So confused!!! UI Claim to Pregnancy Disability/Overpayment False Statement Penalties/ ReOpen Claim

September 13, 2013 · 12 comments

in ¿Confused?

Ok so here is a somewhat shortened version of my VERY confusing situation with EDD…I originally applied for unemployment in July of 2012 after being let go from my position in April 2012. I have consistently been seeking gainful employment since losing this position. In September of 2012 I became pregnant which made finding employment even more difficult for me, but I still sought employment opportunities throughout the entire pregnancy. In February 2013 I attended a certification appointment at the EDD office, during this meeting I was informed by the person conducting the certification interview that I was entitled to Maternity Leave pay once I had my baby. She directed me to have the forms filled out by my doctor and send them back to the address labeled on the form (up until this point I was under the impression that I was not eligible for Maternity Leave compensation because I was no longer employed).

I filled out the Maternity Leave paperwork and left it with my doctor’s office on April 12, 2013. I did not hear back from anyone from the Disability Office until May 6, 2013 when they called me to find out my employer’s information as I had left that section blank on the form (I did this because technically I no longer had an employer and was still confused as to whether or not Maternity Leave was something I was eligible for or not) during the phone call the man I spoke with did not give me any indication as to whether or not I was eligible or not, he simply asked for my previous employer’s information and I explained I had an open unemployment claim and he said he could look up the information from there; that was the extent of the conversation.

I did not receive a correspondence from the Disability Office informing me I had even been approved until after my son was born (I delivered on May 11, 2013) so I was unaware that the Maternity Leave claim was even open until I picked up my mail from my mail box a week after being discharged from the hospital. The only reason I continued sending in my unemployment certification forms was because I had been told and had read several times on the forms that I was always required to fill out those forms and send them in when they were sent to me, otherwise my unemployment claim case would be closed. I truly did not intend to give misleading information by submitting these claim forms. When I did not hear back from the Disability Office after submitting my paperwork I assumed that I was not eligible for Maternity Leave compensation and that I should continue looking for work, faxing/sending out resumes and going on job interviews that became available to me, that is exactly what I did all the way up until the day I was admitted to the hospital to have my baby. I also had child care options set up for my son immediately following my discharge from the hospital should a job opportunity become available to me immediately.

So as of now I have a 10 week False Statement Penalty which I am appealing. I just received my appeal hearing date for Sept 26. In the meantime I have reopened my claim as of Aug 4 (once my maternity disability and PFL benefits were done) I certified for 2 weeks (Aug 4-17), submitted online but wasn’t paid, which I expected due to the penalty (they withhold payments even though you are appealing correct??) but have not received any additional claim forms. I got a letter last Tuesday stating I had a phone interview scheduled for Sept 6…they called and cleared up the “eligibility issue” which was basically: 1) Had I stopped collecting PFL benefits? YES 2) Did I have child care? YES and 3) Have I been looking for work? YES…

I have still not received my claim forms for Aug 18-31 or the one that should be submitted this Sunday for dates Sept 1-14…

Does ANYONE know what is going on or what I should expect from here on out? I am sooooooooo confused by all of this that I don’t even know if I’m asking the right questions…

  • t

    you have to wait until the 10 weeks are over before you can get paid, and they will prob, send you any claim forms you are missing all at once.

  • Mark

    Thank you for having the courage to post here.
    If you drive to an EDD office and wait in line for a direct phone, you can speak with an edd person and maybe they can help you a bit.
    I think if you have emergency issues of loss of place to live or not enough for food, the EDD maybe will help you more, but I am not sure.
    You have been blessed with a baby in this storm called life.
    God bless you, your baby, and your family.
    I will say a prayer for you.

