Backdating an unemployment application in pennsylvania

As the Majority aptly notes, section 65.43a(e) of the regulations of the Department of Labor and Industry (Department) permits a claimant to backdate an application for two weeks if the "[s]ickness ...of a member of the claimant's immediate family" prevented an earlier filing. Code § 65.43a(e).] have prevented a claimant from filing a claim for compensation within the time allowed in subsection (a) or (b) or § 65.43, the longest extension applies. Before the referee, Claimant testified that in the beginning of May 2012, his mother, aged 82, became "seriously ill" with "cancer and a brain tumor." (Certified Record (C. 7.) Claimant later explained that his mother had to have surgery to remove a portion of one of her lungs. At the same time, Claimant stated that his son, aged 7, had "serious developmental issues that ... Additionally, Claimant indicated that his maternal uncle, with whom he was "very tight," was rushed to the hospital in early June, that the uncle nearly died, and that the uncle remained in the hospital much of that month.

Accordingly, we affirm in part and reverse in part the Board's order.

AND NOW, this 9th day of July, 2013, the order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review is hereby AFFIRMED in part and REVERSED in part.

Falcone (Claimant), pro se, petitions for review of an order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board).

For the reasons set forth below, we affirm in part and reverse in part. 1-2.) In addition, Claimant also requested backdating of his claims for the weeks ending May 26, 2012, through June 30, 2012. 3.) Claimant appealed the Service Center's determination, and a Referee conducted an evidentiary hearing. (Id.) He also testified that on June 30, 2012, he applied for unemployment benefits via the internet. at 3-4.) He testified that he waited until the end of June to apply for benefits because a number of his close relatives had severe medical issues. at 4.) Specifically, Claimant testified that, since the beginning of May 2012, his eighty-two-year-old mother's health declined as a result of cancer.

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The Board affirmed the Unemployment Compensation Referee's (Referee) decision, denying Claimant's request for backdating of his application for unemployment compensation benefits and claims weeks. 7 at 3.) Claimant testified that Employer laid him off and that his last day of work was May 14, 2012.

It is unclear from Claimant's sparse brief the legal basis for his contention that he is entitled to more than two weeks backdating. Section 65.43a(h) of the regulations, however, allows for more generous backdating when two or more "reasons" for extended filing exist. have prevented a claimant from filing a claim for compensation within the time allowed" and "[i]f adherence to the longest extension would be inequitable to the claimant, the sum of the applicable extensions applies." Id. Here, Claimant asserts only one reason for extended filing — sickness or death of an immediate family member. One may argue, therefore, that subsection (h) is inapplicable, as it requires at least two reasons for extended filing to exist in order to be entitled to more generous backdating.

As discussed above, the Department's regulations generally permit only two weeks of backdating on account of sickness or death of an immediate family member. Claimant does, however, assert that three different family members were ill during the relevant time period, although the Referee only made findings as to two immediate family members who were ill.

The Board, therefore, erred in not backdating his application for benefits (and related claims weeks) by two weeks.

Our analysis, however, does not end here, as Claimant contends that he was entitled to have his application for benefits backdated by six weeks (i.e., to May 13, 2012), and his claims backdated to the weeks ending May 26, 2012, through June 30, 2012. Specifically, "[i]f two or more of the reasons enumerated ...

Unlike Section 65.43a(e) of the regulations, in order for the provisions of Section 65.43a(h) to apply, a claimant must establish that the proffered reason actually prevented the claimant from filing.

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