Age discrimination suit against Kelley Drye & Warren reopens retirement debate

July 22, 2010 Most US law firms have a policy to encourage older partners to retire. They justify the rules on the basis that they make way for younger partners to develop and to ensure that partners with decreasing productivity are taken out of the game at the right time.

But increasing numbers of partners who wish to keep working beyond the age-limit are challenging the rules. Eugene D'Ablemont is a case in point: when he turned 70 he was stripped of his equity stake in New York firm Kelley Drye & Warren, where he had worked for four decades.

Earlier this year the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission initiated proceedings against Kelley Drye & Warren on Mr. D'Ablemont's behalf, claiming that the firm is in violation of age-discrimination laws.


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