Are You a Legal Professional?

Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is the text of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (Pub. L. 90-202) (ADEA), as amended, as it appears in volume 29 of the United States Code, beginning at section 621. The ADEA prohibits employment discrimination against persons 40 years of age or older. The Older Workers Benefit Protection Act (Pub. L. 101-433) amends several sections of the ADEA. In addition, section 115 of the Civil Rights Act of 1991 (P.L. 102-166) amends section 7(e) of the ADEA (29 U. S.C. 626(e))

. These amendments appear in boldface type. Cross references to the ADEA as enacted appear in italics following each section heading. Editor's notes also appear in italics.


An Act
To prohibit age discrimination in employment.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United
States of America in Congress assembled, that this Act may be cited as the
"Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967".

* * *

STATEMENT OF FINDINGS AND PURPOSE

SEC. 621. [Section 2]

(a) The Congress hereby finds and declares that-

(1) in the face of rising productivity and affluence, older workers
find themselves disadvantaged in their efforts to retain employment, and
especially to regain employment when displaced from jobs;

(2) the setting of arbitrary age limits regardless of potential for
job performance has become a common practice, and certain otherwise
desirable practices may work to the disadvantage of older persons;

(3) the incidence of unemployment, especially long-term
unemployment with resultant deterioration of skill, morale, and employer
acceptability is, relative to the younger ages, high among older workers;
their numbers are great and growing; and their employment problems grave;

(4) the existence in industries affecting commerce, of arbitrary
discrimination in employment because of age, burdens commerce and the free
flow of goods in commerce.

(b) It is therefore the purpose of this chapter to promote employment of
older persons based on their ability rather than age; to prohibit
arbitrary age discrimination in employment; to help employers and workers
find ways of meeting problems arising from the impact of age on employment.

EDUCATION AND RESEARCH PROGRAM

SEC. 622. [Section 3]

(a) The Secretary of Labor [EEOC] shall undertake studies and
provide information to labor unions, management, and the general public
concerning the needs and abilities of older workers, and their potentials
for continued employment and contribution to the economy. In order to
achieve the purposes of this chapter, the Secretary of Labor [EEOC]
shall carry on a continuing program of education and information,
under which he may, among other measures-

(1) undertake research, and promote research, with a view to
reducing barriers to the employment of older persons, and the promotion of
measures for utilizing their skills;

(2) publish and otherwise make available to employers, professional
societies, the various media of communication, and other interested
persons the findings of studies and other materials for the promotion of
employment;

(3) foster through the public employment service system and through
cooperative effort the development of facilities of public and private
agencies for expanding the opportunities and potentials of older persons;

(4) sponsor and assist State and community informational and
educational programs.

(b) Not later than six months after the effective date of this chapter,
the Secretary shall recommend to the Congress any measures he may deem
desirable to change the lower or upper age limits set forth in section 631
of this title [section 12].

PROHIBITION OF AGE DISCRIMINATION

SEC. 623. [Section 4]

(a) It shall be unlawful for an employer-

(1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual or
otherwise discriminate against any individual with respect to his
compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of
such individual's age;

(2) to limit, segregate, or classify his employees in any way which
would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment
opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his status as an employee,
because of such individual's age; or

(3) to reduce the wage rate of any employee in order to comply with
this chapter.

(b) It shall be unlawful for an employment agency to fail or refuse to
refer for employment, or otherwise to discriminate against, any individual
because of such individual's age, or to classify or refer for employment
any individual on the basis of such individual's age.

(c) It shall be unlawful for a labor organization-

(1) to exclude or to expel from its membership, or otherwise to
discriminate against, any individual because of his age;

(2) to limit, segregate, or classify its membership, or to classify
or fail or refuse to refer for employment any individual, in any way which
would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment
opportunities, or would limit such employment opportunities or otherwise
adversely affect his status as an employee or as an applicant for
employment, because of such individual's age;

(3) to cause or attempt to cause an employer to discriminate
against an individual in violation of this section.

(d) It shall be unlawful for an employer to discriminate against any of
his employees or applicants for employment, for an employment agency to
discriminate against any individual, or for a labor organization to
discriminate against any member thereof or applicant for membership,
because such individual, member or applicant for membership has opposed
any practice made unlawful by this section, or because such individual,
member or applicant for membership has made a charge, testified, assisted,
or participated in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or
litigation under this chapter.

(e) It shall be unlawful for an employer, labor organization, or
employment agency to print or publish, or cause to be printed or
published, any notice or advertisement relating to employment by such an
employer or membership in or any classification or referral for
employment by such a labor organization, or relating to any classification
or referral for employment by such an employment agency, indicating any
preference, limitation, specification, or discrimination, based on age.

