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Artist Is Not Wholly|Unemployed, Court Says

(CN) - A New York artist who marketed her art and maintained a Web site after losing her teaching job is not entitled to unemployment benefits, because state law doesn't consider her totally unemployed, a New York appellate court ruled.

Sculptor Jacqueline Germanow claimed the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board unfairly ended her unemployment benefits and charged her for overpayment of benefits. Germanow received more than $6,000 in benefits before the board ended payments.

Germanow continued selling her artwork, attending conferences, showing work in galleries and writing checks for business-related expenses while accepting unemployment benefits. Her Web site features a resume detailing exhibitions and her education.

The court considered Germanow's actions self-employment activities.

"It has been held that a claimant who performs activities on behalf of a business, even if minimal, will not be considered totally unemployed so long as the claimant stands to benefit financially from the continued existence of the business," the court ruled.

In justifying the board's charge for overpayment of benefits, the appeals court noted that Germanow received a handbook telling her to report self-employment activities, but she acknowledged not reporting the activities.


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