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Houston Age Discrimination Attorney

We are Staunch Defenders of Employee Rights

Usually, wisdom and discernment come with advanced age. Older, or as we like to call them at Leeds Law Firm, “more seasoned” employees have been around the proverbial block a few times. More seasoned workers have seen and experienced many different situations in the workplace throughout their careers. 

When it comes to the workplace, nothing usually surprises the more seasoned worker. They have also witnessed discrimination in the workplace before.

Unfortunately, employees over 40 or older may be discriminated against in the workplace, being passed over for promotions for positions they are more than qualified for or terminated due to a discriminatory and incorrect assumption that they are not “sharp “ enough to remain in the workforce. 

If you notice any negative action being taken against you in the workplace and you think age may be a motivating factor in the employer’s negative actions or discriminatory behavior, contact a Houston age discrimination attorney experienced in age discrimination cases to help you understand your rights and inform you of what action you can take.

Quick Summary:

  • Discrimination against employees 40 or older in promotions or employment due to age-related stereotypes.
  • Age discrimination in Texas is illegal under state and federal laws. Complaints can be filed with the EEOC or TWC. There is a 300-day statute of limitations for filing complaints. Successful cases may lead to remedies like back pay, reinstatement, and emotional distress compensation.
  • Common scenarios in Houston workplaces are biased hiring practices and promotions, age-based layoffs and restricted training opportunities, and workplace environments tainted by age-related jokes or comments.
  • The impact of age discrimination in the workplace is lower morale and job satisfaction across the workforce, decreased productivity and increased turnover, and a toxic work environment that reduces diversity. 
  • The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and Texas Labor Code provide protection. The ADEA is enforced by the EEOC and Texas Workforce Commission.
  • Look for differential treatment, stereotyping, harassment, and policies disproportionately impacting older workers to spot age discrimination. 
  • Combat age discrimination by documenting instances of discrimination, filing a complaint with the EEOC, consulting an employment attorney, and considering negotiation or lawsuit for unresolved discrimination.

What Do I Need To Know About Age Discrimination in Texas?

Age discrimination is illegal in Texas and is prohibited under state and federal law. Here are some key things to know about age discrimination in Texas:

Definition of age discrimination

Age discrimination refers to unequal treatment of an individual because of their age concerning any aspect of employment, including hiring, promotion, termination, or any other term or condition of employment.

Protected Age Group

Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), individuals who are 40 years of age or older are protected against age discrimination in the workplace.

Burden of Proof

The burden of proof in age discrimination cases in Texas is typically on the employee to show that age was a factor in the adverse employment action taken against them.

Filing a Complaint

If you believe you have been the victim of age discrimination in Texas, you can file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or the Texas Workforce Commission’s (TWC) Civil Rights Division.

Statute of Limitations

In Texas, you must file a complaint with the EEOC or the TWC within 300 days of the last discriminatory act.


If you are successful in an age discrimination case, you may be entitled to relief such as back pay, front pay, reinstatement, and compensation for emotional distress, among others. 

Examples and Common Scenarios in Houston Workplaces

In Houston workplaces, as elsewhere, age discrimination can manifest in various ways:

  • Hiring Practices: An employer may favor younger applicants over more qualified older candidates, believing they will bring more energy or innovation to the role, despite lacking the experience of their older counterparts.
  • Promotions and Advancements: Older employees might be overlooked for promotions, regardless of their qualifications or achievements, under the assumption that younger employees have more potential or will fit in better with the company’s future plans.
  • Layoffs and Downsizing: During cutbacks, older employees might be the first considered for layoffs, based on stereotypes that they are closer to retirement or less adaptable to new technologies or methods.
  • Training Opportunities: Younger employees might be offered more training and development opportunities, with the assumption that investing in older employees is not worthwhile.
  • Workplace Jokes and Comments: Casual, age-related jokes or remarks can contribute to a hostile work environment, making older employees feel undervalued or pushed aside.

Impact of Age Discrimination on Employees and the Workplace Environment

The impact of age discrimination extends far beyond individual employees. It affects the overall workplace environment and the company culture. When age discrimination occurs, it sends a message that the value and contributions of older employees are less important. This can have several negative consequences:

  • Lower Morale and Job Satisfaction: Employees who face or witness age discrimination may feel undervalued or marginalized, leading to decreased morale and job satisfaction. This is true not just for older employees but for the entire workforce, as they see the lack of fairness and respect.
  • Decreased Productivity: Discrimination of any kind can lead to a decrease in productivity. Employees who feel discriminated against are less likely to be engaged with their work, affecting their output and the overall productivity of the team.
  • Increased Turnover: High levels of discrimination can lead to increased turnover, especially among older employees who feel they are no longer welcome or valued. This not only results in the loss of experienced and skilled workers but also incurs significant costs related to recruitment and training.
  • Toxic Work Environment: Age discrimination can contribute to a toxic work environment, where respect and equality are undermined. Such an environment can deter potential employees and damage the company’s reputation.
  • Loss of Diversity: Age diversity, like other forms of diversity, brings a wide range of perspectives, skills, and experiences to the workplace. Discrimination against older employees can rob an organization of this valuable diversity, limiting creativity and innovation.

The Legal Framework Surrounding Age Discrimination

The fight against age discrimination in the workplace is supported by a solid legal framework at the federal and state levels. This framework ensures that employees have protections against unfair treatment based on age and provides avenues for addressing grievances.

Federal Protection: ADEA

The ADEA, enacted in 1967, is a key federal law that protects employees and job applicants aged 40 and older from discrimination in any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, promotion, job assignments, and benefits. The ADEA applies to employers with 20 or more employees, including federal, state, and local governments, as well as employment agencies and labor organizations.

