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Responding to a workplace age discrimination claim

On Behalf of | Sep 18, 2023 | Employment Law For Employers

Employers are aware that there are several types of discrimination in the workplace. One common form is age discrimination, where an individual or a group of employees are treated unfairly based on their age.

It can happen in many employment decisions, like hiring, firing, training, promotions or layoffs.

Common examples

There are several common examples of age discrimination. Employers may choose to hire younger candidates over older ones. This could be because the employer wants to pay a younger employee less, provide fewer benefits or because they believe a younger employee may have more technological skills.

Older employees with years of experience may not be chosen for promotion or advancement opportunities if the employer assumes they will retire soon, for example. Employers may also discriminate against older employees when they allow derogatory comments in the workplace about the employee’s age.

Responding to an age discrimination claim

If an employee files an age discrimination claim, either within the company or to a regulatory agency, it is important for the employer to know how to respond.

The employer should have documentation to support that an adverse employment action was based on a reason unrelated to the employee’s age, like performance issues or a violation of company standards. It’s helpful to keep copies of the employee’s performance reviews or any performance improvement plans that were implemented.

Also, if an employer was aware of discriminatory conduct and can demonstrate that they took immediate steps to address it, that can be helpful to show that they do not tolerate that behavior in the workplace.

If an employer needs help to address an age discrimination claim, there is assistance available.