Recent Cases

Whether DUI/OVI cases, unemployment appeals, or criminal cases, Smith's Law Offices' record shows a steady flow of successes for our clients.

Please keep in mind that the success of any legal matter depends on the unique circumstances of each case and we cannot guarantee particular results for future clients based on successes we have achieved in past legal matters.

Commercial Drivers License Saved after OVI Charge:

Our client carried a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) for work. CDL's are disqualified for one-year after a first-time OVI and for life after a second-time OVI. When our client was charged with an OVI, we worked diligently with the prosecutor and court to obtain a dismissal of the OVI charges as well as getting his administrative license suspension vacated to save his job and CDL.

  
Ottawa County Municipal Court
November 29, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI after a traffic stop and refusing to take a breath test. By proceeding with great care, we were able to reach a dismissal of the OVI charge, saving our client from a year-long license suspension and high points to her license

  
Strongsville Mayor's Court
November 23, 2021
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No Just Cause to Terminate Employee for Customer Complaints:

ODJFS denied unemployment compensation to our client, claiming the employer terminated him without just cause due to customer complaints. Through a hearing, we showed that the employer did not follow progressive discipline. Further, complaints are part of the customer service industry and not sufficient proof of misconduct by the employee. The Hearing Officer agreed, reversing the denial of benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 19, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

Although our client was stopped for speeding and ultimately provided an over-the-limit breath test, we worked his case to the fullest extent possible to obtain an agreement to dismiss the charges with a plea to a non-moving citation instead. As a result, he was saved from points to his license and a year-long license suspension.

  
Sandusky County Court - Clyde
November 18, 2021
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School Employee Approved for Unemployment:

School employees typically do not receive unemployment compensation through summer breaks if they have a contract or reasonable assurance of employment at the beginning of the next academic year. Our client was denied benefits through the summer for this reason; however, we showed that he was a 12-month employee and should receive benefits through the summer because he suffered an unanticipated loss of income. The Hearing Officer agreed, approving his benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 18, 2021
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Unemployment Won - No Just Cause to Terminate for Text Messages:

Our client sent a text message to her supervisor that was arguably unprofessional. However, it was an isolated incident and a minor one. Therefore, the Hearing Officer agreed that the employer lacked just cause to terminate. As a result, the unemployment hearing was won and our client was approved for unemployment compensation.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 17, 2021
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PUA Benefits Won:

Our client was initially approved for unemployment compensation; however, the PUA later denied her benefits requiring repayment of a large overpayment. PUA claimed our client was not unemployed due to COVID. Through a hearing we showed that our client's cleaning business came to a halt upon COVID because clients were not willing to let her into their homes. As a result, we won the hearing and the overpayment was eliminated.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 17, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won - No Just Cause to Terminate:

Our client was terminated for sending a message to a co-worker that complained about newly hired employees. Even though the newly hired employees did not see the message or complain about it, and the message simply stated, "These guys are weird," the employer terminated our client. While ODJFS denied her benefits for being terminated with just cause, through a hearing we prevailed by showing this type of discipline was disciplinary overkill. As a result, the Hearing Officer concluded the termination was without just cause and approved benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 10, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won - Not Sufficiently At Fault for Termination:

Our client was terminated after seven years of employment due to an allegation that she did not properly handle calls. Through a telephone hearing, we demonstrated that the employer could not show her actions represented sufficient fault or misconduct to deny her unemployment compensation benefits. As a result, her benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 10, 2021
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Unemployment Won - Client Did Not Refuse Work:

ODJFS denied our client's benefits, erroneously believing the employer's claim that she turned down an offer to return to work. Through a hearing, we showed that the employer lacked any evidence of any communication about an offer to return to work. As a result, the Hearing Officer removed a large overpayment ODJFS claimed our client owed.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 9, 2021
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Severance Not Deductible from Unemployment Benefits:

When a person receives a severance payment, even as a lump sum, OJDFS will allocate that payment out over a number of weeks as deductible income reducing a person's benefits unless the employer allocates a lump sum severance to one particular week. ODJFS allocated out our client's severance payment, but by working with our client and the employer, we were able to obtain documentation to prevent the allocation. A hearing officer agreed, approving our client's benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 8, 2021
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Unemployment Approved - Disability Payments:

To qualify for unemployment compensation, a person must have sufficient qualifying weeks of employment and income during their base period. Our client was denied benefits in part because ODJFS did not count disability payments she received from her employer as income. Through a hearing, we showed that such disability benefits do count as income, and as a result her unemployment benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
November 4, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed and Driver's License Suspension Avoided:

Our client was charged with an OVI after submitting to both breath and urine tests. Through researching the discovery material from the State, proactive steps and negotiations with the prosecutor, and agreement was reached to dismiss the OVI charges saving our client from the strict OVI penalties and avoiding any license suspension