(f) It shall not be unlawful for an employer, employment agency, or labor
organization-

(1) to take any action otherwise prohibited under subsections (a),
(b), (c), or (e) of this section where age is a bona fide occupational
qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of the
particular business, or where the differentiation is based on reasonable
factors other than age, or where such practices involve an employee in a
workplace in a foreign country, and compliance with such subsections would
cause such employer, or a corporation controlled by such employer, to
violate the laws of the country in which such workplace is located;

(2) to take any action otherwise prohibited under subsection (a), (b),
(c), or (e) of this section-

(A) to observe the terms of a bona fide seniority system that is
not intended to evade the purposes of this chapter, except that no such
seniority system shall require or permit the involuntary retirement of any
individual specified by section 631(a) of this title because of the age of
such individual; or

(B) to observe the terms of a bona fide employee benefit plan-

(i) where, for each benefit or benefit package, the actual amount
of payment made or cost incurred on behalf of an older worker is no less
than that made or incurred on behalf of a younger worker, as permissible
under section 1625.10, title 29, Code of Federal Regulations (as in
effect on June 22, 1989); or

(ii) that is a voluntary early retirement incentive plan consistent
with the relevant purpose or purposes of this chapter. Notwithstanding
clause (i) or (ii) of subparagraph (B), no such employee benefit plan or
voluntary early retirement incentive plan shall excuse the failure to hire
any individual, and no such employee benefit plan shall require or permit
the involuntary retirement of any individual specified by section 631(a)
of this title, because of the age of such individual. An employer,
employment agency, or labor organization acting under subparagraph (A), or
under clause (i) or (ii) of subparagraph (B), shall have the burden of
proving that such actions are lawful in any civil enforcement proceeding
brought under this chapter; or

(3) to discharge or otherwise discipline an individual for good
cause.

(g) [Repealed]

(h) (1) If an employer controls a corporation whose place of
incorporation is in a foreign country, any practice by such corporation
prohibited under this section shall be presumed to be such practice by
such employer.

(2) The prohibitions of this section shall not apply where the
employer is a foreign person not controlled by an American employer.

(3) For the purpose of this subsection the determination of whether
an employer controls a corporation shall be based upon the-

(A) interrelation of operations,

(B) common management,

(C) centralized control of labor relations, and

(D) common ownership or financial control, of the employer and the
corporation.

(i) It shall not be unlawful for an employer which is a State, a political
subdivision of a State, an agency or instrumentality of a State or a
political subdivision of a State, or an interstate agency to fail or
refuse to hire or to discharge any individual because of such
individual's age if such action is taken-

(1) with respect to the employment of an individual as a
firefighter or as a law enforcement officer and the individual has
attained the age of hiring or retirement in effect under applicable State
or local law on March 3, 1983, and

(2) pursuant to a bona fide hiring or retirement plan that is not a
subterfuge to evade the purposes of this chapter.

(j) (1) Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, it shall be
unlawful for an employer, an employment agency, a labor organization, or
any combination thereof to establish or maintain an employee pension
benefit plan which requires or permits-

(A) in the case of a defined benefit plan, the cessation of an
employee's benefit accrual, or the reduction of the rate of an employee's
benefit accrual, because of age, or

(B) in the case of a defined contribution plan, the cessation of
allocations to an employee's account, or the reduction of the rate at
which amounts are allocated to an employee's account, because of age.

(2) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit an
employer, employment agency, or labor organization from observing any
provision of an employee pension benefit plan to the extent that such
provision imposes (without regard to age) a limitation on the amount of
benefits that the plan provides or a limitation on the number of years of
service or years of participation which are taken into account for
purposes of determining benefit accrual under the plan.

(3) In the case of any employee who, as of the end of any plan year
under a defined benefit plan, has attained normal retirement age under
such plan-

(A) if distribution of benefits under such plan with respect to
such employee has commenced as of the end of such plan year, then any
requirement of this subsection for continued accrual of benefits under
such plan with respect to such employee during such plan year shall be
treated as satisfied to the extent of the actuarial equivalent of
in-service distribution of benefits, and

(B) if distribution of benefits under such plan with respect to
such employee has not commenced as of the end of such year in accordance
with section 1056(a)(3) of this title [section 206(a)(3) of the
Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974]
and section
401(a)(14)(C) of title 26 [the Internal Revenue Code of 1986], and
the payment of benefits under such plan with respect to such employee is
not suspended during such plan year pursuant to section 1053(a)(3)(B) of
this title [section 203(a)(3)(B) of the Employee Retirement Income
Security Act of 1974]
or section 411(a)(3)(B) of title 26 [the
Internal Revenue Code of 1986]
, then any requirement of this
subsection for continued accrual of benefits under such plan with respect
to such employee during such plan year shall be treated as satisfied to
the extent of any adjustment in the benefit payable under the plan during
such plan year attributable to the delay in the distribution of benefits
after the attainment of normal retirement age.

