In order to avoid a costly, time-consuming court battle, Enterprise Rental Car has agreed to pay $425,000 to settle an age discrimination complaint filed with the U.S. Equal Employment opportunity commission.
The complaint alleged that between 2008 and 2011, the company discriminated against older employees applying for the Enterprise management training program. Apparently, these ‘old people’ over the age of 40, believed they were being excluded from consideration based on their ages. They saw many of these opportunities going to younger, less experienced applicants and filed a complaint with the EEOC.
The federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) requires that employers select the best qualified job candidates regardless of age. Specifically, the law prohibits employers from discriminating against employees and applicants who are at least 40 years old based on age. The ADEA protects workers in every phase of the employment relationship, including job advertisements, interviewing, hiring, compensation, promotion, discipline, job evaluations, demotion, training, job assignments, and termination.
The resulting investigation in the Enterprise case found that, indeed, no candidates over the age of 40 had been hired to management training during the three year period. Instead, younger, less-qualified applicants were awarded the positions according to the EEOC findings. To make matters worse, the EEOC also discovered the Los Angeles area branch neglected to maintain application records in accordance with federal law.
Although the company did not acknowledge any wrong doing with regard to discriminating against older employees stating ‘they were not hired because they simply were not qualified’, they opted to settle out of court for a handsome 425K.
If you believe you have been subjected to age discrimination by your employer or potential employer, contact the employment Law Offices of Stoltze and Updegraff PLC located in Des Moines, Iowa for help.
Source: Los Angeles Times, “L.A. Enterprise Rent-a-Car to Settle Age Discrimination Charges”, by Samantha Masunaga, July 14, 2015.; Nolo, “Your Rights Against Age Discrimination”, accessed July 14, 2015.