Wisconsin Labor and Industry Review Commission --
Summary of Wisconsin Court Decision relating to Unemployment Insurance

Subject: Donna J. Parker v. LIRC and Davis & Kuelthau, S.C., Case 02 CV 2602 (Wis. Cir. Ct., Milwaukee Co., November 1, 2002)

Digest Codes: SW 800  BR 335.04 

Claimant was offered a job on May 1, but she told the offering employer she needed time to think about it due to concerns about parking and insurance. She then never informed the offering employer of a decision. The offering employer subsequently telephoned the claimant on May 8, leaving a message on her answering machine telling her that they wanted to know her decision, and on May 9, leaving a message asking her to contact them that day. The claimant did not call back, asserting that she did not hear the messages until after 5 PM on May 9 and thus assumed the offer had lapsed. The LID, ATD and LIRC all held that claimant had been offered suitable work which she refused without good cause and that she was therefore ineligible. Waiver of repayment of the overpayment was also rejected, as there was no department error and claimant was also partly at fault in that she had failed to disclose her refusal of work when she filed her weekly claim. Claimant appealed, continuing to rely on her position that she had never refused the offer of work and that the offer had lapsed before she was able to get back to the employer.

Held: Affirmed. LIRC's findings are supported by the record, which clearly indicates that claimant had failed to respond to an offer of employment for over 8 days and that she had adequate time to do so. The decision not to waive repayment of the overpayment is also upheld, the Court noting that while in another case an ALJ found that claimant had not engaged in an act of concealment, Wis. Stat. § 108.04(13)(f) provides that a claimant is “at fault” for purposes of repayment waiver issues if the claimant commits an act of concealment “or fails to provide correct and complete information to the department”.

Please note that this is a summary prepared by staff of the commission, not a verbatim reproduction of the court decision.

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