The provisions of this paragraph shall apply in accordance with
regulations of the Secretary of the Treasury. Such regulations shall
provide for the application of the preceding provisions of this paragraph
to all employee pension benefit plans subject to this subsection and may
provide for the application of such provisions, in the case of any such
employee, with respect to any period of time within a plan year.

(4) Compliance with the requirements of this subsection with
respect to an employee pension benefit plan shall constitute compliance
with the requirements of this section relating to benefit accrual under
such plan.

(5) Paragraph (1) shall not apply with respect to any employee who
is a highly compensated employee (within the meaning of section 414(q) of
title 26 [the Internal Revenue Code of 1986]) to the extent
provided in regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury for
purposes of precluding discrimination in favor of highly compensated
employees within the meaning of subchapter D of chapter 1 of title 26
[the Internal Revenue Code of 1986].

(6) A plan shall not be treated as failing to meet the requirements
of paragraph (1) solely because the subsidized portion of any early
retirement benefit is disregarded in determining benefit accruals.

(7) Any regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury
pursuant to clause (v) of section 411(b)(1)(H) of title 26 [the
Internal Revenue Code of 1986]
and subparagraphs (C) and (D) of
section 411(b)(2) of title 26 [the Internal Revenue Code of 1986]
shall apply with respect to the requirements of this subsection in the
same manner and to the same extent as such regulations apply with respect
to the requirements of such sections 411(b)(1)(H) and 411(b)(2).

(8) A plan shall not be treated as failing to meet the requirements
of this section solely because such plan provides a normal retirement age
described in section 1002(24)(B) of this title [section 3(24)(B) of the
Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974]
and section
411(a)(8)(B) of title 26 [the Internal Revenue Code of 1986].

(9) For purposes of this subsection-

(A) The terms ";employee pension benefit plan";, ";defined benefit
plan";, ";defined contribution plan";, and ";normal retirement age"; have
the meanings provided such terms in section 1002 of this title [section
3 of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974]
.

(B) The term ";compensation"; has the meaning provided by section
414(s) of title 26 [the Internal Revenue Code of 1986].

(k) A seniority system or employee benefit plan shall comply
with this chapter regardless of the date of adoption of such system or
plan.

(l) Notwithstanding clause (i) or (ii) of subsection (f)(2)(B) of
this section-

(1) It shall not be a violation of subsection (a), (b), (c), or (e)
of this section solely because-

(A) an employee pension benefit plan (as defined in section 1002(2)
of this title [section 3(2) of the Employee Retirement Income Security
Act of 1974]
) provides for the attainment of a minimum age as a
condition of eligibility for normal or early retirement benefits; or

(B) a defined benefit plan (as defined in section 1002(35) of this
title [section 3(35) of such Act]) provides for-

(i) payments that constitute the subsidized portion of an early
retirement benefit; or

(ii) social security supplements for plan participants that
commence before the age and terminate at the age (specified by the plan)
when participants are eligible to receive reduced or unreduced
old-age insurance benefits under title II of the Social Security Act
(42 U.S.C. 401 et seq.), and that do not exceed such old-age
insurance benefits.

(2) (A) It shall not be a violation of subsection (a), (b), (c), or
(e) of this section solely because following a contingent event unrelated
to age

(i) the value of any retiree health benefits received by an
individual eligible for an immediate pension;

(ii) the value of any additional pension benefits that are made
available solely as a result of the contingent event unrelated to age and
following which the individual is eligible for not less than an immediate
and unreduced pension; or

(iii) the values described in both clauses (i) and (ii); are
deducted from severance pay made available as a result of the contingent
event unrelated to age.

(B) For an individual who receives immediate pension benefits that
are actuarially reduced under subparagraph (A)(i), the amount of the
deduction available pursuant to subparagraph (A)(i) shall be reduced by
the same percentage as the reduction in the pension benefits.

(C) For purposes of this paragraph, severance pay shall include
that portion of supplemental unemployment compensation benefits (as
described in section 501(c)(17) of title 26 [the Internal Revenue Code
of 1986]
) that-

(i) constitutes additional benefits of up to 52 weeks;

(ii) has the primary purpose and effect of continuing benefits
until an individual becomes eligible for an immediate and unreduced
pension; and

(iii) is discontinued once the individual becomes eligible for an
immediate and unreduced pension.

(D) For purposes of this paragraph and solely in order to make the
deduction authorized under this paragraph, the term ";retiree health
benefits"; means benefits provided pursuant to a group health plan
covering retirees, for which (determined as of the contingent event
unrelated to age)-

(i) the package of benefits provided by the employer for the
retirees who are below age 65 is at least comparable to benefits provided
under title XVIII of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395 et seq.);

(ii) the package of benefits provided by the employer for the
retirees who are age 65 and above is at least comparable to that offered
under a plan that provides a benefit package with one-fourth the
value of benefits provided under title XVIII of such Act; or

(iii) the package of benefits provided by the employer is as
described in clauses (i) and (ii).