  
Olmsted Falls Mayor's Court
November 2, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won for "Independent Contractor"

Our client quit his job, but upon further discussions with his employer returned to work completing the same job but listed as an independent contractor rather than an employee. When he was laid off from that job, he was disqualified for having originally quit the job. We showed the hearing officer that the work he did as an "independent contractor" should have been classified as employment, and therefore it was sufficient to requalify him for benefits. The Hearing Officer agreed, eliminated a large overpayment and approved him for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 28, 2021
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Marijuana OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI, for testing over the limit for THC metabolites, possession of marijuana, paraphernalia and speeding in a school zone. Through researching her case and analyzing the reports, video and testing results, we raised several legal arguments for her that lead to a dismissal of all of these charges, with her instead pleading to a non-moving violation. Her license suspension was also vacated.

  
Sandusky County Court - Woodville
October 27, 2021
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Unemployment Approved After Termination Without Just Cause:

Our client was terminated after an allegation that she did not properly assist with other hospital employees that were placing a patient in restraints. Through the hearing, we showed that the employer lacked reliable or credible evidence to support the allegations. As a result, her benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 27, 2021
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Employee Terminated After PIP Approved for Unemployment:

The employer placed our client on a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) after alleged performance issues and then it subsequently terminated her. We showed the hearing officer that the employer lacked evidence of further performance issues after the PIP, and as a result she was approved for unemployment benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 27, 2021
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Unemployment Approved - Employee Did Not Turn Down Work:

ODJFS denied benefits to our client after the employer alleged that she turned down additional work hours. Through the hearing, we showed that our client did not receive the offer, which was allegedly sent by email, and as a result her denial was reversed and she was approved for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 27, 2021
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Unemployment Approved After Resignation for Medical Issues:

Our client suffered from certain medical conditions that impaired his ability to perform his work. After a leave of absence, he resigned because there were no other positions available which conformed to his physical capabilities and no other positions were offered to him. He was able to perform less physical work, but ODJFS denied his claim explaining they believed he did not have just cause to resign. Through a hearing, we showed that he did have just cause to resign as a result of a bona fide medical condition, and as a result he was approved for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 26, 2021
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Unemployment Approved After Altercation:

Our client was involved in an altercation at work after which he was terminated and the other employee kept their job. Through a hearing, we showed that our client was not the aggressor in the altercation and, as a result, the hearing officer approved his benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 25, 2021
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Unemployment Approved - Late Filed Claims:

Our client did not file her weekly claims for several weeks, and then she contacted ODJFS and re-opened her claim, having it backdated to the date she stopped filing claims. ODJFS accepted her weekly claims but denied her for not maintaining her registration. The Hearing Officer disagreed, concluding that we were correct - with the re-opened claim approved retroactively, she did meet the registration requirements. As a result, an overpayment was eliminated and an backpayment approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 25, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won - Good Cause to Turn Down Work:

Our client was laid off and then offered an entirely different position to return to without sufficient time to consider the offer or discussion regarding what training she would receive for the new position. She turned down the offer and as a result ODJFS denied her benefits claiming show owed a large overpayment. Through a hearing, we showed the hearing officer that the offer was not a suitable one. As a result, the ovepayment was eliminated and she was eligible instead for a large backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 21, 2021
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PUA Claim Won:

The Ohio PUA system denied our client benefits because it claimed it did not provide sufficient employment and income verification. Through pursuing appeals, submitting documentation and representation through a hearing we prevailed. His overpayment was eliminated and he was approved for a backpayment instead.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 21, 2021
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Unemployment Approved Despite Profanity:

Our client was pulled aside by a supervisor who proceeded to use profanity. Our client responded with some of her own profanity, and as a result she was terminated. A hearing officer agreed that, to terminate an employee with just cause for profanity, they should consider the severity of the profanity used; the provocation for the profanity; whether the profanity was isolated or part of a pattern; and whether other employees or customers were present. We showed that, in this case, while the profanity might have been severe, there was provocation, it was an isolated incident, and no other employees or customers were present. As a result, unemployment benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 15, 2021
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Refusal to Return to Work - Unemployment Benefits Approved:

Our client was laid off from a job that claimed, nearly 1 1/2 years later, that she refused an offer to return to work. We appealed, showing that (a) she never received an offer to return to work; and (b) she had a COVID related reason for refusing any offer if it had been made. ODJFS agreed, approving her for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
October 8, 2021
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Refusal OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI after a traffic stop, standardized field sobriety tests, and refusing a breath test. Through extensive negotiations, we prevailed in obtaining a dismissal of the OVI charge with our client accepting a plea to a lesser citation and without the harsh penalties and effects of an OVI conviction.

