Unemployment Insurance Benefits Cannot be Denied Based on Unclear Evidence

The Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior Court recently reversed and remanded a decision from the Board of Review which upheld a denial of unemployment benefits. The Court, in Regis v. Board of Review, held that an employer did not present sufficient evidence to the Board of Review to justify a claim of “severe misconduct” after firing the employee for going to a funeral of a family member and thereby exceeding the number of unexcused absences allowed to employees. The employer contested the employee’s claim for benefits arguing that he did not present sufficient proof that a funeral he attended was for an immediate family member. The Court concluded that the relationship between the employee and the deceased was unclear, and that further testimony and evidence was required in order to deny the employee his benefits.