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Workers Over the Age of 40 Who Receive Severance Have Special Rights

Workers Over the Age of 40 Who Receive Severance Have Special Rights

Workers Over the Age of 40 Who Receive Severance Have Special Rights

If you are over 40, there are specific guidelines that employers must follow when offering a severance agreement to get you to forgo your rights. These severance agreements must be expressly stated in writing in accordance with federal law. You cannot be rushed into signing the agreement; rather, you must be given enough time to evaluate it.

Age discrimination may result from violations. If you believe you have been the victim of age discrimination or wrongful termination, contact an employment law attorney by calling PLBSH at (800) 435-7542 for a legal consultation.

What must be said in the severance agreement?

Separation and severance agreements are legally binding post-employment arrangements. They frequently occur following a layoff or a reduction in force (RIF). The employer consents to pay severance. The employee agrees to abide by the agreement’s terms in order to obtain it.

This frequently entails renunciating the right to sue your former employer for claims such wrongful termination or age discrimination, refraining from contacting former workers or customers, and refraining from engaging in business competition with them.

Additional requirements for severance agreements involving workers over the age of 40

However, there are extra restrictions under the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) if you are over 40. All waivers of your rights under the ADEA must be made intentionally and willingly, according to the ADEA as amended by the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act (OWBPA)2.

The agreement to relinquish your rights must be clear enough for the average person to understand, specifically mention your rights under the ADEA, not require you to give up rights you do not yet have, give you something of value to which you were not previously entitled in exchange for the waiver of your rights, contain a written provision telling you to speak with a lawyer before signing the waiver, and give you enough time to review the agreement.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) regulations further stipulate that the waiver must be simply written, utilize language appropriate to your level of study, be devoid of technical jargon and long, complex phrases, be truthful, and specifically mention the ADEA.

Your right to take part in a matter before the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) cannot ever be waived by the separation agreement. All employers with 20 or more employees are subject to these additional regulations.

How long do I have to think about the agreement?

According to federal law, employees who are 40 years of age or older must be given enough time to think over the severance package. The amount of leaving employees will determine how much time is needed. You also have a limited window of time following the agreement’s signing in which you can withdraw your waiver. Only after the expiration of the period for revocation shall the Agreement become effective.

If you are the lone employee being let go, you must have at least 21 days to think about the decision to renounce your ADEA rights. Before signing, contact PLBSH at (800) 435-7542 now to have an employment law attorney go over your options.

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