Afraid of losing my job due to age

I am 63 years old and have been an employee at a hospital UMASS Memorial Medical
Center Worcester,Ma I have worked there for 17 years as of October 1,2017 they
are switching to a new billing system and we were told all Supervisors need to
re-apply for jobs can they do this? Concerns about my Pension and existing
benefits if I apply as a new employee do I lose all my benefits I am fully vested
in the pension plan…There is talk all sick time in other banks besides earned
time will be lost

Asked on June 25, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

All employment is employment at will (uness you have a written employment contract guarantying the terms of your employment): that means an employer could simply terminate you at any time, for any reason--and so could also require you to re-apply for your job, and that is perfectly legal. As to what happens to your various benefits if you do reapply and are accepted: to a large extent, that is up to your employer. Employers have considerable discretion to set, change, revise benefits. There are limits to this discretion however: for example, the vested portion of a pension plan (i.e. money in the plan which has vested with you) generally remains with the employee and cannot be taken away. There is no way to simply answer this part of the question in advance, since the answer depends on exactly what changes, if any, they make: if you retain your job but they do take away or change benefits, speak to an employment law attorney in detail about the specifics of the changes, to understand your rights.


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