AGE DISCRIMINATION IN THE CALIFORNIA WORKPLACE
Age discrimination can be manifested in various ways, involving treating either a job applicant or employee unfavorably because of his or her age. The federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) protects workers age 40 or older from age discrimination.
It is illegal to discriminate based on age in anything relating to employment: hiring, firing, pay, job assignment, promotion, layoff, training, benefits, or anything else pertaining to treatment of employees in the workplace.
It is unlawful to harass a person because of his or her age. In some companies, older workers are treated in such a way as to create a hostile work environment, sometimes with the deliberate intention of pushing the older worker out to make room for a younger one.
DISCRIMINATORY EMPLOYMENT POLICIES
A company might set a policy which, although it applies to everyone in the company, has a negative effect only on older workers over 40. If a policy of this type is not based on a reasonable factor other than age, it may be considered discriminatory.
Some employment policies that may be discriminatory include
- Making jokes or derogatory statements about older people
- Refusing to hire a qualified individual because of age
- Excluding older workers from training opportunities
- Making work unpleasant or excessively difficult with the intention of pushing an older person to resign
- Paying less for tasks assigned to older workers
- Layoffs that affect older employees more than younger ones
To save money, companies frequently prefer to use newer and younger employees because their pay rate is lower than that of older workers who have earned salary increases over the years. In California, the law does not allow layoffs based only on salary.
STATE AND FEDERAL LAWS AND AGENCIES
A sometimes confusing array of state and federal laws and agencies exist to protect the rights of older workers. It is a good idea to consult a California labor attorney if you feel that you have been the subject of age discrimination. Whether you are seeking reinstatement, monetary compensation for damages related to the illegal discrimination, or some other appropriate remedy, a knowledgeable and experienced employment lawyer can coach you in how to go through the complaint process that the company has in place and can help take the confusion out of navigating a complex protective system. Based on the circumstances, the lawyer will determine which law and which agency is best suited to process your discrimination claim.
SAN DIEGO DISCRIMINATION EMPLOYMENT LAWYERS | ZHE LAW, LLP
The lawyers at the San Diego employment law firm of Zeldes Haeggquist & Eck, LLP have the experience and record of success you need if you’ve suffered from age discrimination on the job. We are committed to equal justice for workers of all ages and will handle your discrimination case with professionalism and sensitivity. We believe in the human dignity of every employee and will fight for fairness on your behalf.
Call or contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation.