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There were no decisions on unemployment benefits issued today by the Minnesota Court of Appeals.  This usually means that a whole slew of cases will be forthcoming.

If you are denied unemployment benefits, or are an employer who wants to challenge a former employee's eligibility for benefits, your best bet is to meet with an attorney who handles unemployment appeals to discuss your options.  To that end, I represent both applicants and employers in unemployment appeals.  Please call (763) 450-9494 today to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.

WARNING: The information contained in this blog post does not constitute legal advice and may not be applicable to your situation.  Reading this blog post does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Baland Law Office, P.L.L.C.  Also, Tim is licensed only in state and federal courts in Minnesota.  As such, any information provided in this blog post pertains only to those jurisdictions.  Further, you should always discuss your situation with an attorney before taking any action based on what you may read in this blog.  To that end, please call (763) 450-9494 to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.

 
 
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There were three decisions on unemployment benefits this week issued by the Minnesota Court of Appeals.  The second case is unique because the Relator is represented by an attorney, which is always a good idea when appealing to the Court of Appeals.  The third case is unique because the Department of Employment and Economic Development requested reversal, admitting that the hearing was not fair.

1. A15-0433, Leola Banks, Relator, vs. Regions Hospital, Respondent, Department of Employment and Economic Development, Respondent.

Leola Banks’s supervisor discharged Banks from her employment at Regions Hospital after Banks signed prescription-drug order forms as a licensed pharmacist even though she was not a licensed pharmacist. Banks appeals from an unemployment-law judge’s determination that she is ineligible to receive unemployment benefits because she was discharged for employment misconduct. Because Banks’s misrepresenting herself as a pharmacist to order drugs constitutes employment misconduct, we affirm. 

2. A15-0305, Paul Hecimovich, Relator, vs. Always There Staffing, Inc., Respondent, Department of Employment and Economic Development, Respondent.

Paul Hecimovich quit his job as a scrap-iron laborer after one week because his boss yelled at him. An unemployment-law judge (ULJ) determined that Hecimovich is ineligible for unemployment benefits because he quit his employment and the statutory 30-day unsuitability exception does not apply. Hecimovich appeals, arguing that because his employment was unsuitable under Minnesota Statutes section 268.035, subdivision 23a (2014), he need not show that the reason he quit his job was its unsuitability

Hecimovich did not quit his job because it was unsuitable. He quit because it was intolerable to his personal sensibilities. In Wiley v. Robert Half Int’l, Inc., we recognized that the word “because” in the 30-day unsuitability exception establishes that the statute requires an applicant to show a causal relationship between the job’s unsuitability and the applicant’s reason for quitting. 834 N.W.2d 567, 570–71 (Minn. App. 2013). Although the employment’s unsuitability need not be the sole or even the primary reason why the employee quit, it must be one reason. Id. at 571.

Hecimovich’s only reason for quitting was his boss’s yelling at him. The yelling is unrelated to the job’s unsuitability under the statute, and Hecimovich therefore does not establish the required causal relationship. Hecimovich’s counsel conceded at oral argument that reversing the ULJ’s eligibility determination would require us to overturn our decision in Wiley. We decline the invitation to do so.  Accordingly, we affirm the ULJ’s determination.

3.  A15-0703, Patrick H. Horan, Relator, v. Centerline Charter Corp., Respondent, Department of Employment and Economic Development, Respondent.

Relator Patrick H. Horan challenges a decision by an unemployment-law judge, affirmed on reconsideration, determining him ineligible for unemployment benefits. Respondent Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (the department) has filed a letter requesting reversal of the unemployment-law judge’s decision. Horan’s employer, respondent Centerline Charter Corp., has not filed an appellate brief or a response to the department’s letter. Because we agree with the department that the unemployment-law judge did not provide a fair hearing to Horan and that the unemployment-law judge’s decision is not supported by the evidence in the record, we reverse.

If you are denied unemployment benefits, or are an employer who wants to challenge a former employee's eligibility for benefits, your best bet is to meet with an attorney who handles unemployment appeals to discuss your options.  To that end, I represent both applicants and employers in unemployment appeals.  Please call (763) 450-9494 today to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.