(E) (i) If the obligation of the employer to provide retiree health
benefits is of limited duration, the value for each individual shall be
calculated at a rate of $3,000 per year for benefit years before age 65,
and $750 per year for benefit years beginning at age 65 and above.

(ii) If the obligation of the employer to provide retiree health
benefits is of unlimited duration, the value for each individual shall be
calculated at a rate of $48,000 for individuals below age 65, and $24,000
for individuals age 65 and above.

(iii) The values described in clauses (i) and (ii) shall be
calculated based on the age of the individual as of the date of the
contingent event unrelated to age. The values are effective on October 16,
1990, and shall be adjusted on an annual basis, with respect to a
contingent event that occurs subsequent to the first year after October
16, 1990, based on the medical component of the Consumer Price Index for
all-urban consumers published by the Department of Labor.

(iv) If an individual is required to pay a premium for retiree
health benefits, the value calculated pursuant to this subparagraph shall
be reduced by whatever percentage of the overall premium the individual is
required to pay.

(F) If an employer that has implemented a deduction pursuant to
subparagraph (A) fails to fulfill the obligation described in subparagraph
(E), any aggrieved individual may bring an action for specific performance
of the obligation described in subparagraph (E). The relief shall be in
addition to any other remedies provided under Federal or State law.

(3) It shall not be a violation of subsection (a), (b), (c), or (e)
of this section solely because an employer provides a bona fide employee
benefit plan or plans under which long-term disability benefits
received by an individual are reduced by any pension benefits (other than
those attributable to employee contributions)-

(A) paid to the individual that the individual voluntarily elects
to receive; or

(B) for which an individual who has attained the later of age 62 or
normal retirement age is eligible.

STUDY BY SECRETARY OF LABOR

SEC. 624. [Section 5]

(a) (1) The Secretary of Labor [EEOC] is directed to undertake
an appropriate study of institutional and other arrangements giving rise
to involuntary retirement, and report his findings and any appropriate
legislative recommendations to the President and to the Congress. Such
study shall include-

(A) an examination of the effect of the amendment made by section
3(a) of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act Amendments of 1978 in
raising the upper age limitation established by section 631(a) of this
title [section 12(a)] to 70 years of age;

(B) a determination of the feasibility of eliminating such
limitation;

(C) a determination of the feasibility of raising such limitation
above 70 years of age; and

(D) an examination of the effect of the exemption contained in
section 631(c) of this title [section 12(c)], relating to certain
executive employees, and the exemption contained in section 631(d) of this
title [section 12(d)], relating to tenured teaching personnel.

(2) The Secretary [EEOC] may undertake the study required by
paragraph (1) of this subsection directly or by contract or other
arrangement.

(b) The report required by subsection (a) of this section shall be
transmitted to the President and to the Congress as an interim report not
later than January 1, 1981, and in final form not later than January 1,
1982.

TRANSFER OF FUNCTIONS

[All functions relating to age discrimination administration and
enforcement vested by Section 6 in the Secretary of Labor or the Civil
Service Commission were transferred to the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission effective January 1, 1979 under the President's Reorganization
Plan No. 1.]

ADMINISTRATION

SEC. 625. [Section 6]

The Secretary [EEOC] shall have the power-

(a) to make delegations, to appoint such agents and employees, and to pay
for technical assistance on a fee for service basis, as he deems necessary
to assist him in the performance of his functions under this chapter;

(b) to cooperate with regional, State, local, and other agencies, and to
cooperate with and furnish technical assistance to employers, labor
organizations, and employment agencies to aid in effectuating the purposes
of this chapter.

RECORDKEEPING, INVESTIGATION, AND ENFORCEMENT

SEC. 626. [Section 7]

(a) The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shall have the power
to make investigations and require the keeping of records necessary or
appropriate for the administration of this chapter in accordance with the
powers and procedures provided in sections 209 and 211 of this title
[sections 9 and 11 of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, as
amended]
.

