This opinion will be unpublished and
may not be cited except as provided by
Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2004).
IN COURT OF APPEALS
Department of Employment and Economic Development,
Filed August 23, 2005
Department of Employment and Economic Development
File No. 20456 03
Kevin M. Lindsey,
Allan Shapiro, Shapiro Gordon LLC, Parkdale Plaza Suite 340, 1660 South Highway 100, Minneapolis, MN 55416 (for respondent Circus Juventas)
Linda A. Holmes, Department of Employment and Economic Development, First National Bank Building, 332 Minnesota Street, Suite E200, St. Paul, MN 55101-1351 (for respondent Department of Employment and Economic Development)
Considered and decided by Willis, Presiding Judge; Klaphake, Judge; and Shumaker, Judge.
U N P U B L I S H E D O P I N I O N
Relator brings this certiorari appeal from the determination by the senior unemployment-review judge (SURJ) that she is disqualified from receiving unemployment benefits because she quit her job without good reason caused by her employer. Because the record reasonably supports the SURJ’s determination, we affirm.
Relator Mary Zimmermann worked for respondent-employer Circus Juventas from February 17 to November 11, 2003. Circus Juventas, a nonprofit organization, employed Zimmermann full time as director of development and marketing. Her supervisors were Dan and Betty Butler, who are the founders of the organization.
In October 2003, Zimmermann examined
certain of the organization’s financial information while the
a meeting on October 28, 2003, the board determined that Zimmermann’s allegations
of financial wrongdoing by the
The morning after the board meeting, Nelson met with Zimmermann, explained the board’s action, and asked if she had any other concerns. She said that she did not.
At her office, Zimmermann phoned her husband and told him that she had been relieved of her duties. At that point, Mr. Butler told her she had not been relieved of her duties, and if she left, the decision would be hers. Zimmermann did not return to work the following day; rather, she delivered a letter to Mr. Butler stating that he had terminated her employment and that she was entitled to payment under her contract. Circus Juventas responded with a letter notifying Zimmermann that her resignation was accepted.
Zimmermann established a benefit account with the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. A department adjudicator initially determined that she was discharged by her employer. Circus Juventas appealed that decision, a de novo evidentiary hearing was held, and the unemployment law judge reversed the adjudicator’s decision. On further appeal, the senior unemployment-review judge determined that Zimmermann was not discharged, but quit without good reason caused by the employer. This certiorari appeal follows.
D E C I S I O N
The questions on appeal are whether Zimmermann was discharged or quit her employment and if she quit, whether it was with good reason caused by her employer.
an employee has been discharged or voluntarily quit is a question of fact.” Midland
Elec., Inc. v. Johnson, 372 N.W.2d 810, 812 (
Zimmermann argues that her
employment was terminated by her employer when Mr. Butler told her that if she
kept walking, he would relieve her of her duties. She claims that Brown v. Port of Sunnyside Club, Inc., 304 N.W.2d 877 (
This court both views the
facts in the light most favorable to the SURJ’s decision and defers to the SURJ’s
credibility determinations. Schmidgall, 644 N.W.2d at 804; Whitehead v. Moonlight Nursing Care, Inc.,
529 N.W.2d 350, 352 (
employee who quits is not disqualified if he or she had a good reason caused by
the employer for quitting. A good reason
is a reason “(1) that is directly related to the employment and for which the
employer is responsible; and (2) that is significant and would compel an
average, reasonable worker to quit and become unemployed rather than remaining
in the employment.” Minn. Stat. §
268.095, subd. 3(a) (Supp. 2003). Whether
an employee has good reason to quit attributable to the employer is a question
of law, which we review de novo. Peppi v. Phyllis Wheatley Cmty. Ctr.,
614 N.W.2d 750, 752 (
argues that her quit was justified because the
Zimmermann’s second justification for quitting,
that she gave Circus Juventas a reasonable opportunity to correct an adverse
working condition, also has no support in the record. Although Zimmermann does not clearly describe
the adverse working condition that she claims to have identified, it appears
that she believed that she was treated harshly and unfairly during the November
11 meeting with the
The record reasonably supports the SURJ’s finding that Zimmermann quit without good reason caused by her employer.
 The revisor’s office inadvertently substituted the term “ineligible for” for the term “disqualified from” in Minn. Stat. § 268.095, subds. 1, 4, 7, 8(a) (Supp. 2003). See Minn. Stat. § 268.095, subds. 1, 4, 7, 8(a) (2002) (using term “disqualified from”); 2003 Minn. Laws 1st Spec. Sess. ch. 3, art. 2, § 11 (making other changes to Minn. Stat. § 268.095, subd. 1, but retaining term “disqualified from”); 2003 Minn. Laws 1st Spec. Sess. ch. 3, art. 2, § 20(j), (k) (directing revisor to change the term “disqualified from” to “ineligible for” only in Minn. Stat. § 268.095, subd. 12, and then to renumber to Minn. Stat. § 268.085, subd. 13b).
 The legislature recently substituted the term “senior
unemployment review judge” for “representative of the commissioner.” See