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TexLaw, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 4430
Experience:  Contracts, Wrongful termination and discrimination
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I have been a salaried manager of a utility company for 18

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I have been a salaried manager of a utility company for 18 years and I'm 63 years old. The new HR director is changing the company policy to make all exempt employees AT WILL. If when I was hired, this was not in place, am I subject to the new policy? Also, the new Director has been removing duties from my job transferring them to other younger employees. I have outstanding evaluations and have given no indication of retirement which is several years off. She will not grant me "comp time" when she instructed me to give one of subordinates time off for working extra hours. Also, she recently admitted that she was "carving me out of a process." One of my major responsibilities went to a male supervisor who had to be sent to school to learn what was needed to be done. I was never offered schooling in this area that I had worked successfully for seven years, and I was not paid the salary this man was started out at $125,000. I was given the excuse the work just did not belong in my area. I was recently told I have my "fingers in too many places in the company." As you can imagine the CEO changed 8 years ago and he brought his own trusted directors in. I was demoted but have continued to perform successfully. Obviously I'm not one of the favorites. In a confidential conversation the CFO admitted that the HR director was trying to get rid of all the long term employees. Do I have any recourse in these situations?

Thank you for your question. In Alaska, an employee (regardless of whether they are salaried or paid by the hour) is an at will employee unless there is a specific employment agreement providing otherwise.

You say that the company policy was to make all employees at will, did you have a written contract with the company prior to this change? If not,how were you not already at will?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Some years ago while a Director myself under a different CEO, I signed something, but cannot remember exactly the content. I remember stating when I interviewed that "this is a place I would like to retire from."

It is important to determine whether you have an employment contract, as this would stop the company from terminating you without cause.

Also, there is the smack of age discrimination in what the company is doing. The company cannot simply fire everyone who has been with the company for a long period of time without a legitimate reason. Otherwise, this would likely violate the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which prohibits employers from taking an adverse employment action based on age.

If such a move is made against you, you can challenge it under the ADEA by filing a claim with the local Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. You must file this claim and "exhaust administrative remedies" before you can file a lawsuit, unless you have an employment contract on which you could base a breach of contract claim.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Please also kindly consider rating my answer positively so that I am compensated by the website for my work on your question. Rating does not cause an additional charge and will not prevent us from further working together on your questions.

Best Regards,
TexLaw and 6 other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
thank you. I am documenting the HR directors statements and actions toward me.