PAUL TALASKA, Complainant
C. A. T. S. NATIONWIDE, Respondent
An administrative law judge for the Equal Rights Division of the Department of Industry, Labor and Human Relations issued an Order of Dismissal in the above-captioned matter on December 17, 1993. Complainant filed a timely petition for review by the commission.
Based upon a review of the file in its entirety, the Labor and Industry Review Commission issues the following:
That the Order of Dismissal issued by the administrative law judge (copy attached) is affirmed and shall stand as the FINAL ORDER herein.
Dated and mailed February 8, 1994
/s/ Pamela I. Anderson, Chairman
/s/ Richard T. Kreul, Commissioner
James R. Meier, Commissioner
In his petition for commission review, the complainant argues that he had good cause for his failure to appear at the hearing scheduled in this matter for December 16, 1993 because his current employer, United Parcel Service, would not permit him to attend. In support of this contention, he encloses a letter which purports to be from that employer's manager which states that during the busy Christmas season it is imperative that drivers for UPS be at work every day. The complainant further alleges that when he realized he would not be permitted to leave work he contacted the Equal Rights Division in an effort to reschedule his hearing but was unable to do so. He gives no indication when this conversation took place or with whom and there is no record of it in the file.
Although the complainant did not submit his reasons for his failure to appear in writing within ten days to the administrative law judge as required by Wisconsin Administrative Code Ind 88.15, the commission has considered those reasons. A new hearing may be ordered if the party who fails to appear shows good cause for that failure. Good cause is a reason, which, if established by competent evidence, would amount to circumstances beyond the individual's control or which otherwise prevented or made it unreasonable for him to appear. Being scheduled for work does not demonstrate such good cause. In this case, the complainant had almost two months notice of the date of the rescheduled hearing. Parties are expected to take time off from work to attend scheduled hearings. At the time that his postponement was allegedly denied, he had an obligation to make whatever arrangements were necessary to appear and proceed at the hearing as scheduled. The dismissal decision is therefore affirmed.
178 / T
cc: Salvatore C. Quarino
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