10. Voluntary Leaving

MacKintosh v MESC – 10.72

MacKintosh v MESC
Digest no. 10.72

Section 29(1)(a)

Cite as: MacKintosh v MESC, unpublished opinion of the Wayne Circuit Court, issued September 11, 1995 (Docket No. 95-509950-AE).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Nancy MacKintosh
Employer: Forham Johnston Realty, Inc.
Docket no.: B93-13467-129308
Date of decision: September 11, 1995

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CIRCUIT COURT HOLDING: An employee’s refusal to sign a confidentiality agreement and subsequent resignation is not with good cause attributable to the employer when the employer’s request is reasonable.

FACTS: The claimant worked as the employer’s office manager, and as a result had unique access to the employer’s confidential information. The claimant’s husband worked as an independent contractor for the employer, but resigned to accept a position with a competitor. The employer requested the claimant sign a confidentiality agreement. The claimant failed to do so. After three and a half weeks passed, the employer again requested she sign the confidentiality agreement. The claimant submitted a resignation. The employer requested she reconsider, but claimant decided to leave.

DECISION: The claimant is disqualified for benefits under Section 29(1)(a).

RATIONALE: The claimant was the only employee married to an employee of a competitor. The claimant had no right to reveal the employer’s confidential information. The employer has the right to take reasonable precautions to protect its confidential information.

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated:

12. Misconduct

Standard Automotive Parts Company v Employment Security Commission – 12.71

Standard Automotive Parts Company v Employment Security Commission
Digest No. 12.71

Section 421.29

Cite as: Std Auto Parts Co v Employment Security Comm, 3 Mich App 561; 143 NW2d 135 (1966).

Court: Michigan Court of Appeals
Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Ronnie Romans
Employer: Standard Auto Parts Company
Date of decision: June 28, 1966

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COURT OF APPEALS HOLDING: A claimant who was summarily discharged because he refused to sign a “loyalty oath” until after consulting with the union about his status is not disqualified for misconduct.

FACTS: Claimant worked as a supervisor at the employer. The employer found out that Claimant would be among several employees trying to organize into a union and tried to stop him from doing so. Employer demanded that Claimant sign a document promising to remain neutral and not to engage in any union organizing activities. Claimant refused to sign and was fired.

DECISION: Claimant is not disqualified.

RATIONALE: Claimant was not fired because of the fact that he was a supervisor who was engaged in aiding and abetting union organizing activities or doing anything else inimical to his role. He was fired solely for his refusal to sign an oath of loyalty to employer. Claimant was given a peremptory order to sign a document disavowing any union organizing activity. The employer took the position such activity by Claimant would subject the employer to charges of unfair labor practices under the provisions of the Labor-Management Relations Act of 1947, as amended. Employer further took the position that as a supervisor, Claimant could be expected to sign the document and his refusal was an act of misconduct. Claimant’s status as supervisor is not the issue. The issue is the nature of what Claimant was asked to do and the circumstances under which he was asked to do it.

Digest author: Board of Review (original digest here); edited by Benjamin Tigay, Michigan Law, Class of 2018
Digest updated: January 2, 2018