Firm Settles Suit over Mandatory Retirement Policy

May 24, 2011 ( - Asian World of Martial Arts, Inc., a mail and retail distributor of martial arts supplies based in Philadelphia, will pay $100,000 and provide other relief to settle a federal age discrimination lawsuit.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that it charged that Asian World of Martial Arts, Inc. fired its controller, Morris Pashko, because of his age, 74, pursuant to a newly implemented retirement policy which mandated that all employees age 67 and over be terminated.   

The announcement explained that the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) protects individuals who are 40 years of age or older from employment discrimination based on age.  That protection includes, with narrow exceptions not applicable in this case, prohibiting mandatory retirement based on age.   

In addition to the $100,000 in monetary relief, the two-year consent decree resolving the lawsuit contains other important relief, including enjoining Asian World of Martial Arts from further engaging in age discrimination or retaliation and requiring the company to provide annual training on the ADEA and to post a notice on the settlement.   

The company no longer has a mandatory retirement policy.