Twitter Can’t Sink Age Bias Suit Over Post-Musk Layoffs

Twitter Can't Sink Age Bias Suit Over Post-Musk Layoffs

Judge Denies Dismissal in Twitter Age Discrimination Case

A California federal judge has declined to dismiss a lawsuit alleging age discrimination at Twitter, now referred to as X Corp., following a series of layoffs after Elon Musk’s acquisition. The decision allows the case, which claims older employees were disproportionately targeted, to progress in the judicial system.

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Detailed Allegations Keep the Case Alive

U.S. District Judge Susan Illston ruled on Thursday that the detailed allegations in the amended complaint of plaintiff John Zeman sufficed to address previous concerns regarding the specificity of his age discrimination claims under both federal and state laws. Zeman, a former senior communications manager, argued that the layoffs disproportionately affected employees over 50, maintaining that this pattern was intentional rather than coincidental.

Twitter Can’t Sink Age Bias Suit Over Post-Musk Layoffs: Comparing Performance and Layoff Impact

Twitter contended that Zeman’s claims lacked merit, suggesting he had not provided comparative performance evaluations to substantiate his allegations. However, Zeman countered this by highlighting that his performance was on par with or better than younger colleagues who were retained. This, he argued, underscored a hurried and biased decision-making process in the layoffs that occurred in November 2022.

Twitter Can’t Sink Age Bias Suit Over Post-Musk Layoffs: Statistical Evidence Presented

Zeman presented compelling statistics: 60% of employees over 50, and 73% over 60, were laid off, compared to 54% of younger counterparts. This data, according to Judge Illston, bolsters Zeman’s age bias allegations sufficiently at this stage of the legal process.

Twitter Can’t Sink Age Bias Suit Over Post-Musk Layoffs: Legal Representations and Future Steps

Shannon Liss-Riordan, representing Zeman, expressed satisfaction with the ruling, looking forward to advancing the case in court. Meanwhile, Twitter’s legal team, led by Eric Meckley and colleagues from Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP, has yet to comment on the decision.