Austin Age Discrimination Lawyers
In order to ensure employee rights, individuals over the age of 40 are protected from age discrimination under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). Workplace discrimination based on age occurs when an individual is treated less favorably because of his or her age. Since the retirement age is continually rising, protection against age-based discrimination has become particularly crucial.
Though workplace discrimination is unfortunate, there is help available to victims. The attorneys at The Melton Law Firm have successfully represented many Austin employees that have been victimized by unfair workplace discrimination, and we are prepared to evaluate your age discrimination case. Individuals who believe that they have been affected by age discrimination should seek legal representation to discuss their options.
When Age Discrimination May Have Occurred
During the course of a person’s employment, age-based discrimination could occur at many different junctures, including:
- Hiring – Under laws enforced by the EEOC, employers may not discriminate against applicants based on their age. In past cases that have been ruled in favor of people seeing protection under the ADEA, employers have been found in violation of federal law by overlooking candidates over the age of 40 who were well-suited for the job in question. Employers are not permitted to reject qualified applicants on the basis of age.
- Determining Pay – Employers are not permitted to pay a candidate over the age of 40 less than their younger counterparts when employees have the same comparable experience. Seniority, experience, and job qualification can determine a worker’s pay, but employers cannot determine pay based on age.
- Job Assignments – Workers over the age of 40 may not be dismissed or rejected from job assignments based on age. Qualification for the job must take precedence in determining job assignment.
- Promotions – Employers may not pass over candidates over the age of 40 who are arguably the most qualified candidate for a promotion position in favor of a younger employee based on the candidates’ ages. When promoting employees, an employer must consider only skills, seniority, and experience, without the constraint of age considerations.
- Firing – It is illegal to fire a worker over 40 years old because of their age. Even as an employee approaches retirement, firing preemptively is an act of discrimination in violation of EEOC and ADEA laws. Employers are also not permitted to fire or threaten to fire an employee for filing a discrimination claim on the basis of age.
- Daily Tasks – Harassment based on age discrimination for workers over age 40 is also illegal. Employers and employees can be found guilty of the serious charge of workplace harassment by teasing, pestering, intimidating, or making otherwise harmful remarks concerning a coworker’s age.
These workplace behaviors can be detrimental to an individual’s livelihood. They can also cause individuals to feel emotionally exhausted and distressed. Unfortunately, many people suspect but do not know with certainty, that they have been discriminated against on the basis of their age.
Workers sometimes see their less qualified, younger counterparts receiving promotions, or are themselves denied pay raises in favor of younger coworkers. Unfortunately, many workers over 40 are even harassed in their workplace because of their age. It is also considered discriminatory for an employer to ask an applicant to a job how old they are or how many years an applicant has before they are forced to retire. It is also a violation of the ADEA for an employer to deny an older employee benefits that they would allow a younger employee. In some cases, age can be a determining factor for limiting employee benefits, as long as the allotted benefits for older employees are not inferior to those of younger employees.
Under ADEA and EEOC laws, employers are not permitted to deny individuals a raise in pay, promoted title, or a job, fire them, or in any other way discriminate against individuals ages 40 and because of their age.
An individual’s age should not become a detriment to their employment status or opportunities; lawyers at The Melton Law Firm are dedicated to preserving the rights of Austin workers. Knowledgeable legal representation can help you determine your options for legal recourse if age discrimination has, indeed, occurred.
Do I need an attorney?
Each potential situation for age-based discrimination is legally tricky because the cases often rest on an employer’s failure to take a certain action, such as rejecting an applicant or refusing to promote an employee. An attorney is forced to build a case built on situations that did not occur, which can be difficult to prove legally.
A qualified attorney has access to the resources needed to investigate discriminatory practices, knows the process for filing complaints, and has the experience to recognize what a typical age-based discrimination case looks like. Individuals who try to stand up to their employer’s discrimination alone may be rightfully intimidated by their inability to provide proof, but an attorney will be able to put together a compelling case in favor of the employee.
Why choose The Melton Law Firm?
John F. Melton is one of the most gifted and awarded attorneys throughout the city as well as the state. To top off a long list of accolades, Melton recently was named Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, which can only be said for the top 1 percent of Texas attorneys.
For years, Melton Law Firm has been applying talent for winning personal injury and discrimination cases with a compassionate and diligent work ethic. Melton has a reputation in the state for bringing justice to employees facing discrimination in their workplaces, one of the more difficult civil actions to be skilled as an attorney.
Our law firm uses an aggressive approach to solve employment discrimination cases, and has for years brought our clients thousands of dollars in compensation for their lost wages. We believe older folks have just as much to offer in the workplace as anyone else and exceed the younger population in wisdom. Melton Law Firm works to ensure that your rights are respected in your workplace, regardless of age.
What should I do if I am being discriminated against in my workplace?
If you think your employer or coworkers may be treating you unfairly because of your age, you should begin to record the instances of discrimination. You can do this by filing a formal complaint with the Human Resources department at your workplace.
Filing complaints will create an important trail of legal documentation should you pursue civil action. It may also begin to help create a less hostile environment if your employer is retrained or reprimanded by Human Resources.
If this does not lessen the severity of the discriminatory practices, our lawyers advise that you seek your direct supervisor’s superior, in order to lodge another complaint. Should your employer maintain unfair procedures, it is best that you consider speaking with an attorney about your next legal options. Keep in mind that while the ADEA and EEOC prevent older workers from age-based discrimination, older employees are not protected from practices like lay-offs.
Contact an Austin Age Discrimination Lawyer Today
If you have been affected by age discrimination, the Austin lawyers at The Melton Law Firm can help hold the responsible parties accountable. Our lawyers understand how detrimental age discrimination can be to a worker’s lifestyle, and we are committed to helping the victims of workplace discrimination fight for justice. To speak to one of our lawyers today, please call (512) 330-0017.