Code of Maine Rules
12 - Labor
12 172 - Maine Unemployment Insurance Commission
Chapter 17 - Voluntary Leaving

Universal Citation: 12 ME Code Rules § 17

12 DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

172 MAINE UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE COMMISSION

Chapter 17: VOLUNTARY LEAVING

1. Leaves of absence.

When making determinations under subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law in cases involving a leave of absence, factors to be considered may include, but will not be limited to, the following:

A. Whether the claimant received any wages, continua­tion of health or other insurance coverage or other benefits while on leave of absence.

B. The claimant's seniority status with the employer.

C. The employer's policy concerning the granting of leaves of absence.

D. The employment status of the claimant at the end of the leave of absence.

E. Any contractual agreements between the claimant and the employer.

F. The reason that the leave of absence was requested.

G. Whether the leave of absence was for a definite or indefinite period.

H. If applicable, the reason that the claimant filed a claim for unemployment benefits prior to the end of the leave of absence.

I. The employer's and the claimant's intentions with regard to the claimant's employment status at the termination of the leave of absence.

2. Leaving work due to on-the-job illness/injury.

A. Determinations. When making determinations whether the claimant's leaving was with good cause attributable to the employment under subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law in cases involving an illness or injury which occurs on the job, factors to be considered may include, but will not be limited to, the following:

1. The circumstances under which the illness/injury occurred.

2. Whether the employer violated any govern­mental safety standards.

3. Whether the claimant violated any govern­mental safety standards or employer safety standards or rules.

4. Whether the claimant filed a claim for Workers' Compensation benefits.

B. Experience rating record. If a claimant leaves work due to an on-the-job illness or injury, factors to be considered may include, but will not be limited to, the following in determining whether the employer's experience rating record will be charged with benefits paid under sub­section 3(A)(1) of section 1221 of the Employment Security Law:

1. The circumstances under which the illness or injury occurred.

2. Whether the illness or injury was caused by a condition of which the employer knew or should have known.

3. Leaving work due to illness.

A claimant who leaves work due to the illness or disability of the claimant or an immediate family member and who files an initial or additional claim before the claimant is able or available to return to work and request reemployment shall have the determina­tion of eligibility under section 1193 deferred until such time as the claimant is able to work and available for full-time work. A determination shall be rendered which denies benefits under subsection 3 of section 1192 of the Employment Security Law and which gives notice of the deferral of a qualification determination under section 1193 of the Employment Security Law.

4. Leaving work due to wages.

When making determinations under subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law in cases in which the claimant's reasons for leaving employment were due in whole or in part to wages, factors to be considered may include, but will not be limited to, the following:

A. Whether the claimant was paid wages which were in compliance with the State and/or Federal wage laws.

B. The rate of pay which the employer agreed to pay, and the reason(s) that the employer did not pay at the agreed upon rate.

C. The reason for any reduction in pay during the period of employment.

D. Whether there had been any substantial changes in the claimant's assigned work duties without a corresponding change in the rate of pay.

E. Whether wages were paid at agreed upon times, and if not, the reason(s) for late payment.

F. Whether the claimant has communicated to the employer or a governmental body that there may be a violation of wage laws.

5. Leaving work due to work schedule.

When making determinations under subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law in cases in which a claimant's reasons for leaving employment were related to his or her work schedule, factors to be considered include, but will not be limited to, the following:

A. The claimant's previous work schedule(s).

B. The customary hours of employment for this type of work and for the claimant's co-workers or whether the number of hours worked exceeded those which are customary for similar work in the area.

C. Whether the work schedule was significantly different from the claimant's customary hours, and the reason for the change in the work schedule.

