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-   -   RAV acting strangely, legal resources? (https://www.englishforum.ch/employment/305061-rav-acting-strangely-legal-resources.html)

airman 20.07.2021 13:28

RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Hi All,

I'm starting to get the feeling that the RAV (Unemployment office) is acting like a police officer that pulls one over for not having enough blinker fluid (I'm starting to smell bs from their side). I'm hearing things spoken verbally that then change 180 degrees to be the opposite when written, seeing delays in communication created to force deadlines to be missed, as well as seeing them try to find every possible excuse and tiny technicality to try an avoid meeting their responsibilities towards the insured. Normally for such situations one just gets a good lawyer but it seems that they're all on vacation now.

I also know that there are generally legal advisory services for insured persons to find out what the law says about what the insurance is doing and that this applies to unemployment insurance (ALV) as well, but I'm not sure who to contact. The Canton is Bern if that makes a difference.

So my question is this:
What legal options / resources are available to find out if the RAV is really allowed to do what they're attempting or if they're just claiming they can because the average insured person has no idea what they can and cannot do?

I'm thinking the government should have some kind of legal advice number to call and there might be some groups that offer assistance to others because they themselves had problems.

What legal or other resources are available to a person to make sure that the RAV is actually doing what they're allowed to do an nothing more?

Also, does filing a formal complaint help any, and if so, where does one do that / how does one do that?

Thanks!

P.S: If anyone is a lawyer and wants to advise, please PM me.

kri 20.07.2021 13:48

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by airman (Post 3329580)
Hi All,

I'm starting to get the feeling that the RAV (Unemployment office) is acting like a police officer that pulls one over for not having enough blinker fluid (I'm starting to smell bs from their side). I'm hearing things spoken verbally that then change 180 degrees to be the opposite when written, seeing delays in communication created to force deadlines to be missed, as well as seeing them try to find every possible excuse and tiny technicality to try an avoid meeting their responsibilities towards the insured. Normally for such situations one just gets a good lawyer but it seems that they're all on vacation now.

I also know that there are generally legal advisory services for insured persons to find out what the law says about what the insurance is doing and that this applies to unemployment insurance (ALV) as well, but I'm not sure who to contact. The Canton is Bern if that makes a difference.

So my question is this:
What legal options / resources are available to find out if the RAV is really allowed to do what they're attempting or if they're just claiming they can because the average insured person has no idea what they can and cannot do?

I'm thinking the government should have some kind of legal advice number to call and there might be some groups that offer assistance to others because they themselves had problems.

What legal or other resources are available to a person to make sure that the RAV is actually doing what they're allowed to do an nothing more?

Also, does filing a formal complaint help any, and if so, where does one do that / how does one do that?

Thanks!

P.S: If anyone is a lawyer and wants to advise, please PM me.

Your legal insurance?

Susie-Q 20.07.2021 13:58

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
We can't really advise you here as you haven't really given enough information.

Keep in mind that RAV is no fun and games and they will do everything they can to make sure you are out of their responsibility and are employed on another job.

Juliet31 20.07.2021 14:22

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
It is very difficult to give any kind of advice without knowing the exact details of the situation. I was with RAV for a couple of months a few years back (also canton Berne)and they were always crystal clear.
Maybe with the Covid situation they are at their limit with dealing with everyone? What you need to know is, that RAV is very strict. Their main objective is to get you back into work as soon as possible. Basically they tell you what to do and you say: yes and Amen. That is the way it works.

So, as I said at the beginning it is difficult to give you good advice without knowing fully what the problem. With me they were always tough, but fair. Could it be, that you are just not getting your way?

jacek 20.07.2021 14:25

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Susie-Q (Post 3329593)
We can't really advise you here as you haven't really given enough information.

Keep in mind that RAV is no fun and games and they will do everything they can to make sure you are out of their responsibility and are employed on another job.

IMHO, he has to be more specific as to describe what really went wrong before any advice can be given. You cannot simply say that the whole system is wrong as usually it is fair and very transparent if you obey the rules. Of course, there could be individuals who do not make the cooperation easy but it can be solved depending on where really problem is. Given only the info above, it’s just another baseless general rant not bringing anything relevant into the whole discussion.

Ato 20.07.2021 14:29

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jacek (Post 3329604)
IMHO, he has to be more specific as to describe what really went wrong before any advice can be given. You cannot simply say that the whole system is wrong as usually it is fair and very transparent if you obey the rules. Of course, there could be individuals who do not make the cooperation easy but it can be solved depending on where really problem is. Given only the info above, it’s just another baseless general rant not bringing anything relevant into the whole discussion.

