Nassau County Age Discrimination
The county seat of Nassau County is in the Village of Garden City. The largest age group in Nassau County is probably the group that is 45-49 years old, which numbers more than 50,000 people. Age discrimination happens if an employer makes an adverse employment decision due to your age. Employers should be making their decisions based on your work performance, rather than assumptions based on age. There are differences between federal and state laws that may be pertinent to an age discrimination case. At Phillips & Associates, our Nassau County age discrimination lawyers may be able to represent you in a lawsuit for damages.Understanding When Age Discrimination Happens
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) is a federal law that prohibits employers that are covered from discriminating on the basis of age against workers who are at least 40. You are not protected under this law if you are under age 40, or if your employer is not covered by the ADEA. The ADEA applies to employers with at least 20 employees. Under the ADEA, discrimination can occur even if both you and the discriminating person in the workplace are over 40.
Similarly, if your company is doing poorly and conducting layoffs, but somehow all of the workers over age 50 are the ones being laid off, while much younger employees stay on, this may be age discrimination. Often, a telltale sign is that you will be asked to sign a severance agreement. A severance agreement is a contract between an employer and employee that specifies the terms under which termination or a layoff is occurring. The agreement may be titled a "release and covenant not to sue." The severance agreement is supposed to be supported by an exchange of something in value, which is called consideration, in order to be enforceable. Our age discrimination attorneys can advise Nassau County employees on whether a severance agreement is fair and reasonable.Severance Agreements
Employers that are trying to lay off older workers need to comply with the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act (OWBPA), which amended the ADEA in order to provide protection for the benefits of older workers. Among other things, the OWBPA requires employers to comply with certain requirements when asking older employees to sign a waiver and release from age discrimination claims. Often, these are presented in connection with a severance agreement.
Under the OWBPA, a waiver from your employer as to age discrimination claims must meet seven requirements. First, the waiver needs to be drafted in a clear way. Second, it must explicitly talk about your rights or claims under the ADEA. Third, it needs to advise you in writing to ask an attorney before accepting the severance. Fourth, you are supposed to be given 21 days to consider an offer of severance or consideration for the waiver. Fifth, you must be given seven days to revoke your signature. Sixth, your waiver cannot include any rights or claims that could be created after the date of execution. Seventh, the waiver should be accompanied by consideration in addition to what you are already entitled to receive in terms of pay, sick days, and benefits.State Law Claims
If you work for an employer with at least four employees, moreover, our Nassau County age discrimination attorneys may be able to help you file a claim under the New York State Human Rights Law. The Human Rights Law prohibits age discrimination against people who are at least 18. For example, if you are 50 years old and have been working in a particular position with good performance reviews and promotions for years, you might apply for a better position within the company. If somebody who is 23 with one year of experience gets that job, and comments are made that suggest that age was a factor in deciding to hire that person, your employer's action would likely be considered illegal age discrimination. There is an exception for jobs for which age is a bona fide occupational qualification that is reasonably necessary to the normal operation of a specific business.Consult an Age Discrimination Lawyer in Nassau County
At Phillips & Associates, our experienced attorneys can evaluate your situation to determine whether you have a basis to sue for age discrimination, or another form of discrimination, such as race or sex discrimination. Call us at (516) 365-3731 or reach out to us online for a free appointment. We work on a contingency fee basis and do not receive any fees unless we recover compensation for you through a settlement or judgment.
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