Los Angeles Age Discrimination Lawyer (ADEA)
As we move into the second quarter of the 21st century, many Millenials are over 40, which means they are under the ADEA’s protection. So, more workers are in this protected class today than at any other time in history. At the same time, some recent federal court decisions have made these claims more complex than ever before as well. Judges usually require additional evidence in ADEA claims which other employment law plaintiffs need not provide.
The dedicated Los Angeles Age Discrimination in Employment Act lawyers at the Obagi Law Group quickly evaluate your age discrimination claim and hit the ground running. We often uncover evidence which another agency, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, might have overlooked. Then, we usually leverage this proof and obtain a favorable out-of-court settlement. Such resolutions speed relief to injured parties and also give them more control over the case’s outcome.
Your Rights Under the ADEA
The 1964 Civil Rights Act contained an age discrimination prohibition which was more of a statement of principle. Three years later, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act fleshed out this provision and added some new ones. Some examples include prohibitions against:
- Age Preference: A requirement like “college graduate” does not express an age preference, because people graduate from college at different ages. Requirements like “digital native,” however, clearly express an age preference for workers under 40.
- Benefit Denials: As employees age, health insurance, life insurance, and other insurance premiums usually increase. In most cases, employers must absorb these increased costs. They must provide the same benefits to all employees, regardless of age.
- Mandatory Retirement: In the thrilling days of yesteryear, many employers had written policies which required workers over 65 to retire. Such formal policies are gone, but informal ones remain. Employers often “encourage” older workers to retire by reassigning them or subtly changing their job descriptions.
The remedies under this law, which applies to any company with more than twenty regular employees, include compensatory damages for items such as lost wages and job search expenses. Additional punitive damages are available as well, if there is clear and convincing evidence of intentional discrimination. Note that there’s a difference between “intentional” and “malicious.” The law only requires the lesser degree of proof.
Your Claim for Damages
Generally, discrimination vicitms must initially bring their claims to the EEOC. However, this small, underfunded federal agency often refuses to take on complex discrimination cases. That’s especially true in this area, since as mentioned, these cases require additional evidence.
Therefore, an EEOC denial does not mean your claim is weak or meritless. It simply means you need a more dedicated legal advocate.
Once we take over, we firmly establish a prima facie discrimination claim. This showing puts the employer back on its heels, forcing it to provide a nondiscriminatory reason for the disparate treatment.
Incidentally, there are two basic types of employment discrimination. Disparate treatment is treating different people differently. Disparate impact is a policy which disproportionately impacts a protected group of workers. A mandatory Saturday or Sunday work requirement is a good example. Such a requirement often involves religious discrimination.
Because we establish such a strong foundation, and because valid claims are rather difficult to defend, many employers raise the white flag and quickly agree to a settlement which strongly favors the discrimination victim.
Reach Out to a Tough-Minded Los Angeles County Employment Attorney
The law guarantees equal opportunity for everyone. For a confidential consultation with an experienced Los Angeles age discrimination (ADEA) lawyer, contact the Obagi Law Group. P.C. We routinely handle matters throughout SoCal.