Decades of Pennsylvania law concerning eligibility for unemployment compensation after accepting an early retirement package have been overturned in the recent landmark Pennsylvania Supreme Court case of Diehl v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 57 A.3d 1209.

In Diehl, the plaintiff, a 63-year-old man with 23 years’ seniority with his employer, was given a memorandum from his employer that included a list of 20 employees who would be laid off pursuant to a reduction in force. The plaintiff was not on the list. The employer also offered employees over the age of 60 an early retirement program, for which the plaintiff was eligible. He accepted the early retirement program and effectively quit his position with the employer as a result; he subsequently applied for unemployment compensation benefits.

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