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Supreme Court drops pivotal age case

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

Can employees file age-discrimination lawsuits based on the fact that a company's action, while not discriminatory on its face, has an unfair impact on workers over age 40? In a handful of circuits (2nd, 8th and 9th) workers are allowed to use this "disparate impact" theory to bring age-bias claims. Six other circuits (1st, 3rd, 6th, 7th, 10th and 11th) say no. The Supreme Court was expected to make a final, decisive call on this issue. It heard oral arguments on a case in March but then dismissed the case without a decision. (Adams v. Florida Power Corp., No. 01-584) Bottom line: Continue to follow your circuit's decision.

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