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Understanding age discrimination in the workplace

On Behalf of | Nov 21, 2022 | Employment Litigation

If you face unfair treatment at work because of your age, it might not be clear whether it qualifies as age discrimination. When your employer makes work-related decisions without considering your skills, qualifications, or performance, your unique situation could entitle you to legal remedies.

It can help to understand what constitutes age discrimination in New York and how to recognize examples of illegal practices.

Understanding age discrimination

Both federal and New York state laws protect you from unfair treatment in the workplace. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), covering workers over 40, makes it illegal for your employer to base decisions regarding your employment on age. In addition, New York state extends protections against this form of discrimination to workers of all ages.

Even with these legal protections in place, age discrimination in the workplace is increasingly common, but recognizing it can help you advocate for your rights.

Recognizing age discrimination

Age discrimination can include a variety of situations, incidents, and interactions. In addition to hiring and firing, any employment decision or harassment based solely on how old you are instead of how qualified you are may constitute discrimination, including:

  • Layoffs disproportionately affecting older employees
  • Promotions given to less-qualified younger colleagues
  • Better opportunities offered to younger staff members

Unfortunately, not all mistreatment is illegal, but knowing what protections you have can help you defend your rights.

Age discrimination in the workplace can impact your earning potential, career path, and emotional and mental well-being. Understand what constitutes illegal age discrimination to protect yourself from unfair treatment at work.