New York City Age Discrimination Lawyers

Age discrimination is illegal in the workplace. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”) protects workers who are 40 years old or older from their employer discriminating against them because of their age. The law covers every aspect of the employment relationship. It is illegal to discriminate against an employee because of their age when hiring, firing, selecting for layoff, promoting and training or in any other way concerning their employment. If you suffer discrimination in your employment because of your age, under federal, New York State, and New York City law, you can sue your company.

Age Discrimination and Harassment

Thoughtless teasing about the age of an employee may not be unlawful. And just making a remark about an employee’s age may not be unlawful. But if the teasing or the unkind comments become persistent, it can create an unlawfully hostile working environment. And if the teasing or thoughtless comments about age leads to an adverse employment decision like termination or demotion, the law is broken. The harasser may be a supervisor, a coworker or even a customer or client in the workplace.
The ADEA protects workers if the business has at least 20 employees. If you work for state or local government, you are covered no matter how few workers are employed by your agency. The law prohibits discrimination by unions with 25 or more members or which operates a hiring hall.

New York State Law Prohibits Age Discrimination

If you are 18 years old or older, New York State law prohibits discrimination against you because of your age. It is unlawful under New York law for an employer to refuse to hire or terminate such a person or to discriminate against them when making promotions, or deciding what wage or salary to pay them, or establishing terms, conditions, or privileges of employment because of that person’s age.

Older Workers Benefit Protection Act

Many businesses want to have employees waive their rights to sue when they are being fired or laid off. Employees 40 years of age or older have protections because of the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act (“OWBPA”). You must have 21 days to decide whether to accept a severance package that also asks you to waive your right to sue for age discrimination and seven days to change your mind and withdraw your acceptance of the offer. Even though you signed a severance agreement waiving your rights you may still have the right to revoke your acceptance. If the severance agreement did not explain your statutory right to 21 days to review and seven days to change your mind, your release of all claims may not have released the employer from an age discrimination claim.

Discuss Age Discrimination with an Attorney in New York City

If you are suffering age discrimination or if you are being asked to sign a release as part of a severance package, you should consult an attorney from Cary Kane to discuss how we can help protect your rights. Call 212.868.6300 or email the firm to schedule a free consultation.


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