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Davis v. Mississippi Dep't of Empl. Sec.

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

September 16, 2014

EDDIE J. DAVIS APPELLANT
v.
MISSISSIPPI DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY APPELLEE

COURT FROM WHICH APPEALED: LOWNDES COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT. DATE OF JUDGMENT: 09/06/2013 TRIAL JUDGE: HON. LEE J. HOWARD. TRIAL COURT DISPOSITION: AFFIRMED BOARD OF REVIEW'S DISMISSAL OF UNTIMELY APPEAL.

EDDIE J. DAVIS, APPELLANT, Pro se.

FOR APPELLEE: ALBERT BOZEMAN WHITE LEANNE FRANKLIN BRADY.

BEFORE GRIFFIS, P.J., MAXWELL AND FAIR, JJ.

OPINION

NATURE OF THE CASE: CIVIL - STATE BOARDS AND AGENCIES

MAXWELL, J.

¶1. In his appeal of the denial of benefits from the Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES), Eddie J. Davis focuses only on why he thinks the decision by the administrative law judge (ALJ) was wrong. But the merits of the ALJ's decision are simply not before us. The ALJ's decision became final and binding on MDES's Board of Review when Davis failed to appeal within fourteen days. Because there is nothing in the record to show " good cause" for why Davis's appeal was late, we affirm.

Page 386

Procedural History

¶2. Davis applied for unemployment benefits after being fired from the sales department of Columbus Nissan, Inc. MDES initially denied benefits because Davis had been terminated for acting inappropriately during a sales-team meeting. Within fourteen days of being mailed this initial decision, Davis requested a hearing. See Miss. Code Ann. § 71-5-517 (Rev. 2011).

¶3. On May 21, 2013, the ALJ conducted a telephonic hearing with Davis and Davis's former general manager. During this hearing, the ALJ confirmed not once, but twice, that Davis's mailing address was correct. At the end of the hearing, the ALJ concluded Davis had in fact been fired for misconduct connected to his work, which disqualified him from receiving unemployment benefits. See Miss. Code Ann. § 71-5-513(A)(1)(b) (Rev. 2011).

¶4. The very next day, May 22, 2013, the ALJ mailed her decision to Davis. The decision expressly stated that the " decision will become final on 06/05/13, which is fourteen (14) calendar days from the date this decision was mailed, unless you file an appeal with the Board of Review and/or request a hearing of the case by 06/05/13." While Davis did appeal, he waited too late. He filed his appeal June 6, 2013--one day after the ALJ's decision had become final. Thus, the Board dismissed Davis's appeal as untimely.

¶5. Davis appealed to the circuit court. He began his brief by claiming the reason his appeal to the Board of Review was late was that he had never received the ALJ's decision. The circuit court affirmed the Board's decision.

¶6. Davis further appealed to this court. In his brief submitted to this court, he does not mention the fact his appeal to the Board of Review was dismissed as untimely. Nor does he ...


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