Thursday, February 24, 2011

68-year old Salesman Wins Age Discrimination Lawsuit against McMachon’s RV

These days, a lot of older employees have been getting passed over or fired in favor of younger or fresh out of college workers. Now that the U.S. is in recession, experience and wisdom at work isn’t as valuable as hiring cheaper labor.

This is why most employers find means and ways to cut older employees off the payroll (whether its termination, constructive dismissal, or even forced retirement) and opt to hire younger workers who would gladly work for a lower pay and less benefits.

However, this does not mean that older employees especially those aged 40-years old and above have no remedy for this kind of discriminatory treatment.

Take for example, the recent victory claimed by a 68-year old salesman from Placentia. Recently, he was awarded by an Orange County jury damages amounting to $385,000 after he filed an age discrimination lawsuit against his employer.

Bob Liemandt is a former employee of McMahon’s RV, a retailer of recreational vehicles in Irvine, and he has worked as a car salesman for 46 years. Allegedly, in 2009, after a massive heart attack in 2005, he started getting hinted into and pressured at retiring. A former employee testified during trial that the company’s president, Brent McMahon even called Liemandt a “liability” after his heart attack and said that the company had to get rid of him. In his complaint, Liemandt claimed that he was fired after an argument with one of the managers on the same day another employee was let go.

The jury found the company guilty of wrongful termination based on age and that the company violated public policy. Further, McMahon’s was also found guilty of oppression, fraud, and malice by the jury which merited the award of punitive damages amounting to $50,000. The rest of the award covered Liemandt’s backwages, lost commissions, loss of income, as well as compensation for his pain and suffering.

Although the company is going to appeal the case, according to Liemandt, he sued not just because of age discrimination. He wanted to take a stand for himself as well as others who were terminated because of their age.

Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), it is unlawful to discriminate against an employee or job applicant because of his age. This protection against age discrimination encompasses the following aspects of employment: hiring, firing, pay, promotion, job benefits, lay-off, or any other term or condition of employment.

This is why employees like Liemandt should not be afraid to take a stand and fight for their rights against discrimination. For more questions on age discrimination claims, you may call expert Los Angeles attorneys from the Mesriani Law Group at (310) 826-6300 or send us an email at