Stop your employer from breaking the law!

How knowledgeable are you on the employee rights in PA? As an employee you know you have rights, but do you know what your employee rights are?  Can you be terminated on the spot without reasonable cause? Are employees allowed meal breaks?  What are the laws regarding overtime?

If these questions leave you scratching your head – you’re not alone! At the Law Offices of Thomas More Holland, we want you to be aware of your employee rights in PA!

Employee Rights in PA:  3 Facts

Fact #1

Pennsylvania is an ‘employee at-will’ state. The employee at-will doctrine means that you will be employed for an indefinite amount of time until your job is terminated by your employer or by resigning your position. Essentially, an employer can terminate an employee’s position for no reason at all.

However, there are always exceptions to the rules. While Pennsylvania is an employee at-will state, it is illegal for any employer to fire an employee for discriminatory reasons.  According to Nolo Law, Pennsylvania specifically prohibits wrongful termination based on “race, color, ancestry, national origin, sex, pregnancy, religion, age (40 to 70), disability, relationship or association with a disabled person, use of a service animal, or having a GED rather than a high school diploma”.  Pennsylvania employers with at least 4 employees must comply with these laws.

Fact #2

Pennsylvania employees must be paid at least $7.25 an hour. By 2017, city workers will see an increase in minimum wage to $12.50.

Employees are entitled to overtime pay for any hours they work over a 40 hour work week.  Overtime pay is 1 ½ times your normal pay.

Your employer is not allowed to deduct pay from your paycheck due to damages. Deductions from your paycheck shall only come in the form of health insurance or taxes.

Fact #3

Pennsylvania employees have the right to unpaid leave.  Pennsylvania law does not require employers to offer paid leave but they must provide unpaid leave in certain circumstances.

  • Jury Duty  – Employees must be permitted unpaid time off if they are summoned for jury duty.
  • Family and Medical Leave – The Family and Medical Leave Act requires that employers provide employees with 12 weeks of unpaid time off each year due to serious health conditions or to care for a family member with serious medical conditions.  Those that take leave will still continue to receive benefits, and will be reinstated to the same position they had before they left.
  • Military Leave – Both federal and Pennsylvania laws require employers to allow military personnel to take unpaid leave for up to 5 years for military duties. Employees may receive health benefits up to 30 days after they leave, and must be reinstated to their former job position once they return.

If you have more questions about employee rights in PA, please contact TMH Law today!