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Home / Opinions / Courts / Court of Appeals, Western District / Unemployment Compensation: Hearing Participation-Good Cause-Briefing Requirements

Unemployment Compensation: Hearing Participation-Good Cause-Briefing Requirements

Where a claimant of unemployment compensation benefits appealed the dismissal of his claim, the pro se appeal addressed the merits of the claim for benefits and did not challenge the finding that he failed to demonstrate good cause for failing to participate in a hearing, and the claimant did not comply with the briefing requirements of Rule 84.04 for good cause, so the appeal must be dismissed.

Mental illness

Dissenting opinion by Newton, J., “I believe that the Commission abused its discretion and improperly disregarded competent evidence in not concluding that Mr. Walker’s mental illness caused the confusion that resulted in missing the notice for the 12:30 p.m. hearing, particularly where he had two hearings within forty-five minutes on the same day and participated with a witness in one of them thus demonstrating an affirmative effort to comply with the meeting notices. I would also find that the Commission erred by misconstruing Mr. Walker’s testimony and separating the failure to focus on, read and understand the merits-hearing notice from the mental illness that he testified interfered with this cognitive ability to do so. Mr. Walker met his burden of showing that he acted in good faith and reasonably under the circumstances and thus had good cause for missing the November 5, 2018, 12:30 p.m. merits hearing. I would grant this point and reverse and remand for the Commission to direct the Appeals Tribunal to make a determination on the merits of Mr. Walker’s appeal.”

Appeal is dismissed.

Walker v. Division of Employment Security (MLW No. 74382/Case No. WD82533 – 24 pages) (Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District, Chapman, J.) Appealed from the Labor and Industrial Relations Commission (Donzell Walker, pro se) (Andrea Follett, Jefferson City, for respondent).