WARNING: The information contained in this blog post does not constitute legal advice and may not be applicable to your situation.  Reading this blog post does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Baland Law Office, P.L.L.C.  Also, Tim is licensed only in state and federal courts in Minnesota.  As such, any information provided in this blog post pertains only to those jurisdictions.  Further, you should always discuss your situation with an attorney before taking any action based on what you may read in this blog.  To that end, please call (763) 450-9494 to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.



 
 
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In a published decision issued on Monday 11/9/15, the Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled that corporate landlords -- including limited partnerships -- must be represented by a licensed attorney in district court.

A15-0496: Hinckley Square Associates, Respondent, vs. Leah D. Cervene, Appellant.

On appeal from a judgment ordering her eviction, appellant Leah Cervene argues that the district court erred in denying her motion to dismiss the complaint because 2 respondent-landlord Hinckley Square Associates (“Hinckley Square”) is a limited partnership and did not appear through licensed counsel in district court. Because we conclude that limited partnerships must be represented by counsel in district court, we reverse the district court’s judgment evicting Cervene.

Cervene also argues that the district court erred (1) in declining to dismiss the case because of Hinckley Square’s failure to give proper notices required by federal regulations and the parties’ lease; (2) in finding that she owed the full amount claimed in the complaint, despite Hinckley Square’s failure to adjust her rent obligation according to her income as required by federal regulations and the parties’ lease; and (3) in finding that Hinckley Square effectively increased her rent despite failing to give a one-rental period notice. Because we conclude that Hinckley Square should not have been allowed to appear in court without licensed counsel, we do not reach the merits of these issues.

The Appeals Court concluded that "the district court erred in allowing Hinckley Square, a limited partnership, to proceed through trial without a licensed attorney."  The Court of Appeals "also conclude[d] that the participation of the nonattorneys is not a curable defect," meaning that it cannot be corrected after the fact.

The message for corporate landlords is clear: a corporate landlord, whether a corporation, partnership, or any form of business entity, must be represented by an attorney in district court.  An eviction is an action in district court, and so corporate landlords must be represented by an attorney, even in an eviction.  That has always been the rule, and why Hinckley Square Associates thought it didn't need an attorney is beyond me.

Baland Law Office, P.L.L.C. represents both landlords and tenants in eviction actions, and in other litigation related to the landlord-tenant legal relationship.  Please call (763) 450-9494 to schedule an appointment to discuss your situation today!

WARNING: The information contained in this blog post does not constitute legal advice and may not be applicable to your situation.  Tim is licensed to practice law only in Minnesota, and the information contained in this blog post may not apply to jurisdictions outside of Minnesota.  Further, reading this blog post does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Baland Law Office, P.L.L.C.  You should always discuss your situation with an attorney before taking any action based on what you may read in this blog.  To that end, please call (763) 450-9494 to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.



 
 
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Tim is presenting at the second annual Landlord-Tenant Law-Essential-Issues-St-Cloud-MN.  The seminar is on Tuesday 12/8/15 from 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.  Tim is presenting on the process of evicting a tenant -- from filling out the eviction action complaint to appearing in court to dealing with the personal property that the tenant has left behind -- in a presentation titled Evictions: Excuses and Traps When Things Go Bad.

Here is a link to the seminar:

https://store.sterlingeducation.com/seminar/15MN12313.

Please call me at (763) 450-9494 if you would like to attend and I will arrange for a special discount on registration for you.

Baland Law Office, P.L.L.C. represents both landlords and tenants in eviction actions, and in other litigation related to the landlord-tenant legal relationship.  Please call (763) 450-9494 to schedule an appointment to discuss your situation today!

WARNING: The information contained in this blog post does not constitute legal advice and may not be applicable to your situation.  Tim is licensed to practice law only in Minnesota, and the information contained in this blog post may not apply to jurisdictions outside of Minnesota.  Further, reading this blog post does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Baland Law Office, P.L.L.C.  You should always discuss your situation with an attorney before taking any action based on what you may read in this blog.  To that end, please call (763) 450-9494 to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.