An unemployment hearing is a very big deal because the outcome essentially decides your future for a while. That makes it important to walk into the situation ready to address all the issues and answer all the questions you may be asked.
In other words, you need to be prepared. This isn’t the time to simply “wing it” and hope for the best. What’s the best way to prepare for your hearing?
Put your paperwork together
You’ll have an easier time supporting your case for unemployment if you’re organized. Pull together all your old performance evaluations and the employee handbook.
These items can help you establish exactly what your job duties were and how well you did them. This is particularly important if your employer alleges that you were fired because you weren’t performing up to acceptable standards.
Write down your recollections
The circumstances of your termination are essential to your eligibility, so refresh your memory about what happened. Write down everything that happened leading up to your dismissal (or the point where you felt forced to quit). Then, read through the information a few times to make sure that you can concisely relay the full picture during the hearing.
It’s also smart to write out all the points that you want to make during your hearing. That way, you’re far less likely to skip over something important to your case.
Look for help from witnesses
If you believe that there are witnesses who can support your case, you can ask them to testify at your hearing. If they’re unwilling to do so voluntarily, an unemployment compensation attorney may be able to subpoena the witnesses on your behalf.
Pay attention to protocol
It never hurts to go into the hearing as respectfully as possible. Be on time, dress in your best business attire and stay composed even if your employer says something outrageous. Don’t interrupt anyone, because you will get your turn to be heard.