Recent Changes to the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination and Age Discrimination

On October 5, 2021, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed into law legislation that expands the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) to expand protections for older employees.

Section 11 of the NJLAD has been removed which means that New Jersey employers can no longer refuse to hire or promote an employee on the basis of them being age 70 or older. Prior to the removal of Section 11, the NJLAD allowed employers to refuse to hire or promote any person over the age of 70. However, it did not allow an employer to otherwise discriminate against employees over 70 by, for example, terminating their employment.

Additionally, the NJLAD has broadened the remedies that employees can pursue to obtain relief if they are victims of age discrimination. Section 5 of the NJLAD now includes that if an employee is forced to retire because of age, he or she has a wide range of legal remedies provided by the applicable law. This allows a broader recovery and subjects employers to greater risk if they engage in unlawful age discrimination.

As people are living longer, it makes sense for them to remain in the workforce longer. If you have been subjected to age discrimination or forced to retire, you should speak to an attorney about your rights.