LOST YOUR JOB BECAUSE YOU’RE ELIGIBLE FOR SOCIAL SECURITY? YOU MAY HAVE A CLAIM.
QUESTION: I was recently laid off from my job, where I’d been working for the last 10 years. I heard the reason I was laid off, and not someone else, is because I’m eligible for Social Security, and “don’t really need the job.” But I really do! Is there anything I can do?
ANSWER: Sounds like you‘ve been the victim of age discrimination – and that’s against the law. Using your possible eligibility for social security as a basis for a layoff decision is discrimination. What you might make, if you stopped working, should be irrelevant (and no more your employer’s business than how much your husband or wife earns).
Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), a law that applies to companies with at least 20 workers, employers may not discriminate against older workers in any aspects of employment, including hiring and job assignments, benefits, promotions, training, discipline, and termination. The ADEA applies to workers age 40 and older.
If there are fewer than 20 employees at the company, you may be able to file suit for age discrimination under Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act. If you are successful in a lawsuit, you may be able to recover money damages, get your job back (if you were discharged or unfairly laid off), and have your legal fees paid.
Unsure how to proceed? The lawyers at GWINN TAURIAINEN PLLC are experienced attorneys and are happy to answer your questions. Give us a call for a free initial telephone consultation about your legal needs. For consideration of your questions in our web column, please submit your inquiry on the “Contact Us” page of our website at www.gwinntauriainenlaw.com.