(b) The provisions of this chapter shall be enforced in accordance with
the powers, remedies, and procedures provided in sections 211(b), 216
(except for subsection (a) thereof), and 217 of this title [sections
11(b), 16 (except for subsection (a) thereof), and 17 of the Fair Labor
Standards Act of 1938, as amended]
, and subsection (c) of this
section. Any act prohibited under section 623 of this title [section
4]
shall be deemed to be a prohibited act under section 215 of this
title [section 15 of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, as
amended]
. Amounts owing to a person as a result of a violation of this
chapter shall be deemed to be unpaid minimum wages or unpaid overtime
compensation for purposes of sections 216 and 217 of this title
[sections 16 and 17 of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, as
amended]
: Provided, That liquidated damages shall be payable only in
cases of willful violations of this chapter. In any action brought to
enforce this chapter the court shall have jurisdiction to grant such legal
or equitable relief as may be appropriate to effectuate the purposes of
this chapter, including without limitation judgments compelling
employment, reinstatement or promotion, or enforcing the liability for
Amounts deemed to be unpaid minimum wages or unpaid overtime compensation
under this section. Before instituting any action under this section, the
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shall attempt to eliminate the
discriminatory practice or practices alleged, and to effect voluntary
compliance with the requirements of this chapter through informal methods
of conciliation, conference, and persuasion.

(c) (1) Any person aggrieved may bring a civil action in any court of
competent jurisdiction for such legal or equitable relief as will
effectuate the purposes of this chapter: Provided, That the right of any
person to bring such action shall terminate upon the commencement of an
action by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to enforce the right
of such employee under this chapter.

(2) In an action brought under paragraph (1), a person shall be
entitled to a trial by jury of any issue of fact in any such action for
recovery of amounts owing as a result of a violation of this chapter,
regardless of whether equitable relief is sought by any party in such
action.

(d) No civil action may be commenced by an individual under this section
until 60 days after a charge alleging unlawful discrimination has been
filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Such a charge
shall be filed-

(1) within 180 days after the alleged unlawful practice occurred;
or

(2) in a case to which section 633(b) of this title applies, within
300 days after the alleged unlawful practice occurred, or within 30 days
after receipt by the individual of notice of termination of proceedings
under State law, whichever is earlier.

Upon receiving such a charge, the Commission shall promptly notify all
persons named in such charge as prospective defendants in the action and
shall promptly seek to eliminate any alleged unlawful practice by informal
methods of conciliation, conference, and persuasion.

(e) Section 259 of this title [section 10 of the Portal-to-Portal
Act of 1947]
shall apply to actions under this chapter. If a charge
filed with the Commission under this chapter is dismissed or the
proceedings of the Commission are otherwise terminated by the Commission,
the Commission shall notify the person aggrieved. A civil action may be
brought under this section by a person defined in section 630(a) of this
title [section 11(a)] against the respondent named in the charge
within 90 days after the date of the receipt of such notice.

(f) (1) An individual may not waive any right or claim under this
chapter unless the waiver is knowing and voluntary. Except as provided in
paragraph (2), a waiver may not be considered knowing and voluntary unless
at a minimum-

(A) the waiver is part of an agreement between the individual and
the employer that is written in a manner calculated to be understood by
such individual, or by the average individual eligible to participate;

(B) the waiver specifically refers to rights or claims arising
under this chapter;

(C) the individual does not waive rights or claims that may arise
after the date the waiver is executed;

(D) the individual waives rights or claims only in exchange for
consideration in addition to anything of value to which the individual
already is entitled;

(E) the individual is advised in writing to consult with an
attorney prior to executing the agreement;

(F) (i) the individual is given a period of at least 21 days within
which to consider the agreement; or

(ii) if a waiver is requested in connection with an exit incentive
or other employment termination program offered to a group or class of
employees, the individual is given a period of at least 45 days within
which to consider the agreement;

(G) the agreement provides that for a period of at least 7 days
following the execution of such agreement, the individual may revoke the
agreement, and the agreement shall not become effective or enforceable
until the revocation period has expired;

(H) if a waiver is requested in connection with an exit incentive
or other employment termination program offered to a group or class of
employees, the employer (at the commencement of the period specified in
subparagraph (F)) informs the individual in writing in a manner calculated
to be understood by the average individual eligible to participate, as to-

(i) any class, unit, or group of individuals covered by such
program, any eligibility factors for such program, and any time limits
applicable to such program; and

(ii) the job titles and ages of all individuals eligible or
selected for the program, and the ages of all individuals in the same job
classification or organizational unit who are not eligible or selected for
the program.

(2) A waiver in settlement of a charge filed with the Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission, or an action filed in court by the
individual or the individual's representative, alleging age discrimination
of a kind prohibited under section 623 or 633a of this title [section 4
or 15]
may not be considered knowing and voluntary unless at a
minimum-

(A) subparagraphs (A) through (E) of paragraph (1) have been met;
and

(B) the individual is given a reasonable period of time within
which to consider the settlement agreement.

(3) In any dispute that may arise over whether any of the
requirements, conditions, and circumstances set forth in subparagraph (A),
(B), (C), (D), (E), (F), (G), or (H) of paragraph (1), or subparagraph (A)
or (B) of paragraph (2), have been met, the party asserting the validity
of a waiver shall have the burden of proving in a court of competent
jurisdiction that a waiver was knowing and voluntary pursuant to paragraph
(1) or (2).

