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Graham v. Zenith Products Corp.

Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle

November 22, 2013

CLIFFORD GRAHAM, Appellant,
v.
ZENITH PRODUCTS CORPORATION and UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE APPEAL BOARD, Appellees.

Submitted: August 26, 2013.

On Appeal from a Decision of the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board.

Clifford Graham, Wilmington, Delaware, pro se, Appellant.

Kathleen F. McDonough, Esquire and Janine L. Hochberg, Esquire, Wilmington, Delaware, Attorneys for Appellee, Zenith Products Corporation.

James T. Wakley, Esquire, Deputy Attorney General, Department of Justice, Wilmington, Delaware, Attorney for the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board.

ORDER

Richard R. Cooch, R.J.

This 22nd day of November, 2013, on appeal from a decision of the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board, it appears to the Court that:

1. Appellant Clifford Graham ("Appellant") worked for Appellee Zenith Products Corporation ("Employer") from November 14, 2011 until December 13, 2012. Appellant was terminated for violating Employer's absence policy which states an employee that is absent more than two days without calling will be considered to have voluntarily quit effective two hours beyond the start time of the second day.[1] Appellant filed for and was granted unemployment benefits by a claims deputy. Employer timely appealed this claim.
2. On January 28, 2013, an Appeals Referee heard Employer's appeal. On January 31, 2013, the Appeals Referee reversed the claims deputy's decision and denied unemployment benefits on the basis that Appellant was terminated for "just cause."[2] Appellant timely appealed to the Board and a hearing was held on March 20, 2013. On March 28, 2013, the Board upheld the Appeals Referee's decision holding Appellant's "failure to call in two consecutive days in a row constitutes job abandonment."[3] Appellant timely appealed the Board's decision to this Court.
3. On July 9, 2013, Appellant submitted his opening brief, which reads, in its entirety:
To LEt you KNOW I FEEl I WAS tREAtED UNFAIR pEoplE gEt sick WE HAVE NO CoNtRol OVER it ANYWAY I WAS sick ONE YEAR pRAYER TO This AND WAS OUt FROM woRk 6 DAys DIDNt CAll OFF FROM woRk Just BRouth My DoctER EXCUSE Back to woRk with ME AND Just got A poiNt AND thAt whAt They toly ME to Do
Clifford Graham
P.S WEll I DONt ThiNk A pERsoN Shounld Lose ThERE JOB BECAUSE ThERE SICK [sic][4]
4. On appeal, the Board advised the Court that it would not file an Answering Brief because "[t]he underlying case is on the merits and the Board does not intend to take a position as to the merits of the case."[5] Appellee ...

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