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Dawson v. Employment Dept.

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 07-25-2012
Case #: A148411
Armstrong, J. for the Court; Brewer, J.; and Duncan, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://courts.oregon.gov/Publications/A148411.pdf

Employment Law: Employment benefits were rightfully denied when claimant was wantonly negligent, indifferent to consequences, and should have been aware that his decision to drive under the influence of intoxicants would violate an employer's expectations of an employee.

Dawson sought review of an order issued by the Employment Appeals Board (Boardo) denying his application for employment benefits on the grounds that he had been discharged from his employment for misconduct. Dawson was fired from his job after failing to report to work because he was incarcerated for driving offenses. Dawson argued on appeal that he was unlawfully denied a 48-hour period between being found guilty and being sentenced and, as a result, he was unable to give proper notice to his employer and properly mitigate the effects of his incarceration on his employment. The Court of Appeals rejected this argument, and found impertinent his assertion that he had been a reliable employee who would have been rehired by his employer. The Court concluded that the real issues were (1) whether Dawson was wantonly negligent and indifferent to consequences when he decided to drive impaired, and (2) whether Dawson was conscious of his conduct and should have known that his actions would violate an employer's expectations of an employee. The Court answered both issues affirmatively and therefore concluded that Dawson was rightfully denied employment benefits under ORS 657.176. Affirmed.