Muddling The RFOA Defense With New ADEA Regulations

Law360, New York (April 27, 2012, 1:30 PM EDT) -- On March 30, 2012, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued the final rule to amend its Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) regulations concerning the "reasonable factors other than age" (RFOA) defense to disparate-impact claims. The revised EEOC regulations take effect on April 30, 2012.

In its 2005 ruling in Smith v. City of Jackson, 544 U.S. 228, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the ADEA, like Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, reaches disparate-impact claims. Because legitimate employment criteria like...
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