Given the info in the OP's previous posts, they either want to keep receiving RAV abroad, or to pause the RAV in order to go abroad. Both of which the RAV would rightfully be strict about.

Juliet31 20.07.2021 14:32

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ato (Post 3329605)
Given the info in the OP's previous posts, they either want to keep receiving RAV abroad, or to pause the RAV in order to go abroad. Both of which the RAV would rightfully be strict about.

Exactly!!! Think of RAV as your employer and then ask yourself: am I being reasonable with my request?

jacek 20.07.2021 14:52

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ato (Post 3329605)
Given the info in the OP's previous posts, they either want to keep receiving RAV abroad, or to pause the RAV in order to go abroad. Both of which the RAV would rightfully be strict about.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Juliet31 (Post 3329607)
Exactly!!! Think of RAV as your employer and then ask yourself: am I being reasonable with my request?

The name of the game is to play by the rules and one should not try anything bizarre. Basically, like with any insurance company governed by their T&C’s.

CliiniMuus 20.07.2021 14:56

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Could you please give an example of something which was different to what they told you in person? Also, which language are you communicating with them in please?


No big deal, but I'm guessing this is just you expressing your frustration, as it's factually inaccurate:
"Normally for such situations one just gets a good lawyer but it seems that they're all on vacation now."


Through fear, through poverty, through being overwhelmed, through having no network, through drowning in existing problems, through having to weigh-up paying 1 bill or the other, plenty of people seeking social help never, ever access legal support, let alone a "good" solicitor.



It's why we have so many voluntary services set-up to try to catch some of those struggling with even the first steps, like filling-out the application form to ask for RAV support.

Pachyderm 20.07.2021 15:04

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ato (Post 3329605)
Given the info in the OP's previous posts, they either want to keep receiving RAV abroad, or to pause the RAV in order to go abroad. Both of which the RAV would rightfully be strict about.

It is possible to receive RAV while abroad but, as you say, there are rules. Under the EURES initiative, you can leave CH for 3 months as long as you are still looking for work. And you're entitled to 4 weeks paid holiday per year. But if you travel abroad without telling the RAV then you're in for some difficult explaining if/when they find out.

Urs Max 20.07.2021 15:16

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Going by OP's posting history, this may answer the question.

In particular the start:
Quote:

Hello Felro!

A visit at the weekend is probably not a problem because you don't receive daily unemployment insurance benefits for the Saturdays and Sundays in the month anyway, because only five daily benefits are paid per week and the staff of the RAV and unemployment insurance funds don't work at the weekend and won't call on you for an appointment at the RAV at the weekend. Being back in Switzerland within 48 hours is not enough.

You must be ready to be in Switzerland the next day for an interview or for an appointment at the RAV if the RAV contacts you the day before. Otherwise you are not considered employable because you are not willing and able to take up a job offered at short notice, and employability is one of the legal requirements for daily unemployment insurance benefits.

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

Ato 20.07.2021 15:17

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Pachyderm (Post 3329620)
It is possible to receive RAV while abroad but, as you say, there are rules. Under the EURES initiative, you can leave CH for 3 months as long as you are still looking for work. And you're entitled to 4 weeks paid holiday per year. But if you travel abroad without telling the RAV then you're in for some difficult explaining if/when they find out.

Understood, but from the OP's previous posts they need to take care of a family member, so I can see why the RAV is being seen as "difficult".

LtSoftDrink 20.07.2021 17:57

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Did you apply for jobs as per your monthly quota? Did you file your efforts as per the existing deadlines? If yes, please specify the “communication issues” and “technicalities” you refer to.

Generally, don’t expect much support, many useful suggestions. Keep in mind, if you thought they were nice, you might be tempted to hang out a bit longer.

swisspea 20.07.2021 19:06

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
I have had to deal with RAV twice in the past two years. Both times they were efficient....it was the insurance that was more troublesome (and a huge amount of paperwork - they requested documents that had already been given, took many months to pay anything and were really hopeless to try to communicate with....



The rules, from what I experienced, are very clear, and assume it takes time to learn and adapt. That said, I am generally a good 'advocate' for myself - I push the boundaries somewhat and assert my intelligence and qualifications (In my home country I could take the job that they do and would be specifically qualified to do it).


How long have you been looking for work ? I was partially unemployed for about 4 months during the covid lockdown (bad timing!) and then another month between my previous and current job....



I do think they seemed tougher second time around...partially covid, partly I think they are basically burning out, and partly I think they may be under pressure to deliver fast...


