Age Discrimination Lawyer
Federal Law and State laws make it unlawful for employers to discriminate against older persons on the basis of age. Your employer may not discriminate against older persons in any aspect of their employment, including but not limited to hiring, pay, benefits, workplace opportunities, performance reviews, physical or verbal treatment, assignments, and firing.
Unfortunately, despite age discrimination laws making discriminatory practices illegal, it is not uncommon in the workplace. According to recent studies, approximately 1 in 5 workers over the age of 40 report having personally experienced age-related discrimination. If you believe you are experiencing age discrimination, you are not alone.
Read below to learn more about your civil rights and about what steps to take to prove your case.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) both prohibit employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of their age. The ADEA and the FEHA protect employees who are 40 years of age or older. Age discriminating can impact employees and job applicants. Age may not impact ones status in the workplace, or impact employment practices including hiring, pay, benefits, workplace opportunities, performance reviews, physical or verbal treatment, assignments, layoffs, and termination.
Discrimination based on age is illegal, whether it is intentional or not. For example, it is illegal for employers to fire higher paid employees as a way to save money if the practice targets older workers, even if the practice is not explicitly about age.
The Federal Government’s Older Workers Benefit Protection Act further prohibits employers from using an employee’s age as the basis for discrimination in retirement benefits, makes it illegal for employers to target older workers in staff-cutting programs, and prevents employers from requiring older workers to waive their rights to sue.
Unfounded stereotypes about older workers can drive age discrimination. Ageist stereotypes include ideas that older employees don’t understand technology as well as younger workers, are resistant to change, are complacent, are difficult to manage, and are too highly compensated.
Harassment, including the use of ageist stereotypes, jokes, and offensive comments regarding age, is also illegal in the workplace if the harassment is considered severe or pervasive so as to rise to the level of creating a hostile work environment.
If you work remotely, the legal standard for proving age discrimination remains the same. Although you have less face-to-face interaction with coworkers, you may experience age discrimination in a remote office space.
The law protects employees who report unlawful discrimination at work. If you make a complaint of discrimination or harassment to your employer or human resources representative, resist discrimination or harassment in the workplace, or participate as a witness in a discrimination or harassment complaint made by a co-worker, your employer may not treat you unfavorable as a result. If your employer has treated you differently because you reported or resisting any form of discrimination or harassment, your employer has retaliated against you and broken the law.
If you are Experiencing Discrimination or Retaliation at Work
If you believe you may have age discrimination claims, you may be entitled to compensation including back pay, emotional distress damages, and punitive damages, under federal and state laws. Take the following steps to support your case:
Save Evidence: Record all relevant events or interactions in writing. Save related emails, notes, and documents.
Report the Discrimination: Report the discrimination directly to your employer. If your employer does not correct their behavior, you may file a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) (if your employer has more than 15 employees) or with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) (if your employer has more than 5 employees). There is a 300-day deadline to file with the EEOC and a 3-year deadline to file with the DFEH.
Find an Attorney: Reach out to an employment attorney.
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Avloni Law is a law firm dedicated to fighting for your right to a workplace free of unlawful discrimination and harassment. Navruz Avloni is an experienced discrimination attorney and has successfully represented numerous clients in discrimination cases.Contact Us