What is the 'Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967'

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 is a U.S. statute that protects certain workers 40 years of age and older from workplace discrimination. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) specifically prohibits the use of an employee’s or job applicant’s age as a factor in "hiring, promotion, discharge, compensation, or terms, conditions or privileges of employment." 

Breaking Down 'Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967'

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act, passed in 1967, cited the frequent practice of using “arbitrary age limits” to make staffing decisions. It noted that the loss of job skills due to long-term unemployment disproportionately affects older workers. The law’s objective was to minimize these damaging effects. The Act, which is enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, applies to private and public employers with at least 20 workers (on a regular basis within the current or prior calendar year), as well as to union practices affecting union members.

The rules that form the foundation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act can be found in Title 29, Chapter 14 of the U.S. Code. The intent of the act, as per the Congressional statement of findings and purpose, is "to promote employment of older persons based on their ability rather than age; to prohibit arbitrary age discrimination in employment; to help employers and workers find ways of meeting problems arising from the impact of age on employment."

The ADEA was first amended in 1986 and again in 1991 with the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act. For more, see the EEOC's Age Discrimination informational page.

Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 Protections

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act outlines a comprehensive ban of discriminatory practices based on age. Specifically, it prohibits the following:

  • Discrimination in hiring practices, the awarding or withholding of promotions, wages, terminations and layoffs.
  • The use of or making statement regarding certain age preference or limitations.
  • Denying benefits to older employees. Note: An employer is only allowed to cut benefits based on age if the cost of providing reduced benefits to older workers is the same as what providing full benefits to younger workers would cost.
  • Mandatory retirement at a certain age. Note: mandatory retirement for workers based on age is permitted with executives who are entitled to a pension that pays over an annual minimum sum.

Victims of age discrimination as outlined in the Age Discrimination in Employment Act are eligible to receive compensatory and punitive damages if reinstatement is not feasible and/or if the employer intentionally violated the law. 

RELATED TERMS
  1. Price Discrimination

    Price discrimination is a pricing strategy that charges customers ...
  2. Americans With Disabilities Act ...

    The Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination ...
  3. Normal Retirement Age (NRA)

    The normal retirement age (NRA) is the age at which people can ...
  4. Civil Rights Act of 1964

    The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is landmark federal legislation ...
  5. Discriminating Monopoly

    A discriminating monopoly is a market-dominating company that ...
  6. Employer's Liability Insurance

    Employer's liability insurance protects employers from financial ...
Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    Mortgage Discrimination: What to Watch Out For

    Mortgage discrimination, even via major banks, still exists. How to recognize its signs.
  2. Financial Advisor

    Why Your Clients Just Might Work into Their 70s

    Your clients just might work into their 70s. Here's why.
  3. Retirement

    Are We Looking At A Retirement Age Of 70 Soon?

    Other countries have been hiking their retirement age. What would make the U.S. government go in that direction?
  4. Financial Advisor

    Is Delaying Social Security Until 70 a Good Idea?

    Soon to be retirees are often told it's best to wait until age 70 to collect Social Security. Here's why this is not always the best advice.
  5. Retirement

    5 Careers You Never Retire From

    If you'd like the option to continue working in your field into your golden years, check out these careers.
  6. Retirement

    Why Procrastination Will Steal Your Future Wealth

    Putting off saving for retirement might feel like your only option right now, but this kind of procrastination can wreak havoc down the road.
  7. Retirement

    10 Years Later: How the Financial Crisis Affected Seniors

    The Great Recession was not kind to seniors, but most have managed to achieve full financial recovery.
  8. Retirement

    Retiring Early: How Long Should You Wait?

    Maximize your Social Security benefits by choosing when you retire.
  9. Retirement

    Top 6 Myths About Social Security Benefits

    Misinformation on retirement benefits is common. Here are six tips to properly inform on the facts on Social Security benefits.
  10. Financial Advisor

    3 Benefits of Working Longer (and Retiring Later)

    There are many reasons why folks in their 60s may want to keep working until at least age 70. Here are three.
RELATED FAQS
  1. What are the different types of price discrimination and how are they used?

    Learn the difference between the three major types of price discrimination and how each is used in practical business applications. Read Answer >>
  2. What does 'full retirement age' mean with regard to Social Security?

    Learn what full retirement age is and how Social Security benefits are calculated based on your age, how long you have worked, ... Read Answer >>
Trading Center