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Is forced retirement legal?

If you feel like your employer has been trying to muscle you out of your position into retirement, you are far from alone. Florida's rapidly aging workforce is a prime target for this type of discrimination. However, it is not always illegal to encourage or mandate retirement based on age.

If you are employed in a certain category of jobs, then it might be completely legal for an employer to enforce a retirement age. A Forbes article lists a number of jobs that still carry a mandatory age of retirement, including airline pilots and air traffic controllers.

The reasoning behind these retirement rules is that it is not worth taking a chance on a statistically lower reflex response, even if you as an individual might be competent for years after the prescribed retirement age. Employers in some professions, such as accounting and law, might also require an early exit for leadership individuals. If this applies to you, you could probably find these terms in your partnership or employment contract.

Assuming you do not fly jet planes or manage a legal firm from which you are contractually obligated to retire, actions taken by your employer to force you out of your position based on your age could be illegal. This is especially true if your organization receives federal funding.

It is not always clear whether you have a bad boss or you are a victim of workplace discrimination. To determine your legal status in terms of illegal ageism victimhood, it is often best to first find out if your profession allows mandatory retirement ages. This is not meant as specific legal advice, and should be taken only as educational material.

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