Legal Alert: Supreme Court Finds State Disability Pension Plan does not Violate ADEA


The U.S. Supreme Court recently held that Kentucky?s disability retirement program, which imputes years of service to employees who become disabled before becoming eligible for a regular pension, but does not do so for employees who become disabled after becoming pension eligible, does not violate the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). See Kentucky Retirement Systems v. EEOC (June 19, 2008). In its five to four decision, the Court rejected the argument of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that such a plan automatically discriminates because of age. The Court found that Kentucky?s plan distinguishes among employees based on pension status, not age. In such cases, a person challenging the plan must present evidence that the different treatment was ?actually motivated? by age, not pension status, which the EEOC failed to do.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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