D. Whether the hours had been changed recently and whether the change was temporary or permanent.

E. Whether the work schedule had an adverse effect on the claimant's health or safety.

6. Leaving work due to harassment.

In making determinations under subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law, when it is known or believed that the claimant's reason for leaving employment was related to harassment, factors to be considered may include, but will not be limited to, the following:

A. The nature of the conduct.

B. The degree to which the conduct related to the employment.

C. Whether the conduct was repeated or was an isolated incident.

D. Whether the employer made any changes in the claimant's working conditions for retaliatory purposes.

E. How seriously the conduct was intended and/or perceived.

F. The efforts made by the employer and the claimant to control or adjust the situation.

G. The employment relationship between the claimant and the alleged harasser.

7. Leaving work to accept new employment.

For purposes of subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

A. "Good faith" means that the claimant intended to commence working at and to continue working at new employment.

B. "Accept new employment on a permanent full-time basis" means that the claimant had been affirmatively offered employment on a full-time basis by the new employer. The claimant does not actually have to commence work with the new employer if the new employer either has postponed or withdrawn the job offer. However, it must be shown that a bona fide offer of work existed at the time the claimant separated from employment.

8. Leaving work to accompany, follow or join spouse.

A. For purposes of subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

1. "Spouse" means a person to whom the claimant is legally married, or a person to whom the claimant was legally married within fourteen (14) days of arrival at the new place of residence.

2. "To accompany" means that the claimant will relocate at substantially the same time as the claimant's spouse.

3. "To follow" means that the claimant will relocate after the claimant's spouse has already left the area in which they previously resided.

4. "To join" means that the claimant will re­locate to a residence that the claimant's spouse has already established.

5. "New place of residence" means a place other than that in which the claimant most recently lived, and in which the claimant intends to live for an indefinite period of time, and which is located at such a distance from the previous employment so as to render commuting unreasonable.

B. For purposes of subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law, factors to be considered may include, but will not be limited to, the following in determining if the claimant is attached to the new labor market:

1. Whether and to what extent the claimant has made efforts to seek employment.

2. Whether there are any restrictions which would prevent the claimant from accepting an offer of suitable work.

9. Leaving work to protect the claimant from domestic abuse.

A. For purposes of subsection 1 of section 1193 of the Employment Security Law in cases in which the claimant's reason for leaving employment was that such leaving was necessary to protect the claimant from domestic abuse, the fact of domestic abuse may be established by a preponderance of the evidence.

B. The filing of a civil or criminal complaint against or the criminal conviction of the alleged abuser shall not be required as a prerequisite in order to establish the fact of domestic abuse. Nor shall such complaint or conviction be required as "reasonable efforts to preserve the employ­ment."

C. Upon an affirmative determination of the fact of domestic abuse, factors to be considered in determining whether the claimant made all reasonable efforts to preserve the employment may include, but will not be limited to, the following:

1. Whether the abuse occurred at the place of employment.

2. Whether, considering the type of abuse, the claimant was safe at the worksite and/or while commuting to and from the worksite.

3. Whether the abuser or the abuser's relatives or friends were co-workers of the claimant or otherwise present at the worksite.

4. Whether the abuse occurred as a consequence of the claimant going to work.

5. Whether the abuse itself interfered with the claimant's ability to work, travel, or prepare for work.

6. Whether the employer was informed either before or within a reasonable time after separation of the fact of the domestic abuse.

7. Whether the claimant needed to hide from the abuser at a shelter or elsewhere in order to be safe.

8. Whether the claimant left the geographic area to escape the abuse.

9. Whether the claimant requested reemployment with the employer upon return to the geo­graphic area after having left or upon the cessation of the domestic abuse.

D. Each determination under this rule must be decided on its own merits taking into consideration the specific facts and circumstances of the claimant, the employment, and the abuse involved.

10. Volunteering for lay off

For the purpose of subsection 1 of section 1193 (A)(5) of the Employment Security Law in cases where an employee volunteers to be part of the lay off or reduction in force, factors to be considered may include, but not be limited to:

1. Whether the employee is actually on a leave of absence mutually agreed upon by the employer and the employee.

2. Whether the employee's intent is to retire from the work with that employer, and if it was, then the separation would be considered a voluntary retirement under subsection 1 of section 1193 (B) of the Employment Security Law.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: 26 M.R.S.A. Sections 1082, 1192, and 1194

EFFECTIVE DATE:

October 2, 1989

AMENDED:

September 6, 1993

NON-SUBSTANTIVE CORRECTIONS:

June 20, 2000 - converted to MS Word

December 14, 2000 - Section 3 paragraph formatting

AMENDED:

March 27, 2004 - filing 2004-95

NON-SUBSTANTIVE CORRECTIONS:

June 17, 2004 - punctuation in Section 9.B

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