  
Elyria Municipal Court
October 7, 2021
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Refusal OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI, and refused a breath test, after the police got involved because his vehicle was stuck off the side of the road. Through extensive negotiations and planning, an agreement was reached to dismiss the OVI charges with our client pleading to a non-moving citation instead.

  
Vermilion Municipal Court
October 5, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won:

Our client applied for and was approved for unemployment compensation. Nearly a year later, ODJFS issued determinations denying his benefits and claiming all that he was received was owed back as an overpayment. Through the hearing, we showed that the original determination became final and ODJFS did not have jurisdiction to reverse it a year later. The Hearing Officer agreed and our client prevailed.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
September 28, 2021
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Good Cause to Resign Due to Being at High Risk for COVID:

Our client had medical conditions that placed him at high risk for COVID complications. He attempted to continue working, either by teleworking or under conditions with sufficient social distancing, but the employer was unable to provide this accommodations. As a result, our client resigned. Although he was at first denied unemployment, we worked with him to obtain medical documentation confirming his conditions and represented him through a hearing where we prevailed, showing the the hearing officer that he had good cause to resign. As a result, his benefits were approved and an large overpayment eliminated.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
September 24, 2021
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Unemployment Hearing Won:

Our client was denied unemployment because ODJFS determined that he was not available for work. Through a hearing, we showed the Hearing Officer that, while our client preferred first-shift work, he was available for other work if offered to him. As a result, we prevailed at his hearing, eliminating a large overpayment, and securing a backpayment for him.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
September 23, 2021
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Unemployment Approved For Employee Terminated for Absence:

Our client experienced a medical condition that caused him to be absent. The employer terminated him; however, he had medical documentation verifying the reason for his absence. The Hearing Officer agreed with us, that his absence was due to a bona fide medical reason and that he was not at fault for the absence or the termination. As a result, his benefits were approved with a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
September 17, 2021
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Over-the-Limit OVI Charges Dismissed:

A police officer initiated a traffic stop after allegedly receiving a telephone call reporting an impaired driver. The traffic stop resulted an OVI charges that would have brought a mandatory one-year license suspension and the potential for jail time. However, we obtained a dismissal of the charges with our client pleading to another traffic offense. This avoided an OVI on his record and year-long license suspension.

  
North Ridgeville Mayor's Court
September 15, 2021
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Unemployment Approved After Resignation:

Our client experienced a medical issue that prevented him from continuing to work at his employer. Prior to resigning, he notified the employer of the concern and gave the employer an adequate opportunity to resolve the issue. After it was not resolved, he resigned. He also obtained medical documentation to show that, while he was unable to work that job, he was able to work other jobs. Despite taking all of the right steps, he was denied unemployment benefits until we represented him through a hearing and prevailed - obtaining a win with backpayments for him.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
September 8, 2021
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Physical Therapist Approved for Unemployment:

Our client worked as a physical therapist. His employer terminated his employment claiming in part that some of his patients did to progress as much as expected. Through a telephone hearing, we demonstrated that the employer lacked any reliable evidence to support their allegations. As a result, the hearing officer agreed that the termination was without just cause. As a result, he was approved for his benefits with a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
September 2, 2021
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OVI with .232 BAC Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI after a traffic stop and providing a breath test result that the police alleged to be .232, well over the legal limit. However, after extensive negotiations an agreement was reached to dismiss the OVI, with our client agreeing to a non-moving citation instead, preventing a year-long license suspension and points to his driving record.

  
Cleveland Municipal Court
August 31, 2021
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PRN Employee Wins Unemployment Appeal:

Our client was moved to a PRN position by her employer and then the employer stopped calling her in for work. She applied for unemployment but months later received a denial of benefits and notice of overpayment. We represented her through her hearing and showed the hearing officer that she was unemployed through no fault of her own. As a result, she won her hearing and the entire overpayment was eliminated.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
August 26, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI after failing field sobriety tests and refusing a breath test. However, through researching the reports and body cam, and through negotiations with the prosecutor, we achieved an agreement to dismiss the OVI in exchange for a plea to a non-moving violation with no license suspension, no points to her license, no jail, and no drivers intervention program.

  
Parma Municipal Court
August 23, 2021
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Truck Driver Approved for Unemployment:

Our client was hired for a job but never put into work. He was denied unemployment as being terminated without just cause. Through a hearing, he prevailed and the denial of his benefits was approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
August 20, 2021
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Teacher Approved for Unemployment Benefits:

School employees typically do not receive unemployment compensation through the summers if they typically do not work through the summers and have a reasonable assurance of employment in the fall. Our client was denied benefits through the summer because it was concluded that she had such a reasonable assurance. We prevailed at her hearing, showing the hearing officer that she did not receive that assurance.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
August 19, 2021
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Temp. Employee Approved for Unemployment:

Our client worked through a temp agency that placed her with an employer. That employment opportunity came to an end, but she was denied unemployment compensation as a result of that employment ending. We showed the hearing officer that the real employer was the temporary agency, with whom she maintained employment though they did not have a place to send her to work. As a result, she was unemployed due to a lack of work and eligible for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
August 16, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed - Saving Military Career:

By raising issues with respect to a traffic stop, we were able to reach an agreement that avoided an OVI charge or any alcohol related charge, which would have caused our client a great deal of concern with his military career and security clearances.

