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The HR Specialist: Pennsylvania Employment Law

Here’s a reason to be extra careful about what you say to employees regarding their pay: The Pennsylvania Wage Payment and Collection Law (WPCL) gives employees a way to collect on employers’ promises about wages, even if those promises were never put in writing …

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Gov. Rendell signed legislation last month that increases Pennsylvania’s minimum wage by $2 per hour phased in over the next two years, but smaller businesses will have more time before having to pay the higher rates …

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If your organization’s supervisors tend to ignore all that "HR talk" about FMLA leave, here’s one way to get their attention: Point out that, in addition to suing your organization, employees can sue their bosses (and HR directors!) personally for FMLA-related mistakes …

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If you’ve ever wondered whether allowing an employee to take medical leave will tie your hands if it comes time to challenge that employee’s disability claim, take heart. Just because you didn’t ask for medical proof of disability once, that doesn’t mean you can’t later …

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Here’s one more reason to double-check your job descriptions: Some exempt employees may try to claim they’re entitled to overtime pay simply because they spend a fair amount of time on filing and typing …

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Because of a quirk in Pennsylvania law, employers may soon see an uptick in state-based employment lawsuits. Reason: A federal court clarified that all state employment claims must be filed within the appropriate state statute of limitations (one year, for example, on defamation cases). Employees can’t wait to file a state claim until the EEOC or the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission completes its investigation, the court said …

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While many employees view a transfer to a different location as a positive career move, others don’t see it that way. Some employees may assume discrimination in what your organization thinks of as normal career development …

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If you receive an EEOC or PHRC complaint, don’t jump the gun to answer the charges. Carefully inspect the documents. If you don’t question obvious problems now, such as lack of a verified signature, you lose the right to raise that issue later …

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If you hire emotionally disabled employees, be sure to integrate them into your regular staff meetings and events. Avoid treating them as a separate (even if equal) component of your work force …

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Pittsburgh-based PNC Financial Services Group was cited twice last month: First by Working Mother magazine as one of the top 100 places for women to work, and then by the EEOC as a place where pregnancy discrimination is rife …

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