E.C. v. RCM of Washington, Inc.

92 A.3d 305 (2014)

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E.C. v. RCM of Washington, Inc.

District of Columbia Court of Appeals
92 A.3d 305 (2014)

Facts

E.C. (plaintiff) sought unemployment benefits after she was terminated from RCM of Washington, Inc. (RCM) (defendant) for allowing her ex-boyfriend, M.L., onto RCM’s property in violation of RCM’s policy. The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (the department) denied E.C.’s application on the ground that she had been terminated for misconduct. E.C. appealed on the ground that she was entitled to unemployment benefits because her termination was due to domestic violence. E.C. claimed that she and M.L. were in an abusive relationship and she had allowed him onto RCM’s premises because she was concerned that he would make a scene if asked to leave. An administrative-law judge held a hearing. E.C. presented evidence that she had been in an abusive relationship with M.L. and that M.L. had frequently stalked and harassed her while she was working. E.C. also presented evidence that she had obtained protective orders against M.L., and she provided witnesses who testified about the abusive relationship. The administrative-law judge found that E.C. was a domestic-violence victim and had committed simple misconduct by allowing M.L. onto the premises. However, the judge affirmed the department’s decision on the ground that E.C. had not allowed M.L. onto the premises because of her being a domestic-violence victim. E.C. petitioned for the District of Columbia Court of Appeals to review the case. The District of Columbia Office of the Attorney General joined E.C. in the suit.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Blackburne-Rigsby, J.)

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