California and federal laws prohibits employees from workplace discrimination based on age. There are two types of age discrimination an employee may face on the job: (1) disparate treatment—an employee is singled out on the basis of his or her age, or (2) disparate impact—rules and regulations of an employer that appear age-neutral but in practice impact people differently based on their age. Furthermore, under the California law (FEHA), an employer cannot take an adverse employment action against an employee based on age. The FEHA’s age-related provisions apply only to employees who have reached their 40th birthday.

Under the federal law (Title VII), acts amount to illegal age discrimination in the workplace when the acts affect an employee’s “terms or conditions of employment.” “Terms or conditions of employment” is defined as hiring, firing, title, rate of pay, position, team role, hours, vacations, etc. Federal law  covers only employees age 40 and older.


Unlawful discrimination can take on many forms. Adverse employment actions include but are not limited to termination, demotion, failure to promote. Below is a non-exhaustive list of employer (and supervisor) acts that courts have found to be discriminatory:

  • Hiring procedures which tend to disfavor certain age groups;
  • The assignment or reassignment to a less favorable position because of age;
  • Fewer benefits depending upon age;
  • Fewer chances of promotion depending on age;
  • Fewer opportunities for training depending on age; and
  • Termination based on discriminatory animus towards an employee’s age.


Tumber Law Firm is based in San Francisco, California. Our attorneys represent clients in San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Monterey, Alameda, Contra Costa, Sacramento, Solano, Marin, and Sonoma Counties. Tumber Law Firm protects clients from retaliation, discrimination, and harassment involving dismissal, demotion, or denial of accommodation based on age, race, sex, religion, color, sexual orientation, marital status, association, physical or mental disability, or other legally protected classifications. Additionally we represent employees if they have not been paid the proper wages including overtime or minimum wage, or those not given the proper meal and rest breaks. If you believe that your rights have been violated, CONTACT US to setup your free consultation to discuss this matter. We take cases on a contingency basis and collect no attorney fees unless we win your case.