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Age Discrimination and Wrongful Termination

Posted on in Employment

San Jose age discrimination lawyers, age discrimination, wrongful terminationAccording to an article in the LA Times, a California community is outraged that a beloved garbageman, who served his community for the past 32 years, has been fired. The 58-year-old garbageman is reportedly loved by his community for his extraordinary work ethic and many good deeds. Stories have circulated about the man dragging residents’ trashcans to the curb for them when they forgot, as well as children who have dressed up as the man for Halloween or requested that their birthday cake be decorated with a trash can in his honor. In fact, after the garbageman was fired, more than 500 people wrote letters asking the refuse collection company to take him back.

Eventually, the refuse collection company caved into the community’s pressure and rehired the garbageman. However, the man was fired again when a human resources employee for the company claimed that the garbageman failed to prove that he was legally authorized to work in the U.S.

The refuse collection company claims that the garbageman was initially fired for poor work performance (they allege that the former employee had four accidents over a 12-month period). The garbageman, on the other hand, claims that in actuality he was fired due to his age and has therefore filed a wrongful termination lawsuit claiming age discrimination.

Age Discrimination Laws Applicable in California

Under both federal and California law, it is illegal for an employer to make employment decisions based on an employee’s age if that employee is 40-years-old and older. The federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (29 USC chapter 14) specifically prohibits employers with at least 20 employees from discriminating against applicants and employees who are 40 years of age and older when making employment decisions related to hiring, promotion, compensation, discharge, etc.

Additionally, California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (CA Code §§12900 - 12996) applies to smaller employers (those with five or more full-time or part-time employees) and similarly protects employees who are 40 years old and older from age discrimination in connection with their employment.

Remedies Available in Age Discrimination Lawsuits

Employers who violate federal or state age discrimination laws are liable to face a wide variety of remedies. Remedies that may be available under the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act include:

  • Furnishing the wronged employee with wages, benefits, and other types of compensation that the employee lost out on as a result of the discrimination;
  • Paying a liquidated damages penalty to the wronged employee;
  • Taking steps to remedy the effects of the discrimination; and
  • Paying the wronged employee’s attorney’s fees.

Furthermore, remedies frequently available under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act include:

  • Hiring or reinstating the wronged employee;
  • Awarding the wronged employee compensation for his or her lost wages, emotional distress, etc.; and
  • Fining the offending employer administrative fines up to $150,000.

Contact Us for Professional Assistance

At Jachimowicz Law Group, our experienced San Jose age discrimination lawyers represent both employers and employees in age discrimination lawsuits throughout Silicon Valley, the Bay Area, and all of Northern California. Reach out to us today for help. Call 408-246-5500.








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