Caller: Paige was furloughed and is collecting unemployment. She is currently making more money than she was while employed. If she is asked to return to work but refuses, will she still be eligible to collect unemployment?
David: A lot of people are making more money on unemployment right now. Usually, to continue to collect unemployment benefits, you must be actively seeking to regain employment. There is a lack of clarity on whether there is a current requirement because of the COVID-19 situation. Regardless, both employer and employee need to update their employment status every couple weeks. The unemployment office will decide whether the employee should continue to receive benefits after reviewing their circumstances.
Takeaway: Although you are usually expected to continue to seek employment to continue to receive unemployment benefits, the guidelines for the current situation are unclear. If Paige has a reason for not wanting to return to work, she can present her case and the unemployment office will make a determination on whether she will continue to receive benefits.
Caller: Elizabeth wants to know what the requirements are for landlords on making repairs to the property? Elizabeth is a tenant and has made several requests for the landlord to repair her door which was damaged by the wind. Can the landlord charge the tenants for the broken door after they move out?
David: The best course of action is to put the landlord on written notice about the repair. It should be documented because it may not be enough to just call or physically point out the issue. If the landlord takes no action after the tenant provides written notice the tenant can make the repair themselves and submit the bill to the landlord. Another option would be to get some estimates on the repairs and submit those to the landlord to provide options to fix the door.
Takeaway: A landlord has an obligation to keep the home they are renting safe and livable. If there are issues your landlord is not addressing be sure to document this and provide written notice to your landlord. As a renter you have rights and protections to ensure you have a safe and habitable space. Consult with an attorney who specializes in tenant-landlord conflict for the best course of action for your specific scenario.
Caller: An anonymous caller shipped some THC mints out of state and the shipment did not reach the intended destination. The tracking number is not showing any data, and the package seems to be lost. The caller wants to know if they should put a claim on the lost item or if they have any other recourse? The caller wants to know if they should try sending it again?
David: First and foremost, David strongly advises that the caller never attempts this again. There are many legal consequences for shipping a controlled substance. Since the package appears to be missing, there is a possibility that it has been confiscated. The last thing the anonymous caller wants to do is go claim the confiscated package and present themselves as the culprit. There can be prison time and fines if there is enough evidence to associate you with the package. Even if your package makes it to the intended party, it does not necessarily mean you are in the clear. Sometimes a criminal package will deliberately be allowed to arrive at the intended destination so that the evidence can be used in a future sting operation.
Takeaway: Never ship controlled substances. This is a federal crime and the penalties can be severe.