Oregon, OH asked in Employment Law and Tax Law for Michigan

Q: My girlfriend's job was shut down temporarily due to coronavirus in Michigan. She got denied unemployment.

She's a part time worker and got denied unemployment benefits because her wages for her highest quarter were just over $3,200 and she needed just over $3,700 to qualify. However, that number from her employer didn't include the tips she received. In order to have reached the $3,700 number with her tips, she would have only had to have made roughly $10 in tips every time she went into work, which she said that was pretty much a minimum for what she'd earn in a day in tips, but there's no documentation of this. The main problem I see is that she didn't claim those tips on her taxes but this is her first year working and I'm assuming there's some way she might be able to claim ignorance as far as her filing of taxes goes? She has also done dog sitting, which would have put her over as well, but also didn't claim it on taxes. How should she go about this appeal? She is in desperate need of money, we don't even have money for food right now.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers
  • Grand Rapids, MI
  • Licensed in Michigan

A: I'm sorry for your situation. Your girlfriend may appeal that unemployment agency decision, but unfortunately, that may be a longshot. You are spot-on about the wage issue. And money from extra jobs won't matter. It's the money from the employer you are seeking unemployment from that matters.

Bruce Alexander Minnick agrees with this answer

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