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Age discrimination claim may bar other claims

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Firing

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that to prove age discrimination, employees have to show that age was the sole reason for an adverse employment action. That usually means employees can’t claim that other types of discrimination were also in play.

Recent case: Anthony Prisco, who is 62, sued his employer, alleging that he was fired because of age and disability discrimination. His employer asked the court to toss out the case because someone can’t blame his firing on age bias while at the same time alleging disability discrimination as another reason.

The court said it would let Prisco’s case continue for now. However, it left open the possibility that, should a trial occur, Prisco might have to pick one claim or the other instead of arguing that he was discriminated on the basis of both age and disability discrimination. (Prisco v. Methodist Hospital, No. 10-3141, ED PA, 2011)

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