New York court finds no willful misrepresentation where claimant readily provided Department with information
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Tuesday, June 2, 2020

New York court finds no willful misrepresentation where claimant readily provided Department with information

By Payroll and Entitlements Editorial Staff

The claimant, a paraprofessional for a school district, found a coworker's wallet in the lunchroom and hid it in the bathroom. Soon afterwards, she was arrested and charged with grand larceny in the fourth degree. The school district suspended her from her employment as a result. The claimant did not challenge the Board’s finding that she was separated from her employment due to misconduct but contended that substantial evidence did not support the finding that she made a willful false statement. The record established that the claimant spoke in Mandarin to a representative from the Department and informed the representative about the incident that led to her separation from employment, including No. 530142, April 23, 2020.that she was arrested on the charge of grand larceny; however, she denied being guilty of the charges. Thereafter, the claimant readily provided the Department with a court document which reflected that she had already pled guilty to criminal mischief and disorderly conduct and was required to perform five days of community service. Notwithstanding the inconsistent information provided by claimant and the court document provided to the Department, the court ruled that the claimant did not withhold any information regarding the nature of her conviction. In fact, she provided the pertinent information regarding her conviction. Accordingly, the Board's decision was reversed as to the issue of a willful misrepresentation to obtain benefits (In re Hua Fan, N.Y. Sup. Ct., App. Div., Third Dept., No. 530142, April 23, 2020).

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