Isayeva v. Employment Dept.

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Administrative Law
  • Date Filed: 11-13-2014
  • Case #: A152848
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Nakamoto, J. for the Court; Armstrong, P.J.; & Egan, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

In evaluating whether an instance of workplace misconduct was an “isolated instance of poor judgment,” the proper standard is not whether an employer “could” conclude that the continued relationship impossible, but whether an employer would have so concluded.

Isayeva sought judicial review of an order by the Employment Appeals Board (EAB) which found Isayeva could not receive unemployment insurance benefits due to her discharge for misconduct. While employed, Isayeva had never refused to perform work or been reprimanded. In 2012, after 4 years without a raise, Isayeva refused to review a document until she received a raise. Isayeva was terminated for failing to perform the requested task. Because her termination was the result of misconduct, the Employment Department denied her unemployment benefits. The administrative law judge found she had been discharged, but not for misconduct, and awarded Isayeva benefits. The EAB reversed the administrative law judge’s finding. The Court held that EAB omitted findings which contributed to answering whether this was an “isolated instance of poor judgment,” as well as applied an incorrect standard as to whether the continued employment relationship was impossible. Accordingly, the EAB order lacked any substantial reason. Reversed and remanded.

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