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§ 962. Construction and exclusiveness of remedy

Purdon's Pennsylvania Statutes and Consolidated StatutesTitle 43 P.S. Labor

Purdon's Pennsylvania Statutes and Consolidated Statutes
Title 43 P.S. Labor (Refs & Annos)
Chapter 17. Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (Refs & Annos)
43 P.S. § 962
§ 962. Construction and exclusiveness of remedy
(a) The provisions of this act shall be construed liberally for the accomplishment of the purposes thereof, and any law inconsistent with any provisions hereof shall not apply.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (c), nothing contained in this act shall be deemed to repeal or supersede any of the provisions of any existing or hereafter adopted municipal ordinance, municipal charter or of any law of this Commonwealth relating to discrimination because of race, color, familial status, religious creed, ancestry, age, sex, national origin or handicap or disability, but as to acts declared unlawful by section five of this act the procedure herein provided shall, when invoked, be exclusive and the final determination therein shall exclude any other action, civil or criminal, based on the same grievance of the complainant concerned. If the complainant institutes any action based on such grievance without resorting to the procedure provided in this act, such complainant may not subsequently resort to the procedure herein. In the event of a conflict between the interpretation of a provision of this act and the interpretation of a similar provision contained in any municipal ordinance, the interpretation of the provision in this act shall apply to such municipal ordinance.
(c)(1) In cases involving a claim of discrimination, if a complainant invokes the procedures set forth in this act, that individual's right of action in the courts of the Commonwealth shall not be foreclosed. If within one (1) year after the filing of a complaint with the Commission, the Commission dismisses the complaint or has not entered into a conciliation agreement to which the complainant is a party, the Commission must so notify the complainant. On receipt of such a notice the complainant shall be able to bring an action in the courts of common pleas of the Commonwealth based on the right to freedom from discrimination granted by this act.
(2) An action under this subsection shall be filed within two years after the date of notice from the Commission closing the complaint. Any complaint so filed shall be served on the Commission at the time the complaint is filed in court. The Commission shall notify the complainant of this requirement.
(3) If the court finds that the respondent has engaged in or is engaging in an unlawful discriminatory practice charged in the complaint, the court shall enjoin the respondent from engaging in such unlawful discriminatory practice and order affirmative action which may include, but is not limited to, reinstatement or hiring of employes, granting of back pay, or any other legal or equitable relief as the court deems appropriate. Back pay liability shall not accrue from a date more than three years prior to the filing of a complaint charging violations of this act.
(4) The court shall serve upon the Commission any final order issued in any action brought under this subsection.
(c.1) Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (c) or any other provision of this act, nothing in this act shall be deemed to authorize imposition by the Commission of remedial quota relief in cases involving hiring or promoting of employes of the Commonwealth, its agencies or instrumentalities or employes of local governments and school districts in this Commonwealth. This subsection shall not, however, prohibit the voluntary adoption of an affirmative action plan designed to assure that all persons are accorded equality of opportunity in employment.
(c.2) If, after a trial held pursuant to subsection (c), the court of common pleas finds that a defendant engaged in or is engaging in any unlawful discriminatory practice as defined in this act, the court may award attorney fees and costs to the prevailing plaintiff.
(c.3) If, after a trial held pursuant to subsection (c), the court of common pleas finds that a defendant has not engaged in or is not engaging in any unlawful discriminatory practice as defined in this act, the court may award attorney fees and costs to the prevailing defendant if the defendant proves that the complaint was brought in bad faith.
(d) Nothing in this act shall be construed to require any employer to hire any person with a job-related handicap or disability.
(e) The time limits for filing under any complaint or other pleading under this act shall be subject to waiver, estoppel and equitable tolling.
(f) Nothing in this act shall be constructed as superseding any provision of the act of October 15, 1980 (P.L. 950, No. 164), known as the “Commonwealth Attorneys Act.”1 All court actions commenced by or against the Commission shall be subject to the provisions of that act.

Credits

1955, Oct. 27, P.L. 744, § 12. Amended 1961, Feb. 28, P.L. 47, No. 19, § 3; 1969, July 9, P.L. 133, No. 56, § 5; 1974, Dec. 19, P.L. 966, No. 318, § 6, imd. effective; 1986, Dec. 16, P.L. 1626, No. 186, § 11, imd. effective; 1991, Dec. 20, P.L. 414, No. 51, § 10, imd. effective.

Footnotes

71 P.S. § 732-101 et seq.
43 P.S. § 962, PA ST 43 P.S. § 962
Current through 2022 Regular Session Act 117. Some statute sections may be more current, see credits for details.
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