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Employee Handbooks - Work Rules - Employee Conduct: Pennsylvania

Employee Handbooks - Work Rules - Employee Conduct requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Author: Celia M. Joseph, Fisher Phillips


  • Pennsylvania is an employment at-will state. See Nature of Employment.
  • Pennsylvania's employment discrimination laws, as well as the laws of some of its cities, such as Philadelphia, protect additional classes of individuals other than those included in federal law. See Discrimination.
  • Pennsylvania employers must comply with unique notification requirements before monitoring employee telephone conversations. See Computers and Electronic Communications.
  • Pennsylvania law requires employers to set a schedule for wage payment and provide that schedule to employees prior to the start of employment. See Wage Payment.
  • Pennsylvania common law has few restrictions on drug testing; its statutory requirements pertain to unemployment compensation claims, and its motor carrier transportation law incorporates DOT drug and alcohol regulations. See Substance Abuse Testing.
  • Pennsylvania law does not dictate when employers must provide employees with meal breaks or other breaks, with the exception of workers ages fourteen through seventeen years. See Meal and Other Breaks.
  • Pennsylvania law prohibits smoking in any indoor workplace, with a few exceptions. Philadelphia also regulates how far from the employer's entrance an employee may smoke. See Smoking.