  • anonymous

    As my boyfriend Beck Bennett always says “It’s not complicated”. Question 1 on the claim form each week asks if you were to sick or injured to work. Question 2 asks if there was any other reason other than illness or injury that you could not have worked. It’s a yes or no answer. Just like when you found out you were pregnant, you were not kinda pregnant with extenuating circumstances. You were pregnant. I’m guessing that maybe a few weeks before you had your baby up until at the minimum 6 weeks after you had him you were not able to work, am I right? Ignorance is not an excuse. When you open your claim EDD sends you a handbook with your award letter. It’s blue. It’s sent to you for a reason, there is important information in it, they expect you to read it.

    • NewMommy

      No I was actually able to work. My doctor wasn’t even going to put me on maternity leave until I asked her AFTER being told to do so at the EDD office. Her philosophy is “pregnancy is not a disability” and she said I could return to normal activities as soon as I felt up to it after delivery as long as I didn’t have any complications during childbirth (which I didn’t). I went into the hospital late Friday night, had the baby early Saturday and was released Sunday….on the claim form online it asks “Is there any reason other than illness or injury you could not have accepted work DURING THE WEEK DAYS….I happened to have my baby on a weekend! Thus the reason I didn’t think this question applied to me.

      • I do not think so

        So you had your baby on Saturday, were released from the hospital on Sunday, and were actively seeking work, and available for work on Monday. Yeah, right. Good luck with your appeal.

        • NewMommy

          Yes, actually I was looking for work. I have email correspondences from companies that I submitted applications to on Monday and Tuesday May 14th and 15th stating that they received my resume… I never certified for benefits AFTER having the baby though….what is in question is the 4 weeks prior to giving birth, at which time I was actively seeking work, and ready to go to work (though nobody is willing to hire woman who is 9 months pregnant!) I did however go on 2 interviews during those weeks but never received a call back. And I have all of that documentation.

          • anonymous

            Uhhh….no….look at your claim form again, the dates are sunday through saturday. there is a big difference between the WORD “Weekday” and the WORDS “Week Days”. If you were indeed actively seeking work and ready to go to work, why would you fill out state disability paperwork on april 16th and not tell your doctor what date you wanted him to certify you “disabled”? Also, had you read the instructions on that paperwork you would have read that in order to be eligible for disability benefits, you have to mail your application 9 days AFTER the day that you became disabled. once you submit that application you are saying that on that day you were no longer eligible to work. but on the ui side, you were saying that you were eligible to work. so make up your mind because how i see it, either way you were overpaid by one of them, either sdi or ui because you can’t get both at the same time.

          • NewMommy

            No I understand that and I agree I was overpayed…I’ve already sent the payment back to them….actually I never touched it out of BoA until they sent me the overpayment form…this was after I noified THEM of the overpayment. I have no problem paying the money back, I just don’t think I should have to serve a 10 week penalty because I was confused by their forms and it took over a month to process the paperwork.

          • anonymous

            that is a different matter entirely. if you are just appealing the penalty weeks, you will probably get the time penalty reduced, but they won’t get rid of it entirely.

          • NewMommy

            Ok. Thanks for your input. Yes I am only appealing the time penalty, not the overpayment. I have already served 2 weeks of it….should be 6 weeks as of this Sunday but I still haven’t received my claim forms for the past 4 weeks! That is what I’m so concerned with! I have managed to budget pretty well in anticipation of the 10 weeks but if I don’t get my claim forms I can’t certify and I can’t serve the penalty! So if I don’t get to certify for these past 4 weeks then I’m really going to be screwed in terms of payment arrangements with bill companies and such…

      • ConfusedinCA

        No, the form does not specify weekdays, it specifies in question 1. Were you too sick or injured to work and asks you to specify from 1-7 days, which included weekends. Question 2 asks “was there any reason other than sickness or injury that you could not have accepted full-time work each workday?” (not weekday).

        • Darlene Connor

          OMG shut up….. LOL. You act like you’re going to pay her out of your own pocket.. She was simply seeking answers. .. not A-hole responses. Rude person… with a husband named… what was it.. Benjamin Button? ? Lol

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