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Postpone a Hearing

Postpone a Hearing
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Can I Postpone a Hearing?

Can I adjourn (postpone) a hearing?

It is very important that you attend your scheduled hearing.  If you cannot attend your hearing, contact the office listed on the top of the Notice of Hearing as soon as possible to explain why you cannot attend.  Based on the reason(s) you give for not attending the hearing, the judge will decide if you can be excused from the hearing and whether or not the hearing will be adjourned (postponed). Any correspondence related to your case should include the ALJ Case Number listed on the Notice of Hearing.  Personnel at the Hearing office will tell you whether your request for a postponement is granted.

The hearing will go forward so long as the party who requested the hearing appears, even if the non-requesting party does not appear.  The ALJ will issue a decision based solely on the testimony and any documents offered by the appearing party. 

If you did not attend the hearing and the decision is not in your favor, you may apply to reopen the case.  Applications to reopen will only be granted if you show that you had a good reason for not showing up at the hearing and you apply to reopen the hearing within a reasonable time.

Request a Postponement

What are some reasons that a hearing will be postponed?

A hearing could be postponed at the request of a party before the hearing for a variety of good reasons. Examples include a party or a party’s representative, or attorney has another legal proceeding at the same time, or the claimant or the employer’s necessary witness has jury duty, or military duty of short duration (for example, a short National Guard duty).

No Answer to Request

 

What if I do not get an answer to my Adjournment (postponement) request?

Call the hearing office before the day of the hearing to follow up on your request.  If you have not received an answer by the time of your scheduled hearing, you should attend the hearing.

How Long Before a New Hearing?

How long does it take for a postponed case to be rescheduled?

Generally, an adjourned hearing can be placed back on the schedule within two to three weeks. It may take longer if the ALJ has issued a subpoena for records.

I Do Not Have an Attorney Yet

What if I need an adjournment (postponement) because I have not found an attorney or other representative?

You should let the ALJ know that you have tried to find an attorney or representative with no success. The ALJ may grant you permission to reopen the case once you have found an attorney or representative.

What If I Miss a Hearing?

What if I miss a hearing?

1) I requested the hearing

 

The party requesting the hearing must appear for the hearing to go forward.  If you requested the hearing and do not appear, a decision for non-appearance will be issued.  This means that the hearing is closed, and the Department of Labor Determination remains in effect. 

If you still wish to have a hearing after missing the hearing that was scheduled and the case was closed, you must apply to reopen the case. Fax or mail your request to re-open your case to the address or fax number on the front of the decision as soon as you are ready to appear at a new hearing.  Your request should include the case number and the reason you did not attend the hearing.  Attach any documentation that supports why you did not attend the hearing. List any dates in the next 45 days on which you are not available for a hearing.  We will do our best to schedule the next hearing on a day and time you can attend.

Applications to reopen will only be granted by the ALJ if you show that you had a good reason for your failure to appear at the earlier hearing and if you requested the reopening within a reasonable time.

What is considered a “reasonable time” will depend on the circumstances. You should take steps immediately to solve the problem that caused you to miss the hearing. For example, if you wanted to find an attorney, start looking for an attorney right away. If you needed to obtain documents (telephone records, for example), send your request to your telephone company right away. The ALJ may ask you to explain what you did to solve the problem after you missed the hearing.

 

2) The other party requested the hearing

The hearing will go forward so long as the party who requested the hearing appears, even if the non-requesting party does not appear.  The ALJ will issue a decision based solely on the testimony and any documents offered by the appearing party. 

If the decision is not in your favor and you wish to challenge it, you may apply to reopen the case.  Applications to reopen will only be granted if you show that you had a good reason for not showing up at the hearing and you apply to reopen the hearing within a reasonable time. 

What is considered a “reasonable time” will depend on the circumstances. You should take steps immediately to solve the problem that caused you to miss the hearing. For example, if you wanted to find an attorney, start looking for an attorney right away. If you needed to obtain documents (telephone records, for example), send your request to your telephone company right away. The ALJ will ask you to explain what you did to solve the problem you missed the hearing.

Before your reopened hearing, review your case file and listen to recordings of any previous hearings, at the hearing site before the hearing (for in-person hearings). All hearing offices are open from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. Bring your hearing notice to the hearing site well in advance of the hearing and request to view and/or copy the case file. If you have financial difficulty, you may fill out a waiver and request a free copy. If you are looking for legal representation, it is important to have a copy of your case file ready so that an attorney can review it.

When to Apply for a New Hearing

How many times can a party apply to reopen?

Any party that does not attend an unemployment insurance hearing after receiving notification may only request one reopening. If you fail either to appear or proceed at a second hearing, any further request for reopening must be made to the Appeal Board. The Board will grant another hearing only if it determines that your failure to appear at both prior hearings may be for good cause.

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