  
Erie County Municipal Court
August 4, 2021
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Unemployment Benefits Won - Unjust Termination:

Our client was terminated from their job after several medically related absences. We showed the hearing officer that the absences were due to bona fide medical issues and through no fault of our client. As a result, she won her unemployment hearing and benefits were approved with a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
August 4, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

After raising several evidentiary issues, we were able to persuade the prosecutor and judge to agree to a dismissal of the charges with our client pleading to merely a minor misdemeanor with a maximum fine of $150.00, no license suspension, no jail, no probation, and no driver's intervention program.

  
Sandusky County Court - Clyde
August 3, 2021
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Unemployment Benefits Approved After Termination Without Just Cause:

We represented a woman who was terminated after the employer allegedly received customer complaints about her service. We showed unemployment, however, that the termination was without just cause because she had no prior discipline and the employer lacked evidence to substantiate the complaints. As a result, she was approved for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
August 3, 2021
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Unemployment Approved for Terminated Employee:

Our client had a clean work record when the employer told him they were ending his employment because things, "were not working out." When he applied for unemployment, they denied his benefits claiming he quit without just cause. Through a hearing, we showed that he was terminated and the termination was without just cause. As a result, his unemployment compensation was approved with a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
July 30, 2021
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Unemployment Benefits Approved:

Our client had discussions with two employers while receiving unemployment compensation. ODJFS determined that he was denied benefits for turning down offers of suitable employment. We showed the hearing officer that the first job offer was for a job out of his field and at $10 less per hour than he had previously been receiving, and therefore was not an offer of suitable employment. We also showed the Hearing Officer that the discussions with the second job never led to an actual offer of employment. Therefore, his benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
July 23, 2021
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Out of State Income Counts for Unemployment:

Our client was denied unemployment benefits in Ohio essentially because most of her income was from another state. We showed unemployment the amount of the income and verified her eligibility with the hearing officer. As a result, her benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
July 22, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won:

Our client was denied unemployment compensation due to an allegation that she turned down an offer of suitable work. However, during the Hearing we showed that she never received an offer. She had some discussions with an potential employer about a potential position, but they never actually extended an offer. As a result, our client was approved for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
July 21, 2021
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No Just Cause to Terminate - Unemployment Benefits Approved:

Our client was terminated due to a general dissatisfaction with her work, according to the employer. However, through a hearing we showed that the large majority of the employer's concerns were due to reasons outside of the claimant's control. As a result, we won the hearing and benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
July 16, 2021
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Third in 10 OVI Dismissed:

Our client was charged with a third-in-ten OVI, which carries with it for a refusal case 60 days of jail, forfeiture of the vehicle, mandatory license suspension and high fines. However, by raising evidentiary issues regarding proof of his operating a vehicle and taking other proactive steps, an agreement was reached to dismiss the OVI charges with our client pleading to a non-moving citation instead.

  
Elyria Municipal Court
July 12, 2021
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Hit and Skip Penalties Avoided:

Our client was charged with a violation of Revised Code 4549.02, a hit and skip statute, after an accident involving a fire hydrant and bushes. That statute, however, applies only to accidents on the road. Because it carries with it 4 points, a mandatory license suspension and the possibility of up to 6 months in jail, he chose to hire use to help protect himself. We addressed the issue that he was charged under the wrong statute through extensive negotiations and legal briefs. On the day of trial, we prevailed with our arguments and our client escaped this ordeal with a fine of $350, but no license suspension, no jail time and no probation.

  
Avon Lake Municipal Court
July 8, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

Through extensive negotiations, we were able to obtain a dismissal of OVI charges against our client.

  
Huron Municipal Court.
June 29, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

Despite having an over-the-limit test, we succeeded it getting OVI charges against our client dismissed on the first court date.

  
Painesville Municipal Court
June 22, 2021
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Over-the-Limit OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was cited for an OVI when he tested over the legal limit during a traffic stop. Through extensive preparation and negotiations, we reached an agreement with the prosecutor to dismiss the OVI charges with a plea to a non-moving citation instead, which saved our client for a year-long license suspension, points to his license and the implications of an OVI conviction on future job opportunities.