State Protection: Texas Labor Code

In addition to the ADEA, the Texas Labor Code provides further protections against age discrimination for workers in Texas. While mirroring the protections offered by the ADEA, the Texas Labor Code extends these protections to some smaller businesses that may not be covered under federal law. This dual layer of protection ensures a broader coverage for Texas workers against age-related discrimination.

Enforcement Agencies

Two key agencies are responsible for enforcing these laws and ensuring that workers’ rights are protected:

  • EEOC: At the federal level, the EEOC is charged with enforcing the ADEA. Individuals who believe they have been discriminated against due to their age must first file a charge with the EEOC before taking any legal action in court. The EEOC investigates complaints, mediates disputes, and, if necessary, can file lawsuits on behalf of individuals against their employers.
  • TWC: At the state level, the TWC handles complaints of age discrimination under the Texas Labor Code. Similar to the EEOC, the TWC provides a process for filing complaints, investigating allegations of discrimination, and mediating disputes between employees and employers.

How Do I Spot Age Discrimination?

Age discrimination can be difficult to spot, as it often takes subtle forms. However, there are some common signs to look out for, including:

  • Differential Treatment: You may notice that you are being treated differently by your colleagues who are older or younger than you about promotions, pay raises, or other job benefits.
  • Stereotyping: Age-based stereotypes and assumptions about older workers, such as that they are less productive or less adaptable, can be a sign of age discrimination.
  • Harassment: Age-based jokes, insults, or harassment from colleagues or superiors can be a sign of age discrimination.
  • Disparate Impact: A facially neutral employment policy or practice that has a disproportionate impact on workers who are 40 years of age or older can be a sign of age discrimination.
  • Unequal Termination: If you are terminated from your job and replaced by a younger worker, it may be a sign of age discrimination.
  • Failure to Promote: If you are repeatedly passed over for promotions in favor of younger employees, it may be a sign of age discrimination.

If you suspect that you may be the victim of age discrimination, it is important to document any instances of discrimination and to seek the advice of an experienced employment attorney. They can help you determine whether you have a valid claim and can advise you on your rights and options.

What is the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act?

As an older worker, it’s essential to know that you have protections in place in the event of a mass layoff through the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act (OWBPA). 

This law clearly states that workers over the age of 40 must have a minimum of 45 days to consider any severance offer they receive, and they also have the right to revoke their agreement within seven days of signing the severance package. 

Additionally, employers are required to provide information about the age and position of all other workers who are also being laid off. Keeping these protections in mind can help ensure that your rights are being respected during a difficult time.

How Can I Fight Against Age Discrimination?

If you believe that you have been the victim of age discrimination, there are several steps that you can take to fight against it:

  1. Document the discrimination: Keep a record of any instances of age discrimination, including dates, names of individuals involved, and the specific actions that you believe are discriminatory.
  2. File a complaint with the EEOC: The EEOC is the federal agency responsible for enforcing the ADEA. You can file a complaint with the EEOC by contacting your local EEOC office.
  3. Consult with a competent employment attorney: An employment attorney can advise you on your rights and options and can help you determine whether you have a valid claim.
  4. Negotiate a resolution: In some cases, it may be possible to negotiate a resolution with your employer that addresses the age discrimination and provides a remedy for the harm that you have suffered.
  5. File a lawsuit: If you are unable to resolve the age discrimination through negotiation, you may choose to file a lawsuit. A lawsuit can be an effective way to hold your employer accountable for its discriminatory practices and to recover damages for the harm that you have suffered.

It’s important to remember that fighting against age discrimination can be a complex and time-consuming process. The support of a knowledgeable employment attorney can be invaluable. They can help ensure that your rights are protected and can guide you through the legal process.

Why Do I Need an Age Discrimination Attorney in Texas?

Many people facing age discrimination in the workplace may be tempted not to hire an attorney, thinking they can handle the situation on their own. This can be a mistake, as navigating the legal system can be complex and difficult, and representing oneself in a discrimination case is often challenging. 

Here are just a few reasons why hiring an experienced employment attorney can be beneficial in age discrimination cases:

  • Knowledge of the law: An attorney who works in employment law will have a deep understanding of the legal process and the intricacies of discrimination law. This knowledge can be invaluable in securing a favorable outcome in your case.
  • Experience in negotiations: Attorneys are skilled negotiators and can work with your employer to reach a fair settlement without the need for a lengthy and costly court battle.
  • Strong representation in court: If your case does go to court, an attorney can provide strong representation, making the strongest case possible on your behalf and ensuring that your rights are protected.
  • Help to navigate the legal process: The legal process can be confusing and overwhelming. An attorney can help guide you through the process, ensuring that all necessary steps are taken, and deadlines are met.

Call our Experienced Age Discrimination Attorney!

Age discrimination is a growing concern in the workforce, particularly as the population ages and more people work past retirement age. Despite being illegal, many employees face discrimination based on their age, whether it’s being passed over for promotions or being unfairly terminated. 

This type of discrimination can have a profound impact on an individual’s career and financial stability.

At Leeds Law Firm, located in Houston, Texas, we understand the difficulties of facing age discrimination in the workplace. Our team of experienced employment attorneys is dedicated to fighting for the rights of our clients and helping them get the justice they deserve.

At Leeds Law Firm, we have a successful track record of leading clients to victory in age discrimination cases. Our attorneys are knowledgeable about the law and have a deep understanding of the unique challenges faced by older workers. 

We work tirelessly to build strong cases and represent our clients with the utmost professionalism and integrity. Whether negotiating a settlement or taking a case to court, we are committed to securing the best possible outcome for our clients.

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