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Pennsylvania

Employment Lawyer Network:
Pennsylvania

Susan K. Lessack (Editor)

Pepper Hamilton LLP
Pennsylvania Employment Law

LessackS@PepperLaw.com
(610) 640-7806

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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.

Suspended ‘pending investigation:’ What information do we owe the employee?

08/11/2015
Q. If an employer suspends an employee “pending investigation,” what information must be provided to the employee?

Supreme Court clarifies how to accommodate pregnant employees

07/24/2015
Over the last several years, legislatures around the United States have worked to increase protections for pregnant workers, and the EEOC has identified the treatment of pregnant women in the workplace as one of its top priorities.

Red Robin tip pool case to move forward in court

07/24/2015
Two former servers at Red Robin Res­­­­taurants in Wilkes-Barre and Dick­­son City, Pennsylvania, can proceed with their Fair Labor Standards Act class action against franchisee, Lehigh Valley Res­­tau­­rant Group, Inc. The suit alleges Lehigh’s tip pooling scheme violates the FLSA because it includes workers who only have a de minimus interaction with customers.

$1.25M lesson: Blue collar work is always eligible for OT

07/24/2015
A Texas-based oil and gas drilling company, ROC Services Inc., has settled an overtime lawsuit filed by two workers in Pennsylvania. Two employees testing wells filed suit, alleging the employer’s pay scheme ran afoul of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Giant stores boosts minimum pay to $9 per hour

07/24/2015
Giant Food Markets raised the minimum wage it pays for any position to $9 per hour in June. The change affected approximately two-thirds of the company’s 33,000 employees at both its Giant and Martin’s locations.

Policies are worthless if they’re not communicated

07/24/2015
An accountant for the state Depart­­ment of Health will get his job back after Commonwealth Court determined that, contrary to the given reason for his firing, his e-mail was not “combative”, “antagonistic”, or “accusatory.”

Absence alone isn’t grounds to deny unemployment comp

07/24/2015
Employees discharged for being absent may still be eligible for unemployment compensation. That’s because employees must have committed willful misconduct to lose the right to benefits. An employee fired for missing work because he couldn’t call in or otherwise comply with his employer’s call-off procedure, for example, would still be eligible.

Manager using slurs? Quick discipline limits your damage

07/24/2015
What should you do if you receive reports that a manager has uttered offensive slurs?

New boss is tougher on employees? That’s not bias without other evidence

07/24/2015
Does the arrival of a tougher scoring supervisor also mean extra liablity? Not necessarily, as a recent case shows.

Having a casual FMLA and sick leave policy can lead to formal charges

07/24/2015

It may be disruptive and expensive to provide an employee with up to 12 weeks of FMLA leave and continue to cover your share of an employee’s health insurance premiums. But ignoring your FMLA obligation—or trying to find creative ways around it—can be even more costly to your organization. Consider this recent Pennsylvania case in which the employee ended up losing her medical coverage during a health crisis. The employer has now been ordered to pay the employee’s medical bills directly.