Can I get unemployment if fired for misconduct but the situation could have been prevented if the manager was following their own company policy?

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Can I get unemployment if fired for misconduct but the situation could have been prevented if the manager was following their own company policy?

Fired for getting into it with a customer. Asked Administrative Asst. for help; she said she was too busy. The general manager was on the roof with maintenance changing air filters. Situation occurred between 11:30 am and 1:30 pm. Company policy states during this time all managers should be on the floor to assist customers as well as assist employees. The manager’s ignorance of company policy forced the situation to ensue, preventable if they followed their own policy.

Asked on May 12, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Oklahoma

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, if you were considered to be fired "for cause"--such as for yourself violating employer policy, for insubordination, for arguing with (or fighting with) customers, etc.--you are not eligible for unemployment. The law does not require employers to provide assistance to their employees or to follow their own policy directives in this regard, and does not exonerate employees for actions that would constitute grounds for "for cause" termination simply because managers were not around.

You can and should apply for unemployment--as long as you do not lie about any factual circumstances, even if you are denied, there should be no penalty. It may be the case that the unemployment office will consider your termination not for cause, or it may be that your employer will not even claim it to be for cause--just bear in mind that technically, from what you write, what happened would be grounds for a for cause termination and denial of  unemployment benefits.


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