The longer you are out of work, the harder you are to place.... If you have already been out of work for 3-6 months you are already transitioning from short-to-long-term unemployed....

airman 20.07.2021 19:36

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Hello everyone,
Thank you for the comments.


Please don't try to read into the situation too much, especially not based on previous posts.


I'm just asking how the system works here, not ranting at all.



I'm trying to figure out where to turn for legal advice, but not expecting forum member to give legal advice.


Generally speaking, for as generic of a situation as possible, what resources does a person in Switzerland have to legally understand what the RAV (or the insurance company behind them), is allowed to do or not do?


If someone could point me in the right direction as to who to turn to, that would be wonderful. I don't want to rant here or bash the system or anything, just trying to understand the "rules of the game" and who the referee's are if I have questions about the rules.


Any help in this regard would be much appreciated.

Medea Fleecestealer 20.07.2021 20:00

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
There's no insurance company behind RAV. It's cantonal/federal run as far as I know.

The rules of the game are you start looking for a new job as soon as you know you're going to be unemployed, you register with RAV, they tell you how many jobs you need to apply for each month, may send you on something like a language course, etc, if they think it'll help your employment chances.

https://www.ch.ch/en/unemployment-ri...d-obligations/

st2lemans 20.07.2021 20:36

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
RAV doesn't pay, ALK does.

RAV determines if you have the right to payments, ALK then pays you.

Tom

st2lemans 20.07.2021 20:37

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Medea Fleecestealer (Post 3329727)
There's no insurance company behind RAV. It's cantonal/federal run as far as I know.

Wrong.

ALK pays you, NOT RAV!

Tom

Susie-Q 20.07.2021 21:01

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by airman (Post 3329721)
Hello everyone,
Thank you for the comments.


Please don't try to read into the situation too much, especially not based on previous posts.


I'm just asking how the system works here, not ranting at all.



I'm trying to figure out where to turn for legal advice, but not expecting forum member to give legal advice.


Generally speaking, for as generic of a situation as possible, what resources does a person in Switzerland have to legally understand what the RAV (or the insurance company behind them), is allowed to do or not do?


If someone could point me in the right direction as to who to turn to, that would be wonderful. I don't want to rant here or bash the system or anything, just trying to understand the "rules of the game" and who the referee's are if I have questions about the rules.


Any help in this regard would be much appreciated.

Please don’t be afraid to ask for help or rant - but do you have legal insurance? Lawyers in these parts as in any part of the world are quite expensive. I believe there is help if people make under a certain income or are refugees - but otherwise it is a fortune.

Case in point - I needed help with a situation once before I learned about legal insurance and it cost me 7,000 CHF for not too much work. It was worth it, but I also learned to get legal insurance after that. :)

Otherwise there is free advice here from people who may be “experts” - you just have to share more. If you don’t want to, understood.

litespeed 20.07.2021 21:24

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
I do hope the OP isn't referring to him/herself in the third person when he/she is talking to his/her RAV officer.

st2lemans 20.07.2021 21:56

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
So what have they done strangely? :confused:

Tom

Mullhollander 20.07.2021 22:18

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by airman (Post 3329721)
Hello everyone,

Generally speaking, for as generic of a situation as possible, what resources does a person in Switzerland have to legally understand what the RAV (or the insurance company behind them), is allowed to do or not do?


RAV/ ALV regulations are at this link (German):

https://www.arbeit.swiss/secoalv/en/...ig-praxis.html

Searching the internet will produce articles on RAV from Beobachter, SRF Kassensturz, K-Geld, Blick and other publications.

airman 20.07.2021 23:38

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mullhollander (Post 3329772)
RAV/ ALV regulations are at this link (German):

https://www.arbeit.swiss/secoalv/en/...ig-praxis.html

Searching the internet will produce articles on RAV from Beobachter, SRF Kassensturz, K-Geld, Blick and other publications.


Thank you Mullhollander! This is more along the lines of the information I was looking for!


To answer other questions: No, legal insurance is not applicable to this situation as it occurred when no legal insurance was already present.



For clarity: The RAV is a government office that manages unemployed persons. They control / check if unemployed persons are meeting the "obligations" that the ALV (Arbeitslosenversicherung) / Unemployment-Insurance-Company have as a condition of being insured by them. In Switzerland, as I understand it, paying into the unemployment insurance (it's taken out of your pay every month) is compulsory, but I do not believe that an employee can choose which insurance company is responsible for insurance against unemployment situations. I believe this is either chosen by the employer or the Canton (State).


