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Delgado v. Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board

Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle

February 4, 2014

ANDY DELGADO, Appellant,
v.
UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE APPEAL BOARD, Appellee.

Submitted: November 15, 2013

Andy L. Delgado, Appellant, Tamarac, Florida, pro se.

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 4th day of February 2014, upon consideration of Appellant's Appeal from the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board (the "Board"), it appears to the Court that:

1. Appellant Andy Delgado ("Appellant") began collecting unemployment benefits starting November 2008 after being laid off.[1] In June 2009 Appellant moved from Felton, Delaware to Florida to seek work.[2] Appellant understood that he was put in an unemployment benefits program for people who reside out of state.[3]

2. On October 13, 2011, Appellant was mailed five overpayment determinations.[4] Each determination contained the following language:

"This determination becomes final on 10/23/11 unless a written appeal is filed. Your appeal must be received or postmarked on or before the date indicated. If the last date to file an appeal falls on a Saturday, Sunday or Legal Holiday, the appeal will be acceptable the next business day."[5]

3. Following the receipt of the determinations, Appellant asserts that he spoke with a member of the Dover Division of Unemployment office who informed him they had "made a mistake and put [him] in the wrong program."[6] He was told he needed to pay the office before he could be placed in the proper program.[7] Appellant describes the conversation with the Division of Unemployment as follows:

She explained to me if [I] wanted to appeal or not. I asked what the difference is. She would reply if [I] appealed it would be a long process If I didn't it would take less time to fix the error since they made the mistake on their part and non mine. So I didn't appeal since knowing she said the situation was going to be resolved.[8]

Appellant did not feel at the time that he should have to pay any money, but claims that he was given the impression during the conversation that the amount of money the Division would want him to repay would be low.[9]

4. Appellant claims he received another letter from the Division of Unemployment at some point after October 2011 informing him that he was eligible again for unemployment benefits. [10] Appellant received additional payments at half the rate he normally received. Appellant asserts that he assumed this was paying his debt to the Division of Unemployment.

5. Appellant says he was surprised and dismayed to find that his debt to the State of Delaware was over $20, 000.00.[11] He maintains he is not in a position to be able to pay this amount and that it is unfair because it "wasn't [his] fault."[12] Appellant states, "I admit to getting those 10 extra payments of $165 each [after he was informed of the issues with his payments] I will own up to those 10 payments and be glad to pay that back. But the rest I was entitled to that cause I qualified for it."[13] In his decision not to appeal, Appellant argues that he feels the Division of Unemployment representative "manipulated my decision by not telling me the whole information that I needed at the time we had our conversation. I would of appealed at that very moment if I knew the truth of what the entire process would be."[14]

Appellant appealed the five overpayment determinations in a letter dated November 16, 2012, and ...


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