Briefs Using Firac Method

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Mitchell v. Lovington Good Samaritan Center, Inc., 555 P.2d 696 (1976).

Facts: The appellee was terminated from the Lovington Good Samaritan Center, Inc. on June 4, 1974. On June 12, 1974 Mrs. Mitchell applied for unemployment compensation benefits. She was initially disqualified from seven weeks of benefits by a deputy of the Unemployment Security Commission. Mrs. Mitchell then filed an appeal, and the Appeal Tribunal reversed the deputy’s decision. Mrs. Mitchell’s benefits were reinstated on August 28, 1974. On September 13, 1974 the Center appealed the decision made by the Appeal tribunal to the whole Commission. The Commission overruled the Appeal Tribunal and reinstated the seven week disqualification period. Mrs. Mitchell then applied for and was granted certiorari from the decision of the Commission to the District Court of Bernalillo County. The District Court reversed the Commission’s decision and ordered the benefits to be reinstated. From the judgment of the District Court, the Center appeals.

Issue: The issue is whether Mrs. Mitchell’s actions constituted misconduct under § 59-9-5(b), N.M.S.A. 1953.

Rule: The term ‘misconduct’ is not defined in the Unemployment Compensation Law. The Wisconsin Supreme Court found that in a prior case no statutory definition of misconduct existed, and they formulated a definition for such. The Supreme Court of New Mexico adopts that definition, and hold that Mrs. Mitchell’s acts constituted misconduct.

Applying: Mrs. Mitchell’s insubordination, improper attire, name calling, and other conduct evinced a willful disregard of the interests of the Center. Although each separate incident was not sufficient enough to conclude misconduct, when taken in totality Mrs. Mitchell’s conduct sufficiently can be classified as misconduct when under the definition adopted by the court.

Conclusion: The decision of the district court is reversed and the decision of the Commission is reinstated.

Rodman v. New Mexico...
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