Failure to follow directive was willful misconduct; benefits denial upheld
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Friday, June 26, 2020

Failure to follow directive was willful misconduct; benefits denial upheld

By Payroll and Entitlements Editorial Staff

After the claimant, a dental assistant, refused on two different occasions to sanitize dental hygienist instruments, she was discharged. The Board determined that she was not entitled to benefits. On appeal, the claimant argued that as a dental assistant she was concerned she did not have the professional ability to sterilize the instruments a hygienist uses. The court upheld the Board’s decision that the failure to follow a directive can constitute willful misconduct. The claimant here did not cite any law or code that would support her position that the directive was unlawful or reasonable. Therefore, the court affirmed the Board’s decision denying benefits (Michelle P. Rhine v. UCBR, Pa. Comwth. Ct., No. 1281 C.D. 2019, April 17, 2020).

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