  
Lorain Municipal Court
June 16, 2021
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Unemployment - No Just Cause to Terminate Employee for Bona Fide Medical Issue:

Our client was absent from work due to a bona fide medical issue. The employer terminated her and unemployment denied her benefits, concluding that the employer had just cause to terminate based on the absences. We argued that fault is an essential element to prove just cause for a termination and an employee is not at fault when they have to be absent for a bona fide medical reason. The Hearing Officer agreed, approving our client for benefits, eliminating a large overpayment, and approving a backpayment of benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
June 15, 2021
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Unemployment Won - Client Able to Work:

To qualify for unemployment benefits, a person must be able to work during their weekly claims. Our client needed to resign from his job because he was not able to work that job, but he was able to work other less demanding jobs. Unemployment denied his benefits; however. Through a hearing, we showed that he was able to work and eligible, and the Hearing Officer agreed.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
June 2, 2021
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Labor Arbitration Won:

A bus driver at a local union we represent was placed on a suspension, and what is essentially a last chance agreement, when a pedestrian initiated a physical altercation with him. After being attacked, the driver let loose his frustration verbally - explaining how upset he was. We represented the union through an arbitration and persuaded the hearing officer that, while some of what the driver said was not appropriate, the discipline was overkill. The arbitrator agreed and sustained the grievance.

  
Labor Arbitration Won
May 28, 2021
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Two Cases - Unemployment Benefits Approved After Refusal to Work:

Our clients turned down an offer to return to work due to having high risk conditions for COVID, including being over age 65. Governor Dewine issued an executive order protecting people such as my clients, but that did not stop ODJFS from issuing a denial and demanding a large overpayment. We prevailed, however, showing that they were eligible for benefits. As a result the overpayments were eliminated and they were both issued a large backpayment instead.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 28, 2021
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Unemployment Benefits Approved After Argument:

Our client raised concerns about his hours with his boss, only to have his boss tell him to go home. When our client returned to work, he was told that they believed he resigned. He explained that he did not resign and never told anyone he resigned, but the employer would not let him work. The Hearing Officer agreed with us that this was a termination without just cause and approved his unemployment benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 26, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI after being involved in an auto accident on slushy roads and testing over the legal limit. We raised arguments, pointing out that many clues of impairment were missing. As a result, an agreement was reached to dismiss the OVI charges.

  
Elyria Municipal Court.
May 26, 2021
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OVI Charges Dismissed:

After extensive preparation and negotiations in this case, on the morning of the trial, an agreement was reached from the State to dismiss the OVI charges against our client with him agreeing to plead to a non-moving citation instead.

  
Cleveland Municipal Court
May 24, 2021
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Unemployment Won For Claimant Who Resigned:

Our client was was targeted with false allegations and discipline. After continued failed attempts to resolve the issues with his employer, and with concerns about the impact of discipline on a certification he was required to carry, he resigned. Through a telephone hearing, we showed the hearing officer that he had just cause to do so and as a result his unemployment benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 24, 2021
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OVI DUS Dismissed:

Our client was charged as the result of driving under an administrative license from an OVI charge. Such a driving under an OVI suspension carries with it mandatory jail time, an additional license suspension and high fines. We showed the court that there were problems with the citation that was issued and argued that he should not have been placed under the license suspension to begin with. As a result, the prosecutor offered to dismiss the OVI charge and have our client agree to a minor misdemeanor charge with only at $100.00 fine. Our client and agreed and the case was resolved in his favor.

  
Ottawa County Municipal Court
May 21, 2021
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Unemployment Benefits Won - Client Available for Work:

To qualify for unemployment benefits, a claimant must be able and available for work. Our client was denied because ODJFS concluded he did not make himself available for work. By representing him through a telephone hearing, we showed that he was available and eligible for benefits. The Hearing Officer agreed and awarded him benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 18, 2021
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OVI With Breath Test Dismissed:

Despite the fact that the police obtained a breath test showing our client over the legal limit, though negotiations an agreement was reached to dismiss the OVI charges with our client pleading instead to a non-moving citation.

  
Vermilion Municipal Court
May 18, 2021
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Unemployment Benefits Approved After Quarantine:

Out client was subject to a two-week quarantine. ODJFS determined that she was not only unable to work during those two weeks, and therefore ineligible for unemployment compensation, but also for all weeks thereafter. Through a telephone hearing we persuaded the hearing officer that our client was able to work after the quarantine and eligible for benefits. The hearing officer agreed and awarded benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 18, 2021
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PUA Overpayment Appeal Won:

Our client was initially approved for PUA benefits with a weekly benefit amount of $440 per week. Many months later he received a determination notice stating that he owed a large overpayment because they recalculated his weekly benefit amount to be only $189 per week. Through appeals and a telephone hearing we prevailed, showing that the "corrected determination" did not include all of his income when calculating his weekly benefit amount. As a result, a large overpayment was avoided.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 18, 2021
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Unemployment Benefits Approved:

