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Wingate v. Gage County School District, 8th Cir., No. 07-3492, June 16, 2008

Articles Discussing Case:

Employer May Use Subjective Criteria to Defeat Claim of Pretext in ADEA Case.

Ogletree Deakins • July 01, 2008
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibits an employer from failing to hire or promote an individual who is at least 40 years old because of that individual’s age. Once the individual establishes a prima facie case of discrimination – by showing that she was in the protected age group; that she was otherwise qualified for the position; and that a younger person was hired to fill the position – a legal presumption arises that the employer unlawfully discriminated against that individual. The burden then shifts to the employer to provide a non-discriminatory reason for the company’s failure to hire. The employee can demonstrate that the proffered reason was a “pretext” for discrimination by presenting evidence indicating that age was a determinative factor in the adverse employment decision.