Oakland Remote Workplace Age Discrimination Attorney
Oakland Age Discrimination Attorneys
While flexible remote work options were already becoming popular before COVID-19, the pandemic has led to an even greater shift to work-from-home arrangements. A common assumption is that remote workplaces allow employees to interact with coworkers and others in ways that do not draw attention to age. For example, age is typically not a factor when conducting business over the phone or via email.
The truth is age discrimination remains a harmful reality in the era of remote work, and older workers are often the targets. Age-related stereotypes, which are often to blame for discriminatory behavior, continue to persist. Instead of valuing the experience and input of older employees, some employers shun them in favor of younger workers.
Treating a worker or colleague unfavorably based on their age is unlawful. If you have experienced age discrimination in your remote workplace, an Oakland employment lawyer can help you pursue compensation and ensure your employer stops the discriminatory practices. Erlich Law Firm is dedicated to standing up for workers who have faced age discrimination.
What is Age Discrimination?
Many people do not realize that labor laws apply not just to physical workplaces but also to remote work environments. Federal and California labor laws classify age as a protected characteristic.
Employees who are 40 years of age or older are protected from discrimination or harassment based on their age under the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). Businesses with 20 or more employees are subject to the ADEA, while the FEHA applies to workplaces with at least five workers.
Age-based discrimination is unlawful across all aspects of employment, ranging from hiring and training to promotions, pay and firing. Additionally, harassing a worker because of their age is illegal. While the law does not bar isolated incidents or offhand comments, harassment is unlawful when it occurs frequently and results in a hostile work environment.
How Does Age Discrimination Occur in Remote Workplaces?
Remote work typically requires technology such as laptops and online tools. Employers may incorrectly assume an older worker is incapable of using virtual platforms, which may form the basis for discriminatory practices. An employer firing a senior employee and filling their position with a younger, less-experienced hire is a way in which age discrimination can occur in a remote workplace.
The tech industry in particular has been accused of perpetuating age discrimination against older members of the workforce. For example, younger employees may be given more promotions and opportunities over older workers because they are assumed to be more tech-savvy.
Employees who used to work in an office before switching to remote work may continue to face existing age-related bias. For example, bosses or coworkers may discuss their age in disparaging ways through online chats or emails.
Workers who conduct video calls or attend virtual meetings via platforms like Zoom or Microsoft Teams are also at risk of age discrimination. Just like in-person meetings, face-to-face virtual interactions allow people to make age-based assumptions.
An important point to note is that to have a legal case for age discrimination, an adverse employment action must be taken against you based on your age. For example, an employer firing or demoting an employee because of their age may be considered age discrimination. An offhand remark about your age, for instance, is not enough grounds for an employment lawsuit.
Common Types of Age Discrimination
Age discrimination can occur in a variety of ways. Sometimes it is overt, while in other cases it may harder to determine whether age is the motivating reason for the unfair treatment of an older worker.
Age discrimination is unlawful in hiring and recruiting, day-to-day employment practices and the termination of a worker. Here are some common forms of age discrimination older employees may face:
- Wrongful termination
- Demotions or pay cuts
- Unfavorable job assignments
- Biased promotion decisions
- Being forced to quit
- Hostile work environment due to age-related jokes
Filing an Age Discrimination Claim
If you have experienced an adverse employment action based on your age, you should speak to an Oakland employment lawyer. Employees who suffer age discrimination while working in a remote workplace can sue their employer under the FEHA or ADEA. When a claim is successful, the worker can recover compensation for lost wages and benefits, among other damages. A skilled employment lawyer can protect your rights and help you through the entire legal process.
Call for a Free Case Evaluation
If you have been subjected to age discrimination at work, Erlich Law Firm can advise you of your legal options. Our Oakland employment lawyers believe in righting injustices in the workplace, whether they occur in a physical office or a remote work environment. Get started today with a free consultation.
FREE CASE REVIEW
When employees' legal rights are violated, we take time to explain their legal options, listen to their goals, and aggressively argue their case until we achieve the resolution they deserve.