Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Current v. Wada Farms Partnership

Supreme Court of Idaho

December 4, 2017

DENNIS B. CURRENT, Claimant-Appellant,
v.
WADA FARMS PARTNERSHIP, Employer, and IDAHO DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, Respondent.

         2017 Opinion No. 122

         Appeal from the Industrial Commission of the State of Idaho.

         The decision of the Commission is affirmed. Costs on appeal are awarded to the respondent. Request for attorney fees on appeal is denied.

          Dennis B. Current, Blackfoot, pro se.

          Hon. Lawrence G. Wasden, Idaho Attorney General, Boise, attorney for respondent. Douglas A. Werth argued.

          JONES, Justice.

         I. Nature of the Case

         Dennis B. Current ("Current") appeals an Idaho Industrial Commission (the "Commission") decision that determined he was ineligible for unemployment benefits based on willful underreporting of his earnings to the Idaho Department of Labor ("IDOL"). IDOL discovered wage discrepancies between the amount reported by Current and the amount reported by his employer, Wada Farms Partnership ("Wada Farms"), for the weeks ending March 5, 2016, and March 12, 2016. On appeal, Current disputes that he "willfully" misrepresented his wages.

         II. Factual and Procedural Background

         Since September 2009, Current has worked for Wada Farms on a seasonal basis. Due to the nature of his employment, his hours varied weekly. When Current was not working regularly, he sought unemployment benefits.

         Sometime around April 2016, IDOL requested wage information from Wada Farms for the weeks ending November 7, 2015 through March 19, 2016. On April 26, 2016, IDOL sent Current a letter, notifying him that the wages that he had reported for the weeks ending March 5, 2016 and March 12, 2016, differed from the wages reported by Wada Farms; specifically, for the week ending March 5, 2016, Current reported $330.00 in wages, while Wada Farms reported $397.51 in wages, and for the week ending March 12, 2016, Current reported $231.00 in wages and Wada Farms reported $313.59 in wages. The letter afforded Current an opportunity to explain the discrepancies. However, Current maintains that he never received the letter.

         On May 10, 2016, IDOL issued an eligibility determination ruling, finding that Current willfully misstated a material fact to obtain unemployment benefits. As part of the ruling, IDOL: (1) determined that Current would not be eligible for benefits from May 8, 2016 through May 6, 2017; (2) sought repayment of the benefits that Current received to which he was not entitled; and (3) issued a civil penalty. Current appealed the eligibility determination, arguing that he did not willfully submit false facts or statements.

         In June 2016, the parties appeared for a telephonic hearing with the Appeals Examiner to determine whether Current willfully made a false statement or willfully failed to report a material fact in order to obtain unemployment insurance benefits. In response to questions regarding the discrepancy between Current's reported wages, and Wada Farms' reported wages, Current explained that Wada Farms' new payroll system, Kronos, was electronic, and he was also enrolled in direct deposit. As a result, Current noted that he did not receive a paystub, and, at the time, he maintained that he had no way to log onto the system to review his hours. Current admitted that he estimated his hours, and deducted hours for lunch. In a discussion regarding Kronos, Current testified as follows:

Current: I was able to log onto Kronos after . . . May 26th . . . But prior to that I was not able to access my time, my hours, or anything like that and I just had to guesstimate and I did mention that to some of your people over the phone and they said that that was fine, that I could guesstimate my time. . . .
Appeals Examiner: Okay. So when they told you [that] you could estimate your time, did they tell you that you should go back and correct your earnings once you find out - - once you found out what you were actually paid?
Current: Well, I think they mentioned something like that, but . . . like I said, I haven't been able to even access a pay stub until May 18, 2016. . . .

         Current also disclosed that he had been able to obtain printed copies of his paystubs in the past, but that ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.