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Age Discrimination Protection in West Virginia

Age discrimination is not something that many people talk about. However, it is a real issue for real people. Nobody should be singled out because of age., especially when it comes to employment or other factors that can influence a person’s future. While age discrimination may make a person feel bad, it goes much deeper than that. It is against the law.

What is Age Discrimination?

Age discrimination involves treating someone unfavorably based on their age. This could include:

  • Not promoting an individual because of age-related issues
  • Firing an individual because of their age
  • Singling out an individual based on their age
  • Not hiring an individual based on their age
  • Indicating age restrictions on a job application

However, there are a number of other instances that could be considered age discrimination. The law specifically protects people who are over the age of 40. This is in response to the older population not receiving fair access to employment or advances based completely on their age. The response was to protect this age group as statistically they are the individuals who are most likely to be the focus of such bias.

How Does the Law Protect People?

The Age Discrimination Act has made this a federal issue that states must follow. In West Virginia, any business that operates with 20 or more people must adhere to the age discrimination laws. Failure to do so, allows the targeted individual to file a complaint which will begin a legal process and investigation.

The Gray Area of the Law

While the law is certainly intended to protect, there are a few gray areas. For example, the law is not designed to protect younger workers. The idea is that most people who are the focus of this type of bias is the aging community. This is not to say that younger people are not also the victim of this type of treatment, however the law does not focus on younger people. Additionally, if an employer claims that an individual is “over qualified” this does not necessarily mean it is age discrimination. Although, many people feel that it is code for saying that an employee is too old for the job.

What Should You Do?

If you or someone you know is the victim of age discrimination, do not sit idly by as your rights are being violated. You have options. You can reach out to a knowledgeable attorney and also file a complaint. To file a complaint, reach out to The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). This group is in charge of regulating the process associated with workplace discrimination. You can locate the local West Virginia office on their website.

Seek Legal Advice

Have you or someone you know been a victim of age discrimination? Know that the law protects your right to employment despite your age. If you suspect that you have been unjustly terminated or singled out due to your age, reach out to those who can help you. Attorneys at Hendrickson & Long have been providing quality legal defense in West Virginia for a number of years. Allow their experience to work for you. Contact them today and let them create a legal defense that you deserve.