EASTON — The lawyer representing Andrew and Joseline Scheid in a federal sexual harassment lawsuit has withdrawn from the case.
Judge Edward Smith of the U.S. Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania granted Lancaster attorney Gary Efstration’s petition to remove himself from the case Friday at a hearing in Easton.
The Scheids were ordered to appear in court Friday but did not attend.
Efstration declined comment following the hearing.
Smith granted the Scheids 30 days from Friday to find an attorney or risk being found in default.
The civil lawsuit was filed by a New Jersey man accusing Joseline Scheid of sexual harassment while he worked at the Andrew T. Scheid Funeral Home’s Lancaster city facility at 121 S. Prince St. in 2017.
He is seeking $150,000 in damages plus attorney fees.
Separately, the Pennsylvania State Board of Funeral Directors indefinitely suspended Andrew Scheid’s funeral supervisor license as well as the licenses of his two facilities in Lancaster city and Manor Township on Feb. 14.
The board’s order followed a temporary suspension it imposed against Scheid and his two funeral homes on Jan. 16. That move followed the recovery of four “significantly decomposed” bodies and several cremated remains at Scheid’s Manor Township funeral home.
A separate complaint alleging 30 violations of state funeral law has yet to be decided by the state board. Scheid could face a revocation of his license in that case.
(Andrew T. Scheid Funeral Home is not affiliated with Melanie B. Scheid Funeral Directors and Cremation Services).