What is the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)?

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) is a federal law that prohibits employers from discriminating against individuals aged 40 and over. The Elderly Worker Benefits Protection Act (Pub. L. 95-256) was enacted to amend the ADEA and provide additional protections for older workers.

The ADEA was created to protect the rights of older workers in the United States. It was designed to ensure that employers do not discriminate against individuals based on their age, and to promote the employment of older persons based on their capacity and not on their age. The ADEA prohibits employers from refusing to hire, firing, or otherwise discriminating against individuals due to their age. It also prohibits employers from limiting, segregating, or classifying employees in any way that may deprive them of employment opportunities or adversely affect their status as an employee due to their age.

The ADEA also requires employers to conduct research and promote research with a view to reducing barriers to employment for older people and promoting measures to use their skills. It also requires employers to publish and make available to employers, professional societies, various media, and other interested persons the conclusions of studies and other materials for the promotion of employment. Additionally, it requires employers to promote, through the system of public employment services and through cooperative effort, the development of public and private agency facilities for expanding the opportunities and potential of older people. The ADEA also prohibits employers from printing or publishing any notice or advertisement related to their employment or membership or any employment classification or recommendation of a labor organization that states any preference, limitation, specification, or discrimination on the basis of age. However, it does not prohibit employers from taking action that is otherwise prohibited under the ADEA when age is a genuine occupational qualification reasonably necessary for the normal functioning of the particular company, or when the differentiation is based on reasonable factors other than age. Finally, the ADEA allows employers to observe the terms of a genuine seniority system that is not intended to evade the purposes of this chapter, except that no such seniority system will require or allow involuntary retirement of any person specified under section 631 (a) of this title because of that person's age; or observe the terms of a bona fide employee benefit plan when, for each benefit or benefit package, the actual amount of payment made or cost incurred on behalf of an older worker is not less than that made or incurred on behalf of a younger worker.

Cornelius Maxon
Cornelius Maxon

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