State Age Protection Laws and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act
AbstractSome anti-discrimination laws have the perverse effect of harming the very class they were meant to protect. This paper provides evidence that age discrimination laws belong to this perverse class. It exploits an unusual aspect of the policy for enforcement of the federal 1968 Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), which made filing an age discrimination claim less burdensome in some states than in others. After the enforcement of the federal law, white male workers over age 50 in states where the federal government allowed 300 days to file a discrimination complaint worked between 1 and 1.5 fewer weeks per year than did workers in states without laws. These men were also .3 percentage points more likely to be retired and .2 percentage points less likely to be hired. These findings suggest that in an anti-age discrimination environment, firms seek to avoid litigation through means not intended by the legislation — by not employing older workers in the first place.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Center for Retirement Research in its series Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College with number wp2006-24.
Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2006
Date of revision: Nov 2006
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More information through EDIRC
age discrimination; litigation; age protection laws;
Other versions of this item:
- Joanna Lahey, 2008. "State Age Protection Laws and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 51(3), pages 433-460, 08.
- Joanna Lahey, 2006. "State Age Protection Laws and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act," NBER Working Papers 12048, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
- J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGE-2007-08-08 (Economics of Ageing)
- NEP-ALL-2007-08-08 (All new papers)
- NEP-REG-2007-08-08 (Regulation)
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- Bell, David N.F. & Rutherford, Alasdair C., 2013. "Older Workers and Working Time," IZA Discussion Papers 7546, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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