through the same process of giving it to every employee and requiring them to sign, so you know they’re aware of what’s expected of them.

Document everything

Once you have a policy and you’ve made sure everyone is aware, your job becomes keeping track of attendance-based infractions. Make a note in your employee’s file of their time card and every time you’ve had to talk to them. Include notes excusing them as well.

Don’t miss a deadline with Unemployment Tracker

Even if you put all this in place and your employee doesn’t have a case, they still may file, and you might fail to contest the claim on time. When this happens, you end paying more even though the worker was fired for their own fault. Trust Unemployment Tracker to keep your claims organized, so you never miss a deadline and you maximize your business and bottom line.


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