The Impact Of Social Media On Unemployment Insurance Benefits


Category / Social Media

The Impact Of Social Media On Unemployment Insurance Benefits

Unemployment Insurance Benefits

Social media has become the most common way to connect – even in the workplace, which could be potential for trouble with unemployment insurance benefits.

An employee that’s been discharged for social media misconduct at work might be disqualified from receiving unemployment insurance benefits.

When social media is a factor, the state rulings on the eligibility of unemployment insurance benefits can be varied. The reason the rulings are so different is because statutes, policies, and precedents that govern eligibility for unemployment compensation vary from state to state.

What’s typical of all social media related UI cases is they are focused on the former employee’s words, instead of their performance. Because this is the case, it can be quite difficult to determine the actual impact of an employee’s social media message, therefore making it harder to determine a ruling.

In cases where the UI ruling is based on a social media post, there’s no question that the audience also plays a crucial role. If the situation involved a single verbal remark to a co-worker on social media, it may not necessarily result in a disqualification of unemployment insurance benefits. However, if the post was seen by a broader audience, including those who worked with the former employee, then that could definitely have a greater bearing on the outcome of the UI hearing.

When employers have properly written a Social Media Code of Conduct and have gained confirmation that the former employee had read and accepted it, then it becomes instrumental in the UI ruling. If there is no formal policy, employers could still win unemployment hearings if there’s a strong statement about the respectful treatment of other employees.

Social media complicates the already muddy waters of unemployment insurance benefits. It’s wise for employers to depend on a third-party agency to help guide them through the UI claims process when social media is involved.


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