Our client was denied unemployment benefits after suffering an injury because ODJFS claimed he was not able to work and therefore not eligible. We showed the hearing officer that the injury was only temporary and that he was able to work during his claims. As a result, his unemployment benefits were approved with a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 17, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won:

To qualify for unemployment, a person must be able and available to work. Our client experienced a medical issue while collecting unemployment that required a brief stay at a hospital. ODJFS not only denied her for the week she was in the hospital, but for all weeks after. Through a hearing, we showed that she was only unable to work one week and was entitled to benefits for all weeks after. As a result, an overpayment was removed and a backpayment was issued.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 12, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won:

Our client applied for unemployment when she was separated from her employment. Two weeks after, she received a final paycheck from the employer. Nine (9) months later, ODJFS issued a determination denying benefits because she, "was not unemployed at the time of filing . . ." Through a telephone hearing, we showed that she was unemployed despite the final paycheck. While the paycheck was deductible income for the weeks in which she received it, she was entitled to benefits for all weeks thereafter. As a result, she was approved for unemployment compensation, the overpayment was eliminated, and she was eligible for a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 12, 2021
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PUA Benefits Won:

ODJFS claimed that our clielnt was not eligible for PUA benefits and demanded he repay nearing $10,000.00 in benefits. We representd him through a telephone hearing and demonstrated that he was eligible for benefits. As a result, the overpayment was eliminated and he was approved for a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 11, 2021
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Labor Arbitration Won:

At a union we represent, one of the classifications primarily worked third shift. Only one or two of the positions worked a day shift, and as a result the employees had to work for many years to gain enough seniority to work days. The employer, however, chose to replace a full-time day position with a part-timer, moving an employee with more than 20 years of seniority back to days. We proceeded to arbitration with the employer arguing they had a right to do so because the contract provided them the, "right to direct the workforce." We showed the arbitrator that this right was limited by other provisions of the CBA, including limitations on replacing full-timers with part-timers. As a result, the arbitrator sustained the grievance and ordered the employer to undue the change - allowing the full-timer to return to his day position.

  
Labor Arbitration Won
May 7, 2021
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COVID Quarantine Does Not Disqualify Unemployment Benefits:

To qualify for unemployment, a person must be able and available to work. Our client had to quarantine due to COVID while receiving unemployment and ODJFS not only denied benefits for the weeks of the quarantine, but also for all weeks after. During a hearing, we showed that he was able to work after the quarantine and the hearing officer agreed - eliminating the overpayment and approving him for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 6, 2021
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Pregnancy Does Not Preclude Unemployment Benefits:

To qualify for unemployment benefits, a person must be able and available for work. Our client was pregnant during her unemployment claims and gave birth. ODJFS denied her benefits, claiming she was unable to work during the pregnancy after after giving birth. We showed a hearing officer, however, that while there was a very limited time at the time of the birth that she could not work, she was able to work during the pregnancy and shortly after the birth. As a result, the denial of benefits was removed.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 5, 2021
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Second in 10 OVI, Two Attempted Drug Possession Charges, and Drug Paraphernalia Charge Dismissed:

Our client was charged with a second-in-ten OVI as well as two first-degree misdemeanor drug possession charges and a drug paraphernalia charge after a police officer initiated a traffic stop due to an alleged marked lanes violation. After receiving discovery, reviewing video of the traffic stop and completing suppression motions, an agreement was reached to dismiss all of these charges in exchange for a plea to a fourth-degree misdemeanor reckless op charge. Our client was pleased to accept this offer to ensure they were protected from mandatory jail time, a mandatory license suspension, high fines and the potential of six months in jail.

  
Rocky River Municipal Court
May 4, 2021
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Unemployment Approved After Resignation for Cut in Pay:

Our client worked primarily on commission. His employer removed is biggest client, which was predicted to cause a loss of 50 to 70% of his pay. He resigned, but was initially denied unemployment. We fought for his benefits and won. Even though the employer argued the they removed his client as a form of discipline, the Hearing Officer agreed with us that the employer lacked just cause to do so because it had provided no prior discipline or warnings about work performance. As a result, benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 4, 2021
.

School Employee Approve for Unemployment:

Employees of schools who typically have the summers off do not received unemployment compensation through the summers based on their school employment if they have a reasonable assurance of employment in fall. They may qualify through the summers based on other employment, if the employer does not follow required steps to give a reasonable assurance, or if their will be significant changes to the type of work or rate of pay. In this case, the employer did not follow the required steps to provide a reasonable assurance and, as a result, our client was approved for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 4, 2021
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Unemployment Approved - Client Available for Work:

To receive unemployment benefits, claimants must be able and available for work each week that they file claims. ODJFS determined that our client was unavailable for for work and retroactively denied him, stopping his benefits and claiming he owed a large overpayment. We prevailed at the hearing; however, showing the hearing officer that our client was available for work at all relevant times. As a result, he did not owe an overpayment, but rather ODJFS owed him a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
May 4, 2021
.

