If you think you are a victim of age discrimination in the workplace, there are specific steps you need to take to protect your rights.
Your first step is to report the discrimination to your employer.
What is age discrimination?
Age discrimination is discrimination based on your age if you are 40 or older. Many different kinds of actions could be discriminatory, including not hiring you, not promoting you, harassing you or firing you based on your age.
You company's human resources department can explain how to report age discrimination. The process should also be outlined in a written policy or handbook. Even if you feel that reporting discrimination will do no good, it's important to report the issue and to give your employer a chance to respond.
If reporting age discrimination does not solve the problem, or if it results in your employer retaliating against you for raising the issue, your next step is to file a discrimination claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). It's important to respond promptly. If you wait too long to file an age discrimination claim, your case may be harder to prove.
The EEOC may attempt to mediate your claim. It may also choose to file an age discrimination lawsuit. If the EEOC is not able to mediate your claim and chooses not to sue your employer, it will give you a Notice of Right to Sue. An employment lawyer can then file a discrimination lawsuit against your employer.
You can contact an attorney at any point in the process to advise you. The sooner you contact a lawyer, the better off you will be. An attorney can advise you if you have a good case and help you document your age discrimination claim.