European Employment Law Cases

Case Reports

2017/1 Early retirement pension cannot justify age discrimination (AU)

Keywords Age discrimination
Authors Peter C. Schöffmann en Andreas Tinhofer
Author's information

303146 Peter C. Schöffmann
Peter C. Schöffmann and Andreas Tinhofer are respectively an associate and partner at MOSATI Rechtsanwälte, www.mosati.at.

303149 Andreas Tinhofer
Peter C. Schöffmann and Andreas Tinhofer are respectively an associate and partner at MOSATI Rechtsanwälte, www.mosati.at.
  • Abstract

      The Austrian Supreme Court has held that the selection of employees for redundancy because of their entitlement to an early retirement pension constitutes unfair dismissal on grounds of direct age discrimination. Although it was accepted that individual employers (here the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation) can pursue a legitimate aim within the meaning of Article 6(1) of Directive 2000/78/EC, the means to achieve that aim were not considered appropriate and necessary. The Court stressed that a balance must be struck between the interests of older and younger employees, taking into account that it is generally easier for younger employees to find a new job. In the case at hand, however, the employer had not managed to show that its redundancy selection programme met that requirement.

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