Employees who are 40 years of age or older are protected from employment discrimination based on age. Under Federal, New York State and the New York City Human Rights laws, it is unlawful to discriminate against a person because of his/her age with respect to any term, condition or privilege of employment, including hiring, firing, promotion, layoff, compensation, benefits, job assignments and training.
Age discrimination can take some subtle forms, and employers are often clever about hiding their discriminatory practices. A few examples of possible age discrimination include, but are certainly not limited to, the following:
- The employer compensates younger employees with less skill and experience at a higher level than the older employees with more skill and experience.
- A company is having difficult times economically, so it fires or lays off the oldest workers first, because the oldest workers are making the highest salaries after having been with the company the longest.
- A boss gives an older employee undeserved poor performance evaluations and then uses these false records of poor performance to fire or demote the employee.
- An employer will not let an older worker take a training course or otherwise invest in the worker's further growth.
- A company refuses to hire anyone who looks older than a certain age, simply to maintain a youthful company image.
- Management turns down an older employee for promotion, instead hiring someone younger for the position.
- Older employees are disciplined for something younger employees conducted engaged in by younger employees without suffering any consequences.
- Younger employees are given the best assignments, projects or leads while the more menial, less demanding tasks are assigned to older workers.
- If the boss excludes older employees from key meetings or only socializes with the younger workers, this may be a sign that he/or she has a preference for a younger staff.
- The employer is removing older employees and replacing them with younger employees.
- The employer refers to bringing in “new energy,” “new blood” or “new faces,” which have been considered euphemisms indicating a preference for youth.
- Even if the supervisor who is engaging in the wrongful conduct is older, a viable claim of age discrimination may still exist.
If you believe that you are being discriminated against at work because of your age, you should be aware that laws exist to protect you from unlawful age discrimination. The attorneys at Schwartz & Perry LLP would be pleased to meet and discuss your concerns with you. There is no charge for the initial consultation. Please feel free to call us at (212) 889-6565 or contact us online.
Age Discrimination in Employment Act Violations
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) is a Federal law that protects certain employees who are over 40 years of age from employment discrimination based on age. The ADEA applies to most employers with 20 or more employees. Certain states and cities also have their own laws which prohibit age discrimination.
The New York State and New York City Human Rights Law
In New York, the New York State Human Rights Law and the New York City Human Rights Law prohibit discrimination on the basis of age.