Age Discrimination at Corporations

Given that most age discrimination laws are applicable to companies and corporations based on their number of employees, corporations are nearly always bound by laws like The age discrimination act of 1967 (ADEA) and the age discrimination act of 1975 . However, the courts have recently begun favoring employers to such a marked extent, corporations will probably be far less likely to lose age discrimination cases in the future. The 2008 Supreme Court case that appears to have changed everything is named Gross v. Financial Services FBL, Inc.

Age Discrimination Claims Against Corporations

Now, the Gross case has so changed the applicable standards that employees will now have to bear the full burden of proof and show that age was the deciding factor that caused the employer to make its decision. Since employees are rarely privy to the private conversations and meetings of their superiors, this standard is arguably going to make it much more difficult for age discrimination claimants to prevail in the future.

As is arguably the case in lawsuits favoring big business, it was a five-four decision. Justice John Paul Stevens angrily declared in his dissent, supported by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsberg, David H. Souter and Stephen G. Breyer, that this decision showed “an utter disregard of our precedent and Congress’s intent.”

Process for Presenting and Refuting Age Discrimination Claims

Prior to Gross, there was a basic two-step approach to deciding age discrimination cases. First, the complaining worker simply had to prove that age was one of the deciding factors in the employer’s lay-off, demotion or other negative employment act. Then, it was the employer’s duty to prove that it had a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason, unrelated to age, for making its decision.

Special Suggestions for Corporate Human Resource Professionals

Given the added difficulty of administering all employee benefit programs and training supervisory and other staff about discrimination in large corporations, human resource professionals are urged to bring in Equal Employment Opportunity Commission professionals to present free seminars. Called “No Cost Outreach Programs,” many corporations find these presentations to be very helpful in acquainting their employees with ways to make sure they are not basing any employment decisions on discriminatory grounds such as age.

Corporate human resource professionals should make sure they regularly update their employee manuals to fully explain any new changes in the law regarding all forms of workplace discrimination.

Publications for All Employers on Age and Other Discrimination Grounds

Corporate employers and all others are encouraged to print out copies of various EEOC publications that directly address many age (and other) discrimination issues. (See: Publications).

Fighting an Age Discrimination Claim

With the recent changes favoring Corprations in age discrimination lawsuit battles, it would be best to review your case with a lawyer first to determine if the case is strong enough to be won in the court of law. Submit your case details for a Free Case Review to an experienced Age Discrimination Lawyer in your area.