(4) No waiver agreement may affect the Commission's rights and
responsibilities to enforce this chapter. No waiver may be used to justify
interfering with the protected right of an employee to file a charge or
participate in an investigation or proceeding conducted by the Commission.

NOTICE TO BE POSTED

SEC. 627. [Section 8]

Every employer, employment agency, and labor organization shall post
and keep posted in conspicuous places upon its premises a notice to be
prepared or approved by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
setting forth information as the Commission
deems appropriate to effectuate the purposes of this chapter.

RULES AND REGULATIONS

SEC. 628. [Section 9]

In accordance with the provisions of subchapter II of chapter 5 of
title 5 [United States Code], the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission may issue such rules and regulations as it may consider
necessary or appropriate for carrying out this chapter, and may establish
such reasonable exemptions to and from any or all provisions of this
chapter as it may find necessary and proper in the public interest.

CRIMINAL PENALTIES

SEC. 629. [Section 10]

Whoever shall forcibly resist, oppose, impede, intimidate or interfere
with a duly authorized representative of the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission while it is engaged in the performance of duties under this
chapter shall be punished by a fine of not more than $500 or by
imprisonment for not more than one year, or by both: Provided, however,
That no person shall be imprisoned under this section except when there
has been a prior conviction hereunder.

DEFINITIONS

SEC. 630. [Section 11]

For the purposes of this chapter-

(a) The term ``person'' means one or more individuals, partnerships,
associations, labor organizations, corporations, business trust, legal
representatives, or any organized groups of persons.

(b) The term ``employer'' means a person engaged in an industry affecting
commerce who has twenty or more employees for each working day in each of
twenty or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year:
Provided, That prior to June 30, 1968, employers having fewer than fifty
employees shall not be considered employers. The term also means (1) any
agent of such a person, and (2) a State or political subdivision of a
State and any agency or instrumentality of a State or a political subdivision of a State, and any interstate agency, but such term does not
include the United States, or a corporation wholly owned by the Government
of the United States.

(c) The term ``employment agency'' means any person regularly undertaking
with or without compensation to procure employees for an employer and
includes an agent of such a person; but shall not include an agency of the
United States.

(d) The term ``labor organization'' means a labor organization engaged in
an industry affecting commerce, and any agent of such an organization, and
includes any organization of any kind, any agency, or employee
representation committee, group, association, or plan so engaged in which
employees participate and which exists for the purpose, in whole or in
part, of dealing with employers concerning grievances, labor disputes,
wages, rates of pay, hours, or other terms or conditions of employment,
And any conference, general committee, joint or system board, or joint
council so engaged which is subordinate to a national or international
labor organization.

(e) A labor organization shall be deemed to be engaged in an industry
affecting commerce if (1) it maintains or operates a hiring hall or hiring
office which procures employees for an employer or procures for employees
opportunities to work for an employer, or (2) the number of its members
(or, where it is a labor organization composed of other labor
organizations or their representatives, if the aggregate number of the
members of such other labor organization) is fifty or more prior to July
1, 1968, or twenty-five or more on or after July 1, 1968, and such
labor organization-

(1) is the certified representative of employees under the
provisions of the National Labor Relations Act, as amended [29 U.S.C.
151 et seq.], or the Railway Labor Act, as amended [45 U.S.C. 151
et seq.]; or

(2) although not certified, is a national or international labor
organization or a local labor organization recognized or acting as the
representative of employees of an employer or employers engaged in an
industry affecting commerce; or

(3) has chartered a local labor organization or subsidiary body
which is representing or actively seeking to represent employees of
employers within the meaning of paragraph (1) or (2); or

(4) has been chartered by a labor organization representing or
actively seeking to represent employees within the meaning of paragraph
(1) or (2) as the local or subordinate body through which such employees
may enjoy membership or become affiliated with such labor organization; or

(5) is a conference, general committee, joint or system board, or
joint council subordinate to a national or international labor
organization, which includes a labor organization engaged in an industry
affecting commerce within the meaning of any of the preceding paragraphs
of this subsection.

(f) The term ``employee'' means an individual employed by any employer
except that the term ``employee'' shall not include any person elected to
public office in any State or political subdivision of any State by the
qualified voters thereof, or any person chosen by such officer to be on
such officer's personal staff, or an appointee on the policymaking level
or an immediate adviser with respect to the exercise of the constitutional
or legal powers of the office. The exemption set forth in the preceding
sentence shall not include employees subject to the civil service laws of
a State government, governmental agency, or political subdivision. The
term ``employee'' includes any individual who is a citizen of the United
States employed by an employer in a workplace in a foreign country.

