How long can I be suspended without pay?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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How long can I be suspended without pay?

I am currently suspended without pay while an investigation is being done to determine termination. I have accumulated points that result in termination for tardiness and absence. However, I was tardy on 09/18 when my mother was rushed to the hospital and on 09/25 I took the day off due to my mother having surgery. I had no personal days left had 1 week vacation time. I didn’t think of FMLA and was not told about by employer until 10/10 when a diciplenary notice was reviewed with me.

There is a 2 day limit to report FMLA request.

Asked on May 1, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You can be suspended without pay essentially forever: employment is "employment at will," and since employers can terminate you at will, they can also suspend you indefinitely. However, at the point at which it reasonably appears that they are not going to reinstate you, the suspension is considered a termination, since employees can be terminated by actions (e.g. not putting on schedule; not allowng to work) as well as by words. That point though--the point when the suspension becomes termination--is not defined; it is judged on a case by case basis and, as stated, is when a reasonable person would agree that they will most likely not reinstate you. At that point, you would be eligible for unemployment benefits.

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