Generally:
RAV (Regionale Arbeitsvermittlungszentrum)= Controlling Govt. Agency (like police)

ALV (Arbeitslosen Versicherung) = Insurance company that actually does the insuring (like parlament / legislation of terms and conditions)

ALK (Arbeitslosenkasse) = They manage the payments and the amount of time left to be paid (like a bank).


My questions refer to what terms and conditions apply. The ALV (like parliament / legislators) likely defines these and the RAV enforces these (like police).


My basic question is, if I'm not happy with how the RAV (police) is enforcing the terms and conditions of the ALV (legislation) to whom can I turn for legal advice?


Does the Canton of Bern have a legal advice telephone number for this to give advice?


Does the insurance company have a legal advice telephone number for this? (For reference, most do in the US, but Switzerland is not the US).


Are there independent groups / agencies / etc. that offer advice? Like CAI (Citizens for the Appropriate use of Insurance) that is a group of like-minded individuals who want to help others know their rights in insurances cases.



Put another way, if you, personally were unhappy with how the RAV was handling something like, for example, they told you take a picture of yourself with the hiring manager and CEO of every company you apply for (ridiculous example, I know, but the point is that what the RAV is demanding seems unreasonable), to whom would you turn? Who could advise you that actually there is no legal requirement for you to take such photographs and the RAV actually cannot demand this of you.



The danger is, if you do NOT know your rights, the RAV (same applies to police) can tell you literally anything and you will have to comply or risk the consequences, if you are not informed and equipped to fight it, even if it is untrue or not applicable.



As another example, if the police gives me a 300 CHF ticket for driving 120 km/h in a 120 km/h zone because they claim 120 km/h is only meant for cars with a 3 Liter engine or greater, how can I know if this is legit? If I don't know or do not have a resource to advise me or at least the written law to reference, I will end up paying that 300 CHF even though it just goes into the policeman's back pocket because there are no such laws.



I truly appreciate the help you all have given me so far and look forward to further responses. Great group of people on this forum!

Landers 21.07.2021 00:48

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
In general you need to convince the RAV that you're fulfilling the expectation of actively looking for work. Very often you can write down any old nonsense. However, if they get suspicious they have a right to investigate and if some of your job-searching claims seem to be illegitimate they can ask for further proof. For example, if you said you had lunch with a hiring manager, they ask that manager and the manger says he's never met you, you're going to need to come up with some kind of evidence that you did meet them. A one off might be over-looked as an oddity but otherwise I suppose you could be seen to be trying to defraud the unemployment insurance.

If this is something like the case then I think it's about time the RAV paid more attention as there seems to be loads of people abusing the system.

doropfiz 21.07.2021 05:20

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
https://www.fedlex.admin.ch/eli/cc/1...4_2184_2184/de

Bundesgesetz
über die obligatorische Arbeitslosenversicherung
und die Insolvenzentschädigung
(Arbeitslosenversicherungsgesetz, AVIG)

This is the Swiss law on unemployment insurance. It is available in German, French and Italian. If you don't have enough command if one of those, it can help to do two machine translations, one with deepl and the other with google translate, and also to translate from each of the three languages into English.

doropfiz 21.07.2021 05:30

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Here, for Bern, is the general info for unemployed people, setting out the steps and requirements:
https://www.weu.be.ch/de/start/theme...tnehmende.html

You might find some answers at "Das müssen Sie wissen".

st2lemans 21.07.2021 07:39

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
So in what way do you find they are acting strangely?

Anyway, hire a lawyer, but expect nothing.

Tom

Hausamsee 21.07.2021 08:20

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Juliet31 (Post 3329601)
Basically they tell you what to do and you say: yes and Amen. That is the way it works.

So, as I said at the beginning it is difficult to give you good advice without knowing fully what the problem.

…don‘t generalise, your 2 month experience might not be the same as others!

It also depends on what level you are at in your vocation so saying `yes and Amen`in any case is ridiculous and I can`t imagine it will help to get you in a better place. You generally have to be open and work with them. We are not living in a dictatorship situation here in Switzerland so don‘t mislead.

Susie-Q 21.07.2021 09:01

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by airman (Post 3329810)
Does the Canton of Bern have a legal advice telephone number for this to give advice?

Here you go:

https://www.justice.be.ch/justice/de...sberatung.html

doropfiz 21.07.2021 10:40

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Here's what looks like a general - free! - advice centre in Bern (disclaimer: I found it only by googling and know nothing more about it)
https://www.triio.ch/angebot/beratun...dlichen-fragen

And here's a page explaining how the RAV works and - I presume, although I haven't read it all - some info about what is and isn't allowed:
https://www.arbeit.swiss/secoalv/en/...ternehmen.html (in English)
Please be aware that for all government matters in Switzerland, English translations are not binding, but are provided only as a courtesy and, as such, they are sometimes less comprehensive than the original Swiss language. I haven't checked whetheror not this is the case on this site.

