Friday, November 6, 2009

UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE - SELF EMPLOYED

Another matter that I consulted on recently....Claimant was a part owner of a business. Claimant later sold interest in business but continued to work for several months with same business and then was unemployed. Claimant was receiving benefits but now the Department of Labor is seeking a return arguing that Claimant was not eligible due to self employment. The unemployment Insurance Law provides in Section 591 that benefits "shall be paid only to a claimant who is totally unemployed." Section 522 of the law defines total unemployment as "the total lack of employment on any day" and specifies that such employment includes "that not defined" in the Unemployment Insurance Law. This last mentioned specification has been interpreted by the Courts to mean that a self-employed claimant is not totally unemployed within the meaning of Section 522 of the law. Again, each case must be examined on a case by case basis.

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