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Age discrimination and the workplace

Age discrimination can take many forms. A company may not hire workers over a certain age, or may not allow older workers into job-training programs. A supervisor may make repeated references to an employee's age with comments such as, "Isn't it time to retire?"

Employees affected by age discrimination in the workplace may have legal options.

What is age discrimination?

Age discrimination is discrimination based on a person's age if they are over 40. Age discrimination is illegal under both the Federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and Florida's Civil Rights Act.

Many employer actions may be viewed as age discrimination under ADEA and Florida law. Examples include:

  • A pattern of firing older workers
  • A pattern of denying promotions to older workers
  • A pattern of not hiring older workers
  • Harassing older workers
  • Retaliating against a worker for claiming age discrimination or supporting another's claim

Sometimes employers make work so unpleasant for older workers, the worker feels they need to quit for their own mental health. However, before you take any actions you might regret later, seek advice from an experienced employment law attorney. You may have legal options to stop the harassment and recover financial compensation.

Not all actions that appear discriminatory qualify as age discrimination under the law. In addition, the law does not apply to all employers. For example, the ADEA applies only to employers with 20 or more employees. Florida law applies to employers with 15 or more employees.

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