The general rule in Ohio is that an employer can terminate an employee for any reason or no reason. Said another way, employment in Ohio is “at will.” The employee can quit at any time for any reason and an employer can terminate an employee and any time for any reason. However an employer may not terminate an employee for an unlawful reason. One of those reasons is because of their age.
Both state and federal laws prohibit discrimination against people over 40. That discrimination can take the form of a termination, refusal to hire, refusal to promote, or other adverse job actions simply because that person is over 40. If you believe that you are the victim of age discrimination, you should contact an employment lawyer who can evaluate your case and advise you on various courses of action.
Employers will often make comments about the inability to “teach old dogs new tricks,” or that the company needs “new blood.” These are often just code words for getting rid of older employees. Sometimes employers simply want to cut payroll and often older employees, because they have been on the job longer and are more experienced, are paid more than younger employees. As a consequence, your termination has nothing to do with your performance and everything to do with your age.
If you think this has happened to you, you should find an employment lawyer who can consult with you and advise you on how to proceed. At a minimum, you should start to collect evidence that supports your claim of age discrimination. We often advise employees to keep a log of things that were said and events that occurred that can later be used to build your case. Likewise, e-mails and other documents, to which you otherwise have a lawful right to see, can be invaluable.
For more information please call our office. We represent victims of age discrimination throughout central Ohio.