Wisconsin Labor and Industry Review Commission --
Summary of Wisconsin Court Decision relating to Unemployment Insurance


Subject: Ray Robbins v. LIRC and Service First Staffing, Inc., Case 10 CV 13473 (Wis. Cir. Ct., Milwaukee Co., February 9, 2011)

Digest Codes: VL 1015  VL 1025 - Labor Supplier / Temporary Help Agency; VL 1015.01 - Distance to Work - Transportation and Travel

The employee worked around 90 days for the employer, a temporary help firm. During this time period the employee worked for one client of the employer, and used his automobile to commute to and from work. The employee’s automobile eventually became inoperable, at which point the employee informed the employer he might not be able to get to the work site. The employer told the employee that he would call the employee if he had any more assignments for the employee. The employee subsequently informed the employer that he could not get to the work site, and the employee did not work for the employer thereafter.
The commission held that the separation was a quit by the employee. The commission reasoned that the employee, by ending the only assignment available for him at the time, was the moving party in the separation from employment.

Held: AFFIRMED. First, the court gave great weight deference to the commission’s conclusion that the employee terminated the employment, such that the commission’s determination will be upheld if reasonable. The court noted that the burden of establishing that the commission’s determination is unreasonable is upon the party seeking to overturn that determination. The court found reasonable the commission’s determination that it was the employee who terminated the employment. The court noted it was the employee who indicated to the employer that he could no longer make it to the job site (because he had to junk his car), and that he made this statement to the employer after the latter had indicated it wanted him to continue his employment.


Please note that this is a summary prepared by staff of the commission, not a verbatim reproduction of the court decision.

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