Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (1996).
STATE OF MINNESOTA
IN COURT OF APPEALS
Wallace W. Carlson Co.,
Commissioner of Economic Security,
File No. 10159UC96
Philip M. Jarosz, 2415 South Shore Blvd., White Bear Lake, MN 55110 (pro se relator)
Kent E. Todd, 390 North Robert Street, St. Paul, MN 55101 (for respondent Commissioner of Economic Security)
Considered and decided by Amundson, Presiding Judge, Huspeni, Judge, and Kalitowski, Judge.
Relator Philip Jarosz challenges his disqualification from reemployment insurance benefits, claiming the representative of the commissioner erred in concluding relator was terminated for misconduct. We affirm.
An individual discharged from a job for misconduct is disqualified from receiving reemployment insurance benefits. Minn. Stat. § 268.09, subd. 1(b) (1996). Misconduct
is limited to conduct evincing such wilful or wanton disregard of an employer's interests as is found in deliberate violations or disregard of standards of behavior which the employer has the right to expect of his employee, or in carelessness or negligence of such degree or recurrence as to manifest equal culpability, wrongful intent or evil design, or to show an intentional and substantial disregard of the employer's interests or of the employee's duties and obligations to his employer.
Tilseth v. Midwest Lumber Co., 295 Minn. 372, 374-75, 204 N.W.2d 644, 646 (1973) (quoting Boynton Cab Co. v. Neubeck, 237 Wis. 249, 259, 296 N.W. 636, 640 (1941)). "Even a single incident can be misconduct if it represents a sufficient enough disregard for the employer's expectations." Blau v. Masters Restaurant Assoc., 345 N.W.2d 791, 794 (Minn. App. 1984).
"Misconduct" may encompass a situation where an employee refuses to obey an employer's instructions. It is not disputed that on several occasions relator would substitute his own methods for those of his supervisors, even after he had been reproached for that conduct. The incident that precipitated relator's discharge occurred when relator refused to stock a press machine while it was running, as he had been directed. The commissioner's representative concluded that relator's failure to follow his supervisor's instructions constitutes disqualifying employment misconduct. We agree.
On appeal from decisions of the commissioner's representative, this court reviews findings in the light most favorable to the decision and will not disturb findings if evidence exists reasonably tending to sustain them. White v. Metropolitan Med. Ctr., 332 N.W.2d 25, 26 (Minn. 1983). Though the parties gave conflicting testimony about relator's conduct, this court "do[es] not have the liberty to weigh credibility." Blau, 345 N.W.2d at 793. Relator's failure to follow the instructions given by his supervisors constitutes disqualifying misconduct. Even if relator found those instructions "stupid," he was required to comply. Bibeau v. Resistance Tech., Inc., 411 N.W.2d 29, 32 (Minn. App. 1987).