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Vicki L. Vanderberg v. Board of Review

June 7, 2012

VICKI L. VANDERBERG, APPELLANT,
v.
BOARD OF REVIEW, DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND LUCY COVELLO, M.D., P.A., RESPONDENTS.



On appeal from the Board of Review, Department of Labor, Docket No. 290,563.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted April 16, 2012

Before Judges Parrillo and Alvarez.

Vicki Vanderberg appeals from a February 22, 2011 final determination of the Department of Labor's Board of Review (Board) denying her unemployment compensation benefits. We affirm.

The Deputy Director of the Division of Unemployment and Disability Insurance (Deputy) found Vanderberg disqualified because she voluntarily left employment on May 23, 2010, as a result of her mother's illness. By statute, an employee who leaves "work voluntarily without good cause attributable to such work," is ineligible for benefits. N.J.S.A. 43:21-5(a). The Deputy noted that personal reasons, such as the one in this case, are not "good cause attributable to the work."

Vanderberg nonetheless appealed the determination, and a hearing was conducted on August 9, 2010. On August 11, the Appeal Tribunal affirmed the Deputy's determination. Vanderberg then appealed to the Board.

Vanderberg's last day of work, according to her testimony, was May 23, 2010. She then left to travel to Arizona to care for her gravely ill mother. On Vanderberg's last day, she had informed her employer of her plans by leaving a message on the employer's answering machine. She told her employer that she did not know the length of time she would be out-of-state because of the nature of her mother's illness. Vanderberg left another message on May 31, on her employer's cell phone, informing her that she was still unsure about her return date.

On June 4, Vanderberg received a letter from her employer advising that she was being replaced.

The employer, Dr. Lucy Covello, had only one employee - Vanderberg. Covello testified at the Appeal Tribunal hearing that she would have accommodated Vanderberg if she had been given even an approximate return date. By June 4, however, Vanderberg had missed eleven days of work, and Covello could no longer maintain her office without a replacement. In response to Covello's June 4 letter, Vanderberg wrote back on June 5, and indicated she would return to work on June 10, 2010, and did in fact return to New Jersey on that date.

Now on appeal, Vanderberg raises the following points for our consideration:

THE BOARD OF REVIEW, NEW JERSEY DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, ACTED [ARBITRARILY] AND UNREASONABLY IN FAILING TO FOLLOW ITS REGULATIONS, SPECIFICALLY, IN FAILING TO ABIDE BY [N.J.A.C.] 12:17-9.11(b)

POINT I

APPELLANT'S TERMINATION BY ...


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