Here’s another reason to act fast when an employee complains about offensive graffiti in the workplace: He can quit and collect unemployment.
Recent case: Irvin Cook, who is black, quit his job a month or so after a co-worker painted a Confederate flag on Cook’s locker and penciled in the word “Cotton” as Cook’s middle name on the locker name tag. Cook said he complained daily, but nothing was done.
When he applied for unemployment compensation benefits, his former employer said he had quit voluntarily.
The court disagreed. It said Cook was justified in quitting under the circumstances and awarded him the benefits. (Belle Tire Distributors v. Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, No. 97102, Court of Appeals of Ohio, 2012)
- How to Fire an Employee the Legal Way: 6 Termination Guidelines
- Check calendar when employee files lawsuit covered by employment agreement
- One stupid comment from boss doesn't automatically create sex bias liability
- Compensation is probably a mystery to your employees
- Use formal application processes to ward off failure-to-hire/promote lawsuits