Getting the balance right: when age discrimination is justified

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The Employment Tribunal has provided further guidance on what constitutes a ‘proportionate means’ of achieving a ‘legitimate aim’ when treating an employee or partner differently because of his age.

The facts of Seldon v Clarkson Wright and Jakes (a partnership), an age discrimination case heard in the Supreme Court in January 2012 and remitted back to the Employment Tribunal earlier this year, may involve a situation in which many partnerships and partners find themselves.

In December 2006, Mr Seldon was due to turn 65 and was retired in accordance with the partnership deed. He wished to continue working part time for the respondent firm. When this was refused, he issued proceedings…

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