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Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Inc. v. Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, No. 30 EAP 2016 (June 20, 2017)

Articles Discussing Case:

An “Employee’s” Right to Inspect His or Her Personnel File in Pennsylvania

Fisher Phillips • October 24, 2017
Employers commonly find themselves answering the following question: What right does a former employee have to access his or her personnel file? Often, after an employer terminates an employee, that employee and/or the employee’s attorney demands access to the employee’s personnel file. Up until a recent decision out of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania on this issue, employers found themselves in a precarious position of whether they granted the former employee’s request. The Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals, Inc. v. Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry case now equips employers with the clear right to say no to the former employee’s request. 162 A.3d 384 (Pa. 2017).

Pennsylvania Highest Court Has Spoken: Former Employees Are Not Entitled to Inspect Their Personnel Files

Ogletree Deakins • July 05, 2017
Since January 6, 2016, almost 18 months ago, in accordance with a decision by the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, employers in the state of Pennsylvania have been required to allow recently separated employees access to their personnel files on the same footing as current employees. That 2016 decision reversed the common thinking among employers in Pennsylvania that only current employees had the right to access their personnel files, and that former employees—no matter how long ago they had been separated—were not entitled to such access. Fortunately for employers, in the recent opinion issued by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Inc. v. Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, No. 30 EAP 2016 (June 20, 2017), that 2016 decision was reversed. The state supreme court held that a recently terminated employee is not an “employee” and, thus, is not entitled to inspect his or her personnel file according to the Pennsylvania Inspection of Employment Records Law (Personnel Files Act).