While it is never okay for employers to make disparaging comments about an employee's age (or any other personal characteristic, for that matter), not all age-related remarks are fodder for an age discrimination lawsuit.
A supervisor referred to a 50-something employee as the "old man" of the operation. Ten months later, the employee's job was eliminated in a reorganization. Shortly after, the company hired an individual nine years his junior to fill a newly created position. The employee contended that the "so-called reorganization" was actually an attempt to get rid of him because of his age, and his supervisor's remark proved it.
Although the age difference created an inference of age discrimination, the court found that the differences in the two positions were so significant that it could not conclude that the new employee had been hired to replace the older worker. It also ruled that a single remark in...(register to read more)