Federal court reverses summary disposition granted to employer in age discrimination claim
In Pierson v. Quad/Graphics Printing Corp., the appellate judges upheld the plaintiff's right to a jury trial on his age discrimination claim. The lower court had granted summary disposition based on the employer's claim that Pierson was terminated as part of a "reduction in force."
The higher court noted there was ample evidence to suggest that the latter explanation was pretextual and that even the employer's explanation of the termination had changed over time. Therefore, Pierson had raised a legitimate claim and there existed a material question of fact to be decided by the jury: was Pierson discriminated against, when he was fired and replaced by a significantly younger individual (age 62 vs. age 47)?