Unemployment Benefits Approved:

To qualify for unemployment benefits, a claimant must be available and able to work each week. Our client's claims were rejected because ODJFS determined that he was unable to work. By working with our client to obtain medical documentation and prepare for a hearing, we persuaded a Hearing Officer that he was able to work. As a result, his benefits were approved with a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
April 29, 2021
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First-Degree Misdemeanor Hit/Skip Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with a hit and skip after he was involved in a single-vehicle accident. In addition to high fines and jail time, the charges brought with them the possibility of a license suspension. Through negotiations with the prosecutor; however, we were able to show that our client was not guilty of the charge. As a result, the charge was dismissed.

  
Oberlin Municipal Court
April 22, 2021
.

Unemployment Hearing Won:

Our client was receiving unemployment when he had a medical procedure completed. One of the requirements for receiving unemployment is that a person must be able to work. ODJFS denied our client benefits for all claims after the medical procedure; however, we prevailed at a telephone hearing by showing that our client was only able to work for the one week that they had the procedure. As a result, all benefits after that one week were approved with a backpayment for our client.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
April 16, 2021
.

Telephone Communications Charge Dismissed:

Our client was charged with telephone communications harassments. The contact was friendly, was not repetitive, and was non-harassing, we argued to the prosecutor. They agreed to dismiss the charges.

  
Ottawa County Municipal Court
April 14, 2021
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Unemployment Appeal Won:

While receiving unemployment, our client became unavailable to work one week due to the need to care for a child. ODJFS denied her for not only that one week, but for all following weeks. Through a telephone hearing, we persuaded the Hearing Officer that that our client was eligible for benefits for all other weeks and as result her overpayment was eliminated and her benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
April 8, 2021
.

Employee Unable to Work Due to COVID Testing Approved for Unemployment:

Our client tested positive for COVID and was required to quarantine until she tested negative. In the meantime, the employer terminated her employment. Her claim for unemployment was initially denied, with ODJFS concluding she quit her employment without just cause. However, through a hearing we were able to persuade the Hearing Officer that this was a termination without just cause. As a result, our client was approved for benefits with a backpayment.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
April 5, 2021
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Unemployment Approved After Employee Worked a Temporary Job:

Our client was receiving unemployment benefits when he obtained a temporary one day job. However, instead of reopening his claim the following week when he did not have any more income, he simply filed another weeks claim as most people seem to do. He was denied for not reopening his claim and provided a sufficient reason for not having any more income. Through the appeal process, we showed that this was a temporary job and as a result he was approved for unemployment with his overpayment eliminated.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 31, 2021
.

Laid Off Employee Approved for Unemployment:

Our client was laid off from work, called back for a week, and then laid off again. The employer attempted to get her unemployment benefits denied by claiming she was on a voluntary leave. Through a telephone hearing, we conveyed that the employer was dishonest and as a result unemployment benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 30, 2021
.

OVI, Child Endangerment and Driving Under an OVI Suspension Dismissed:

Our client received multiple charges including an OVI, child endangerment and driving under an OVI suspension. After raising issues about the State's failure to preserve all video and evidentiary issues - including about who was operating the vehicle - an agreement was reached dismissing the charges. By pleading to a simple traffic offence, our client was saved from any jail time, from having to complete a drivers intervention program, from high points to his license, a damaging criminal record, and high fines.

  
Ottawa County Municipal Court
March 24, 2021
.

Unemployment Benefits Approved After Termination:

Our client was placed on an performance improvement plan at work and then terminated. Through a hearing, we showed that performance issues improved after the PIP and that the employer lacked just cause to terminate. The Hearing Officer agreed, approving our client for benefits with a back-payement.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 24, 2021
.

Unemployment Appeal Won After Temporary Job:

Our client was laid off from work and applied for benefits. His employer later offered him a temporary assignment for one week, and then the layoff resumed the following week. Because our client did not restart/reopen his claim for the week with no earnings, unemployment denied him claiming he did not show a valid reason for not having work. After working to obtain documentation and submit an appeal, the appeal was granted and he was approved for benefits.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 23, 2021
.

Employee Terminated After Resignation Approved For Unemployment:

Our client resigned from employment, providing a standard two-week notice. The employer terminated him before the end of the two weeks due to the resignation. Although he was initially denied for unemployment for lacking just cause to resign, we prevailed at a hearing by showing that it was a termination rather than a resignation. The Hearing Officer agreed with us that the law is, if an employee is discharged during a notice of resignation period, and the employer does not pay normal wages to the employee for the balance of that period, then the question will be whether there was just cause in connection with work to support the discharge. Here there was no just cause to terminate, and as a result unemployment benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 17, 2021
.

