Born in 1978?

Born in 1978?

In 2018, not only did you celebrate the big 4-0, but you could have also celebrated that you are now protected against age discrimination at work!

Yes, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), provides federal protection against age discrimination in the workplace beginning at 40! Employment law caveat, there are some states that have a lower age threshold.

Age discrimination is the next hot topic in employment law with a perfect storm brewing. First, the workforce is aging. Second, the last 20 years have seen unprecedented technological change that affects how work is performed. Third, a significant technology divide exists between those 40 and up whose childhood did not include iPhones, texts, or Facebook as a primary method of communication versus the under 40 crowd who is generally comfortable communicating with those tools.

A resulting stereotype can take hold that the over 40 generation is less tech savvy, less flexible to learn new skills, and less comfortable using tech, which can lead to discrimination. We use “stereotype” because plenty of people over 40 are technologically savvy and fully comfortable using tech. The purpose of the ADEA is to protect individuals from being denied employment opportunities solely because of age.

So the next time you attend a 40th birthday party, make sure to let the birthday person know that he or she is now the lucky recipient of protection against age discrimination.


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