[The exclusion from the term "employee" of any person chosen
by an elected official "to be on such official's personal staff, or
an appointee on the policymaking level or an immediate advisor with
respect to the exercise of the constitutional or legal powers of the
office," remains in section 11(f). However, the Civil Rights Act of
1991 now provides special procedures for such persons who feel they are
victims of age and other types of discrimination prohibited by EEOC
enforced statutes. See section 321 of the Civil Rights Act of
1991.]

(g) The term ``commerce'' means trade, traffic, commerce,
transportation, transmission, or communication among the several States;
or between a State and any place outside thereof; or within the District
of Columbia, or a possession of the United States; or between points in
the same State but through a point outside thereof.

(h) The term ``industry affecting commerce'' means any activity, business,
or industry in commerce or in which a labor dispute would hinder or
obstruct commerce or the free flow of commerce and includes any activity
or industry ``affecting commerce'' within the meaning of the
Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959 [29 U.S.C.
401 et seq.].

(i) The term ``State'' includes a State of the United States, the District
of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, Wake
Island, the Canal Zone, and Outer Continental Shelf lands defined in the
Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act [43 U.S.C. 1331 et seq.].

(j) The term ``firefighter'' means an employee, the duties of whose
position are primarily to perform work directly connected with the control
and extinguishment of fires or the maintenance and use of firefighting
apparatus and equipment, including an employee engaged in this activity
who is transferred to a supervisory or administrative position.

(k) The term ``law enforcement officer'' means an employee, the duties of
whose position are primarily the investigation, apprehension, or detention
of individuals suspected or convicted of offenses against the criminal
laws of a State, including an employee engaged in this activity who is
transferred to a supervisory or administrative position. For the purpose
of this subsection, ``detention'' includes the duties of employees
assigned to guard individuals incarcerated in any penal institution.

(l) The term ``compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of
employment'' encompasses all employee benefits, including such benefits
provided pursuant to a bona fide employee benefit plan.

AGE LIMITATION

SEC. 631. [Section 12]

(a) The prohibitions in this chapter [except the provisions of
section 4(g)] shall be limited to individuals who are at least 40
years of age.

(b) In the case of any personnel action affecting employees or applicants
for employment which is subject to the provisions of section 633a of this
title [section 15], the prohibitions established in section 633a of
this title [section 15] shall be limited to individuals who are at
least 40 years of age.

(c) (1) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prohibit compulsory
retirement of any employee who has attained 65 years of age and who, for
the 2-year period immediately before retirement, is employed in a
bona fide executive or a high policymaking position, if such employee is
entitled to an immediate nonforfeitable annual retirement benefit from a
pension, profit-sharing, savings, or deferred compensation plan, or
any combination of such plans, of the employer of such employee, which
equals, in the aggregate, at least $44,000.

(2) In applying the retirement benefit test of paragraph (1) of
this subsection, if any such retirement benefit is in a form other than a
straight life annuity (with no ancillary benefits), or if employees
contribute to any such plan or make rollover contributions, such benefit
shall be adjusted in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission, after consultation with the Secretary
of the Treasury, so that the benefit is the equivalent of a straight life
annuity (with no ancillary benefits) under a plan to which employees do
not contribute and under which no rollover contributions are made.

(d) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prohibit compulsory
retirement of any employee who has attained 70 years of age, and who is
serving under a contract of unlimited tenure (or similar arrangement
providing for unlimited tenure) at an institution of higher education (as
defined by section 1141(a) of title 20 [section 1201(a) of the Higher
Education Act of 1965]).

ANNUAL REPORT

SEC. 632. [Section 13]

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shall submit annually in
January a report to the Congress covering its activities for the preceding
year and including such information, data and recommendations for further
legislation in connection with the matters covered by this chapter as it
may find advisable. Such report shall contain an evaluation and appraisal
by the Commission of the effect of the minimum and maximum ages
established by this chapter, together with its recommendations to the
Congress. In making such evaluation and appraisal, the Commission shall
take into consideration any changes which may have occurred in the general
age level of the population, the effect of the chapter upon workers not
covered by its provisions, and such other factors as it may deem
pertinent.

FEDERAL-STATE RELATIONSHIP

SEC. 633. [Section 14]

(a) Nothing in this chapter shall affect the jurisdiction of any
agency of any State performing like functions with regard to
discriminatory employment practices on account of age except that upon
commencement of action under this chapter such action shall supersede any
State action.

(b) In the case of an alleged unlawful practice occurring in a State which
has a law prohibiting discrimination in employment because of age and
establishing or authorizing a State authority to grant or seek relief from
such discriminatory practice, no suit may be brought under section 626 of
this title [section 7] before the expiration of sixty days after
proceedings have been commenced under the State law, unless such
proceedings have been earlier terminated: Provided, That such
sixty-day period shall be extended to one hundred and twenty days
during the first year after the effective date of such State law. If any
requirement for the commencement of such proceedings is imposed by a State
authority other than a requirement of the filing of a written and signed
statement of the facts upon which the proceeding is based, the proceeding
shall be deemed to have been commenced for the purposes of this subsection
at the time such statement is sent by registered mail to the appropriate
State authority.