Assault Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with a fourth-degree misdemeanor assault after an altercation at a store. Though the incident was captured on video and defenses were tenuous at best, extensive negotiations were held that led to a dismissal of the assault charges with our client entering a plea to a much lower disorderly conduct charge. This saved our client from up to six-months in jail, up to a $1,000.00 fine, the impact to his criminal record and potential loss of his job.

  
Euclid Municipal Court
March 17, 2021
.

OVI Charges Dismissed:

Our client was charged with an OVI after the police observed him get into a vehicle, start it and turn on the lights. We prevailed in showing that an OVI conviction requires actual movement of the vehicle, which did not happen in this case. As a result, the OVI charges were dismissed with our client entering a plea to a non-moving citation instead.

  
Fremont Municipal Court
March 16, 2021
.

Second Time High Test OVI Dismissed:

Our client was charged with a second-time OVI and a high tier test reading. Through extensive negotiations, we were able to achieve a dismissal of the OVI with our client pleading to a reduced charge of reckless op. This saved our client from high points to her license and harsh OVI mandatory minimums.

  
Painesville Municipal Court
March 16, 2021
.

Etsy Seller Approved Unemployment:

Our client was approved unemployment compensation, but denied after she sold a few items on Etsy. We showed unemployment that our client, regardless of a few sales on Etsy, remained eligible for unemployment compensation. As a result, an overpayment of $30,000.00 that unemployment was seeking was eliminated, with our client approved for future benefits as well.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 15, 2021
.

OVI Charges Dismissed Due to Medical Issues:

Our client was charged with an OVI. Despite showing some signs of impairment and damage to his vehicle, he submitted to a breath test that showed no alcohol. A search of his vehicle was done that showed no drugs. We presented evidence that he may have been experiencing a medical issue, and as a result the OVI charges were dismissed with him pleading to just a non-moving citation.

  
Rocky River Municipal Court.
March 11, 2021
.

Client with Lifting Restrictions Awarded Unemployment:

Our client had lifting restrictions that prevented her from working her current job, though she could have worked other jobs. While she was initially denied unemployment, we showed the Hearing Officer that her inability to work was through no fault of her own and she remained otherwise available to work. The Hearing Officer agreed, holding, "The leave of absence, therefore, was involuntary and claimant was involuntarily unemployed." As a result, her unemployment benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 4, 2021
.

Unemployment Won - Week of Earnings Follow by a Week With No Earnings:

When a person is receiving unemployment benefits, they may still have some work and some income. However, when they have a week of earnings followed by a week with no earnings, they cannot simply file regular claims but must restart their claims for the week with no earnings. This will prompt questions about why there were no earnings (e.g., did the person refuse work, were they fired, did they quit, etc...). The unemployment system makes this entirely unclear and as a result many people get fall into this trap that includes a denial for all subsequent weeks. Our client was one such victim; however, we appealed and prevailed at a telephone hearing by showing that the person did not have any work available during the week with no earnings. As a result, a substantial overpayment was eliminated for our client.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
March 3, 2021
.

Unemployment Benefits Approved After Termination:

Our client was hired as an account representative with certain revenue goals to meet. Despite meeting those goals and receiving a promotion, the Employer added additional performance criteria that our client did not meet for one month. After the Employer terminated our client and ODJFS initially denied benefits, we prevailed at a telephone hearing by showing that our client was a good employee, met the performance expectations he was given when hired, and the new performance expectations were not reasonable. As a result, his benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
February 26, 2021
.

PUA Benefits Approved:

Our client had sporadic W-2 employment during 2019 that came to an end, but she was also hired to start a new job in 2021. The new job offer was rescinded due to COVID. She applied for and was denied PUA benefits because they determined the reason the W-2 employment came to and end was not COVID related. During a telephone hearing, we persuaded that the hearing officer that, regardless of why the W-2 employment came to an end, she qualified for PUA benefits because she was hired to start another job but that new job offer was rescinded due to COVID. As a result, unemployment benefits were approved.

  
Unemployment Appeal Won
February 26, 2021
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Unemployment Case Won in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas:

Our client found her hours at work cut in half and benefits eliminated. The employer said that it would work to restore her hours, but after seven weeks they remained the same. As a result, she resigned. ODJFS and Hearing Officer Leanne Colton of the UCRC concluded that she did not have just cause to resign. We appealed the case to court, drafted legal briefs, and obtained a decision reversing the earlier denials and approving her benefits.

  
Unemployment Court Appeal Won
February 23, 2021
.

Out-of-Office Notice - through August 2, 2021

While we typically encourage and provide free consultations every day, Mr. Smith will be unavailable to provide consultations until August 3, 2021. He will be available for free consultations after that time.

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Smith's Ohio Legal Blog

Please keep in mind that the success of any legal matter depends on the unique circumstances of each case and we cannot guarantee particular results for future clients based on successes we have achieved in past legal matters.
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