If I am an “employee at will” and my employer is singling me out for a new pay plan that will reflect a 15% pay cut, do I have to sign?

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If I am an “employee at will” and my employer is singling me out for a new pay plan that will reflect a 15% pay cut, do I have to sign?

If I don’t sign the pay plan and I am terminated, will I be eligible for unemployment? I feel that my younger age is the reason for the pay cut, and my duties at work have just increased. I have not called in sick in over 3+ years and am very rarely granted a lunch break. I feel that I am being taken advantage of.

Asked on March 20, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Massachusetts

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, employees are allowed to "single out" employees for different or worse treatment, so long as they are not discriminating against a specifically protected category. And, unfortunately, while the law prohibits discrimination against those over 40 (i.e. an employer can't treat older workers worse than younger), there is no protection for younger workers--an employer may legally discriminate against someone because of their youth or relative youth. From what you write, it appears that this is therefore legal.


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