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Bethlehem Pennsylvania Legal Blog

What if I am injured while going to visit my friend?

You are going to visit a friend at their home. Once you arrive you notice someone in the yard working on your friend’s vehicle. There is oil on the driveway that you did not really notice. You slip and fall on the oil and are injured. Your friend calls the ambulance and you are rushed to the hospital with serious injuries. The doctor says you severely injured your head, spinal cord, and had bruises to your tailbone.

Will you be responsible for paying the medical costs, or should someone else be?

Judge rules in favor of pharmacist terminated from Giant Eagle

If you're a pharmacist, part of your job is clarifying medications and prescriptions. If you have to do so over the phone, that's normally an acceptable way to do business.

According to the story, the pharmacist, who was then working at Giant Eagle, had been an employee for 28 years. He was fired after being accused of "breaking the law" when he called doctors to clarify contradictory orders on their prescriptions. The company claimed he could not take prescriptions over the phone based on company policy, but that policy applies to pharmacy technicians.

Recognize retaliation in the workplace

You have been working for a company for some time, but recently, you haven't been happy. You filed a claim because you believed that your employer wasn't being fair to you.

You asked for assistance with a religious request, so that you could celebrate a holiday. The employer didn't allow it and now seems to be making you work harder than usual.

Understanding sexual harassment in the workplace

Sexual harassment truly has no place in a workplace, yet it exists and affects people every day. It doesn't just affect women; sexual harassment affects men and women alike. It can be caused by customers, coworkers, bosses, supervisors or others.

The U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC) defined this kind of harassment to make sure there is no confusion over what constitutes a crime. It is defined as any unwelcome advances or conduct perceived as sexual in nature that ends up interfering with a person's job. Sexual harassment can be a one-off event or something that happens time and time again. The overriding issue is that it causes a hostile, offensive environment, which is unwelcome in the workplace.

Protecting your job: How to take time off and keep your job

It's extremely difficult to determine what to do when someone you love is sick. Do you take time off work? Can you miss work without losing your job? Can you take leave or do you have to use sick time?

The fortunate thing is that many people fall under the protection of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The FMLA was designed to protect people who have to take off work for a period of time due to your child's birth, the placement of a child into your care or to care for a family member with a serious health condition. You may also take leave if you need to take care of your own serious medical condition.

What do you do if you've made a claim for unemployment benefits?

Once you open an unemployment claim, you'll receive a claims confirmation and be able to track your claim online. You need to continue to claim biweekly in accordance with your claims handbook's rules or regulations.

After this, you should register for work within 30 days of filing your claim for unemployment benefits. You can register at JobGateway, Pennsylvania's employment search engine. If you don't do this within 30 days, then you won't be able to obtain benefits in the state and will become ineligible. To avoid this, file your claim as soon as possible. Additionally, begin actively searching for work through the service as quickly as possible.

The state has to determine if you are financially eligible for benefits based on the information you've provided. You will receive the financial determination and be able to review it and how the benefits you're entitled to were calculated by the state. You can always provide more information if the benefit determination you receive isn't what you expected.

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, "I've opened a UC claim. What happens next?," accessed May 15, 2018

What can you do if you're harassed in the workplace?

It is hard to live with harassment of any kind, but sexual harassment is one of the most uncomfortable types to deal with. You may feel objectified and victimized easily, worrying about anything and everything you do on the job.

It's a good idea to talk to your employer if you feel you're being sexually harassed on the job. Sexual harassment is a kind of sex discrimination and is illegal thanks to Title VII in the Civil Rights Act.

Altoona Water Authority in hot water for discrimination case

When a custodian was fired, it immediately drew attention. Now, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has stated that the Altoona Water Authority did violate the custodian's rights by firing him. According to the man's claims, his supervisor continually harassed him and even said he was a "fat, broke-down old man." He reported the incident and was fired shortly after.

The EEOC believes that firing the custodian violated the man's right to file a claim without retaliation and also violated the Age Discrimination in Employment Act forbidding employers to discriminate against employees who have made age discrimination claims and charges against a company or individual.

Do today's automobile safety features prevent accidents?

The automobile industry has introduced a wide range of safety features in recent years. How effective are they in preventing collisions?

Consumer Reports asked that question and reported its findings in a recent article. Here are highlights from what they discovered.

Should you take photos after a car accident?

No one expects to be involved in a car accident. Driving has become an everyday part of life and many drivers fail to appreciate its inherent dangers. After an accident, you may be disoriented, panicking and unsure of what to do next. However, you will want to take a minute to clear your head and evaluate the situation. The actions you take immediately after a car accident can have a significant impact on your health, insurance claim and potential personal injury claim.

Photos are a useful tool to substantiate your accident claim and to remember key details you may otherwise forget. Do you know what you should photograph after a motor vehicle accident?