Do I have any legal recourse?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Do I have any legal recourse?

I use my employer’s employee fitness center during my unpaid lunch period. I was suspended without pay for being at the fitness center for 31 minutes, exceeding my 30 minute lunch period. The company said that my actions constituted ‘Theft of Time.’ My company permits smokers, however, to take an average 10 minute break anytime during the day that their addiction requires and nothing is ever said. I would like the company to allow me 6 or 7 paid breaks throughout the course of the day without having to take up smoking. Do I have any legal recourse against my employer?

Asked on June 12, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The fact is that absent some form of legally actionable discrimination (and your case does not qualify), an employer need not treat all workers the same or even fairly. The only exception being if such treatment violates the terms of a union agreement or employment contract. The fact is that a company can set the conditions of employment much as it sees fit.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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