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Governor Wolf announced on Friday that 13 additional Pennsylvania counties will move to the yellow phase of Pennsylvania’s staggered reopening plan, continuing a slow and steady strategy to permit businesses to get back to work. The counties include Allegheny, Armstrong, Bedford, Blair, Butler, Cambria, Fayette, Fulton, Greene, Indiana, Somerset, Washington and Westmoreland.

Late last week, three Philadelphia city councilmembers introduced a bill seeking to permanently amend the city’s mandatory paid sick leave law, “Promoting Healthy Families and Workplaces.” As proposed, the bill would provide a significant increase in benefits to a much larger group of workers when faced with a public health emergency.

A federal appeals court just resurrected the salary history ban that will now prevent Philadelphia employers from asking job applicants about how much they are paid or setting new salaries based on pay history. Thanks to February 6th 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals ruling, employers in Philadelphia must immediately alter their hiring practices and cease the practice of asking questions about compensation history on applications, in interviews, and at any stage during the hiring practice. You must also ensure that you do not use this forbidden information when setting new salary levels. What do employers need to know about today’s ruling and how best to come into compliance?

Last month, the Pennsylvania Superior Court weighed in on its position regarding overtime calculation under the “fluctuating workweek” method. The Court affirmed that the use of this method to determine the amount of overtime owed violates the Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act (PMWA), even though this method is permitted under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). This dichotomy is sure to raise questions for Pennsylvania employers paying non-exempt employees a weekly salary.

Last month, the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals held that an employee’s protected activity must be the “but for” cause of an adverse action to support a claim for retaliation under the False Claims Act (“FCA”). The Court further affirmed that the plaintiff’s constructive discharge claim did not establish an adverse employment action as a matter of law.

On December 11, 2017, the NLRB ruled that an ALJ in Pittsburgh properly accepted a partial settlement offered by University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) despite objections from the agency’s general counsel and the charging party. The decision swiftly reverses Obama-era policy and restores the “reasonableness” settlement standard.

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