HCBE Faculty Articles

Discrimination and the Aging American Workforce: Legal Analysis and Management Strategies


Frank J. Cavico0000-0002-6258-2136


Bahaudin Mujtaba0000-0003-1615-3100

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Journal of Legal Issues and Cases in Business



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Aging is a reality of life and American workforce is aging. Recessionary concerns have increased concerns of layoffs for older workers as they are often the highly paid employees with maximum benefits. The article, therefore, provides an overview of the U.S. Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and other age discrimination laws. The article discusses the nature and role of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in implementing and enforcing age discrimination law. This article, in particular discloses that the plaintiff employee’s legal burden in the U.S. for establishing a successful case of age discrimination against his or her employer is a very challenging one indeed. American multinational corporations, as well as foreign firms operating in the U.S., must be aware of U.S. civil rights law when conducting business in the United States. These firms also must be keenly aware of the important and far-reaching legal extraterritorial rule that a U.S. company that employs U.S. citizens anywhere in the world generally will be subject to a civil rights lawsuit if these employees are discriminated against based on the protected categories. The main purposes of this article are to provide to leaders and managers practical strategies, tactics, and recommendations to comply with age discrimination laws, to maintain fair employment practices, and how to handle an actual age-based discrimination lawsuit. Detailed recommendations are supplied to managers on how to deal with the ADEA and especially how to avoid legal liability pursuant to this important anti-discrimination statute. Recommendations are also provided on how to deal with and to defend age discrimination lawsuits cases.





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