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Age discrimination harder to prove following 7th Circuit ruling

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Employment Law,Human Resources

The 7th Circuit’s recent opinion in Martino v. MCI (No. 08-2405, 7th Cir., 2009) represents the first opportunity for that court to apply the U.S. Supreme Court’s recently clarified standard for determining liability in disparate-treatment cases brought under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA).

Together, the two decisions make it harder for employees to win some age discrimination lawsuits.

In June 2009, in Gross v. FBL Financial Services, Inc., the Supreme Court made it more difficult for employees to win age discrimination cases by holding that an employee “… must prove that age was the ‘but-for’ cause of the employer’s adverse decision.”

That’s different from what employees suing under Title VII must prove. Those employees need to show only that their protected status was a “motivating factor” in the employer’s decision.

The 7th Circuit case

Guy Martino was hired by MCI when he was 54 years old as...(register to read more)

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