Penn's EAP offers legal and life help

Every day, Penn employees purchase new homes, navigate landlord and tenant issues, adopt children, and act as caretakers. Life can get complicated, but the University offers services that can help ease the burden of balancing work and home.

Penn’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides faculty, staff, and their immediate family members access to free, confidential, around-the-clock counseling and referral services for personal and professional life issues. EAP services are available by phone, online, and through face-to-face sessions.

“Penn cares about the health and wellness of its staff and faculty. Managing work and home life can be stressful, and can also be complex,” says Karen Kille, worklife specialist in the Division of Human Resources (HR.) “Personal stressors can also impact job performance. We want to help people stay in sync at home and at work.”

One aspect of the EAP that faculty and staff may not be aware of is its legal consultation services. Kille says employees can dial into the main EAP telephone line, where they will be referred to an attorney who will provide as many as 30 free minutes of consultation per call. The services offered are limited to 30 minutes per issue, for unlimited, non-job-related issues.

“If you have more than one issue going on in a year, you can call back and get an additional 30 minutes on that separate issue,” Kille says.

The EAP also offers a self-directed online information portal with material that has been vetted by professionals, so that Penn employees can be confident the information they are receiving is accurate.

Aside from its legal services, the EAP also offers management consultation, which helps ease issues and transitions within the work environment; critical incidence support, which provides in-person or over-the-phone counseling for personal or professional concerns; and in-person educational workshops. All services are confidential.

On Tuesday, Feb. 17, the EAP is offering a workshop titled “Legal Document Planning: Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning,” which will discuss legal issues to consider when planning for end of life. Advanced registration is required.

“[The EAP] is a resource for positive situations, just as much as the negative,” Kille says. “When good things are happening—getting married, buying a home, getting a promotion—this resource can be just as helpful.”

The direct telephone number for all EAP services is 888-321-4433.

For more information on the EAP and additional resources, visit the HR website.

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