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Types of age discrimination in the workplace

On Behalf of | Nov 13, 2017 | Employment Litigation

Florida residents and business owners alike need to understand the various laws and ways to ensure that a workplace appropriately treats every worker fairly. While it may be commonly known that sexual harassment or discrimination based upon a person’s sexual orientation or religious belief is illegal, some people may not know about the laws that protect older workers against discrimination based solely on their age.

As explained by the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act bans discrimination at work for people over the age of 39. While an employer cannot show favoritism for an employee under 40 versus an employee 40 or older yet they may favor employees over 39. Similarly, while there are protections against discrimination for workers in their 40s and older, there are no such federal protections for workers under 40.

Per AARP, the U.S. Supreme Court made a ruling that did make it harder for people to prove discrimination based on age but that has not changed the nature of the law that governs this area. Being hired for a job appears to be the most common issue that older workers say they run into. However, that is far from the only type of age discrimination.

Discrimination may impact a decision to fire, lay off or not promote an older worker. Compensation decisions may also be involved in cases of alleged discrimination based upon an employee’s age. Such discrimination do not have to be perpretrated only by managers but may happen based upon actions of colleagues and others.