Woman experiencing age discrimination at workAfter extensive time in the workforce, you have considerable skill and experience that should make you a valued employee or sought-after new hire. But rather than being an asset, suddenly, all your know-how and expertise seem to be working against you with your current employer or in your job search. Sound familiar?

If you are 40 or older, you may be a victim of workplace age discrimination. Have you been demoted, fired, targeted by your supervisors, passed over in favor of less qualified applicants, or treated unfairly by prospective employers or your present boss and coworkers? This type of discrimination isn't just harmful and hurtful—it's also illegal. Both California state and federal employment laws protect workers from age-based discrimination. You are also protected from any retaliation for reporting it.

At JCS Law Firm, our experienced and knowledgeable Los Angeles-based legal team can help you develop and pursue your case. We will be with you from the beginning of the reporting through the litigation processes, holding your employer accountable for unlawful conduct. We will recover fair compensation for your damages, losses, and emotional stress. 

Considering making a report or taking legal action? Here's what you should know about age discrimination cases in California.

Legal Protections 

Both the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and the Federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibit employers from discriminating against workers who are 40 years or older. The laws are intended to prevent employers from treating older workers unfairly at any stage of employment. Employers cannot advertise job openings with age preferences or requirements or ask applicants their age (or date of birth) during interviews. Of the two laws, the FEHA is generally the most relevant to California cases, as it provides greater protections than its federal counterpart.

Recognizing Age-Based Employment Discrimination Age discrimination isn't always straightforward or easy to recognize. Common examples of potentially illegal age-driven discrimination include:

  • Being demoted or let go for no apparent reason
  • Not being offered a job or being fired because an employer wants a younger (or younger-looking) staff
  • Company layoffs or employment decisions that only affect older employees or workers with seniority
  • Receiving an unfair negative performance evaluation
  • Forcing older employees into retirement
  • Being passed over for promotion in favor of a younger employee with less experience and fewer qualifications
  • Terminations that only affect employees with higher salaries
  • Persistent jokes, comments, and other types of harassment related to age that create a hostile work environment
  • Unexpected or unexplained salary reductions
  • Denial of medical leave and more