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Employment Lawyer Network:

Susan K. Lessack (Editor)

Pepper Hamilton LLP
Pennsylvania Employment Law

(610) 640-7806

Click for Full Bio

Susan K. Lessack is a partner in the Berwyn and Philadelphia offices of Pepper Hamilton LLP. She concentrates her practice in employment counseling and employment litigation. Ms. Lessack’s experience includes counseling employers on matters related to compliance with federal and state labor and employment laws, counseling regarding employee discipline and terminations, conducting investigations of employee conduct, including harassment, training employers on their obligations under employment laws and litigation avoidance, and developing employment policies. She defends employers in litigation of employment discrimination claims, wrongful discharge claims, and claims under federal and state employment-related statutes, such as the Family and Medical Leave Act and the Pennsylvania Wage Payment and Collection Law.

Shapiro among officials pushing back against PAID

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro is one of 11 state AGs who recently told Secretary of Labor Alex Acosta they have big problems with his agency’s new Payroll Audit Independent Determination program.

Five women leave Harrisburg, Pa. TV station in four months

Harrisburg television station WHTM ABC27 is the target of a Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission complaint that alleges Robert Bee, the station’s general manager, created a hostile work environment for women.

Regular safety complaints could spell legal trouble

Be careful if a worker files a steady stream of safety complaints. If those complaints are followed by an accident or incident and the worker is disciplined for something seemingly unrelated, he may still be able to make a whistleblower complaint.

Resist temptation to rubber-stamp terminations

Don’t just automatically approve a manager’s recommended discipline. Always conduct an independent investigation to verify that the manager is being fair and reasonable.

When planning layoffs, conduct audit to ensure there’s no age discrimination

Calculate the average age of the workers you plan to retain and compare it to the workers you plan to terminate.

It’s tough to prove bias if the manager who hired was also the one who fired

A manager who knew of someone’s protected characteristic would not have hired that applicant and then turn around and fired the same individual because of that very protected characteristic. A biased manager would never have hired her in the first place.

When discussing ADA accommodations, track every offer and counter-offer

If a worker refuses to accept an offered accommodation, the employer is free to end the accommodations process—which may even mean the employee loses her job.

Anti-harassment policy alone isn’t enough

It goes without saying that every employer should have a robust policy prohibiting sexual harassment. But just having a policy isn’t enough.

Worker who quit wants old job back? Too bad

Sometimes, workers quit without warning. Then, after cooling off, they may reconsider and ask to come back—in effect, “unresigning.” If you have already documented the original resignation, you don’t have to take the worker back and you generally won’t face liability for an adverse employment action.

Pennsylvania DLI proposal would more than double exempt threshold

The Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry has submitted a proposed rule to amend the regulations that exempt executive, administrative and professional salaried workers from overtime requirements under Pennsylvania’s Minimum Wage Act of 1968.