Can an employer, after 10 years as an exempt employee, change status to non-exempt and require you to work more hours?

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Can an employer, after 10 years as an exempt employee, change status to non-exempt and require you to work more hours?

I have been working from 9-5 for almost 10 years now. I was recently change to non-exempt and noew I am being asked to work more hours. I took this job because I could work 9-5.

Asked on May 13, 2009 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

In Pennsylvania, as in most states, employment is "at will" unless you have a contract.  This means that you can be fired for any reason that is not illegal (race or age discrimination are examples of illegal reasons for firing).  So, for any reason that isn't one that would be an illegal reason to fire you, the company can change your conditions of employment in a way that is short of firing you, as well.

There is a limited exception to this, where an employee handbook is worded in a way that allows an employee to rely on it as if it were a contract.  If you have an employee handbook, or something of that sort, that you think might help you, (or if there is some other reason you think your case might be out of the ordinary), you should take it to a Pennsylvania attorney who practices labor and employment law, because this is a very difficult and technical argument that rarely succeeds.  One place you can look for a qualified lawyer is our website, http://attorneypages.com


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