NONDISCRIMINATION ON ACCOUNT OF AGE IN FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
EMPLOYMENT

SEC. 633a. [Section 15]

(a) All personnel actions affecting employees or applicants for
employment who are at least 40 years of age (except personnel actions with
regard to aliens employed outside the limits of the United States) in
military departments as defined in section 102 of title 5 [United
States Code], in executive agencies as defined in section 105 of title
5 [United States Code] (including employees and applicants for
employment who are paid from nonappropriated funds), in the United States
Postal Service and the Postal Rate Commission, in those units in the
government of the District of Columbia having positions in the competitive
service, and in those units of the legislative and judicial branches of
the Federal Government having positions in the competitive service, and in
the Library of Congress shall be made free from any discrimination based
on age.

(b) Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, the Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission is authorized to enforce the provisions of
subsection (a) of this section through appropriate remedies, including
reinstatement or hiring of employees with or without backpay, as will
effectuate the policies of this section. The Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission shall issue such rules, regulations, orders, and instructions
as it deems necessary and appropriate to carry out its responsibilities
under this section. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shall-

(1) be responsible for the review and evaluation of the operation
of all agency programs designed to carry out the policy of this section,
periodically obtaining and publishing (on at least a semiannual basis)
progress reports from each department, agency, or unit referred to in
subsection (a) of this section;

(2) consult with and solicit the recommendations of interested
individuals, groups, and organizations relating to nondiscrimination in
employment on account of age; and

(3) provide for the acceptance and processing of complaints of
discrimination in Federal employment on account of age.

The head of each such department, agency, or unit shall comply with such
rules, regulations, orders, and instructions of the Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission which shall include a provision that an employee or
applicant for employment shall be notified of any final action taken on
any complaint of discrimination filed by him thereunder. Reasonable
exemptions to the provisions of this section may be established by the
Commission but only when the Commission has established a maximum age
requirement on the basis of a determination that age is a bona fide
occupational qualification necessary to the performance of the duties of
the position. With respect to employment in the Library of Congress,
authorities granted in this subsection to the Equal Employment Opportunity
Commission shall be exercised by the Librarian of Congress.

(c) Any person aggrieved may bring a civil action in any Federal district
court of competent jurisdiction for such legal or equitable relief as will
effectuate the purposes of this chapter.

(d) When the individual has not filed a complaint concerning age
discrimination with the Commission, no civil action may be commenced by
any individual under this section until the individual has given the
Commission not less than thirty days' notice of an intent to file such
action. Such notice shall be filed within one hundred and eighty days
after the alleged unlawful practice occurred. Upon receiving a notice of
intent to sue, the Commission shall promptly notify all persons named
therein as prospective defendants in the action and take any appropriate
action to assure the elimination of any unlawful practice.

(e) Nothing contained in this section shall relieve any Government agency
or official of the responsibility to assure nondiscrimination on account
of age in employment as required under any provision of Federal law.

(f) Any personnel action of any department, agency, or other entity
referred to in subsection (a) of this section shall not be subject to, or
affected by, any provision of this chapter, other than the provisions of
section 631(b) of this title [section 12(b)] and the provisions of
this section.

(g) (1) The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shall undertake a
study relating to the effects of the amendments made to this section by
the Age Discrimination in Employment Act Amendments of 1978, and the
effects of section 631(b) of this title [section 12(b)], as added
by the Age Discrimination in Employment Act Amendments of 1978.

(2) The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission shall transmit a
report to the President and to the Congress containing the findings of the
Commission resulting from the study of the Commission under paragraph (1)
of this subsection. Such report shall be transmitted no later than January
1, 1980.

EFFECTIVE DATE

[Section 16 of the ADEA (not reproduced in the U.S. Code)]

This Act shall become effective one hundred and eighty days after
enactment, except (a) that the Secretary of Labor may extend the delay in
effective date of any provision of this Act up to an additional ninety
days thereafter if he finds that such time is necessary in permitting
adjustments to the provisions hereof, and (b) that on or after the date of
enactment the Secretary of Labor [EEOC] is authorized to issue such rules
and regulations as may be necessary to carry out its provisions.]

APPROPRIATIONS

SEC. 634. [Section 17]

There are hereby authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be
necessary to carry out this chapter.

[Approved December 15, 1967]




This page was last modified on January 15, 1997.
Next Steps
Contact a qualified employment discrimination attorney
to make sure your rights are protected.
(e.g., Chicago, IL or 60611)

Help Me Find a Do-It-Yourself Solution