In addition, the City of Bern has an Ombudsstelle: https://www.bern.ch/politik-und-verw...g/ombudsstelle, although I don't know whether this would also cover the RAV, but they would know if there is such a service.

Snoopy 21.07.2021 13:33

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Maybe I have missed it, but has the OP actually given any concrete examples of what the RAV is actually supposed to be doing wrong (in their opinion)?

Landers 21.07.2021 13:53

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Snoopy (Post 3329944)
Maybe I have missed it, but has the OP actually given any concrete examples of what the RAV is actually supposed to be doing wrong (in their opinion)?

No, his question was where to go for help. He doesn't want to share here.

Susie-Q 21.07.2021 14:07

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Snoopy (Post 3329944)
Maybe I have missed it, but has the OP actually given any concrete examples of what the RAV is actually supposed to be doing wrong (in their opinion)?

OP insinuated one point, which does seem like a rather odd request from RAV, not sure if it is against any laws though:

"for example, they told you take a picture of yourself with the hiring manager and CEO of every company you apply for"

roegner 21.07.2021 14:12

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Susie-Q (Post 3329960)
OP insinuated one point, which does seem like a rather odd request from RAV, not sure if it is against any laws though:

"for example, they told you take a picture of yourself with the hiring manager and CEO of every company you apply for"


Might that have been a misunderstanding if f.e. op does not speak the local language fluently? Geting access to the CEO will not be possible unless you apply for management positions, I´d think.

CliiniMuus 21.07.2021 14:12

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Susie-Q (Post 3329960)
OP insinuated one point, which does seem like a rather odd request from RAV, not sure if it is against any laws though:

"for example, they told you take a picture of yourself with the hiring manager and CEO of every company you apply for"


He didn't insinuate that. He explained right afterwards that he was giving a ridiculous example, presumably in order to convey the sentiment he feels about the actual request he received, in the absence of detailing the actual request. I would say it's clear from his post that that is not the request he received, hence him including "ridiculous example".

fatmanfilms 21.07.2021 14:19

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Susie-Q (Post 3329960)
OP insinuated one point, which does seem like a rather odd request from RAV, not sure if it is against any laws though:

"for example, they told you take a picture of yourself with the hiring manager and CEO of every company you apply for"

If you apply to a job in CH, they will usually immediately acknowledge the application in writing.
If you apply for an unsuitable job, they will also write a letter, thanking for your application & say unfortunately you did not get selected yet invite you to apply again next time. (They realise you need to have nice rejection letters & happily 'play the game')

CliiniMuus 21.07.2021 14:25

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fatmanfilms (Post 3329966)
If you apply to a job in CH, they will usually immediately acknowledge the application in writing.
If you apply for an unsuitable job, they will also write a letter, thanking for your application & say unfortunately you did not get selected yet invite you to apply again next time. (They realise you need to have nice rejection letters & happily 'play the game')


In volunteering, we support people sending out many, many job applications (paper and electronic), and I can say with some certainty that a large majority of applications receive no response at all (not even an automated response).


That's also consistent with complaints I hear within companies, too, when people apply for roles internally. No response is the common outcome.


It's especially hard the first few times someone experiences this, having put their all into their applications.

fatmanfilms 21.07.2021 14:32

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by CliiniMuus (Post 3329968)
In volunteering, we support people sending out many, many job applications (paper and electronic), and I can say with some certainty that a large majority of applications receive no response at all (not even an automated response).


That's also consistent with complaints I hear within companies, too, when people apply for roles internally. No response is the common outcome.


It's especially hard the first few times someone experiences this, having put their all into their applications.

I must have been lucky, I collected in excess of 500 rejection letters / emails from Swiss companies, over a 90% success rate.

roegner 21.07.2021 14:42

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
So far I have always received an (automated) reply with "thank you for your application". Which should be ok as proof for the RAV?

LtSoftDrink 21.07.2021 14:54

Re: RAV acting strangely, legal resources?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fatmanfilms (Post 3329972)
I must have been lucky, I collected in excess of 500 rejection letters / emails from Swiss companies, over a 90% success rate.

You must have made a few slight mistakes. My "success" rate was well on 99.09473 % :D
If you follow the companies procedure, an official rejection within 3 weeks is a cert...:msnsick:


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