Maple v. Knauf Insulation GmbH

On Septemeber 15, 2011, an Indiana United States District Court found that a reasonable jury could find that employee, a 63-year old employee at Knauf GmbH (“Knauf”), a German company, was terminated because of his age and his claims under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA).

The ADEA makes it illegal for an employer to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual or otherwise discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual’s age.” (29 U.S.C. § 623(a)(1)).

The case arises out of a the termination of employee for smoking on company property, which is only permitted in certain areas. Knauf had two relevant policies reagarding smoking on company property: 1) Knauf employees caught smoking in non-warehouse areas are subject to a four-step, progressive disciplinary procedure; and 2) Immediate termination for smoking in warehouse areas due to high concentrations of flammable materials. Knauf claimed srtict complaince to these policies.

Employee claims the he was smoking in the Old Warehouse area. There is a question of fact regarding whether or not Mr ...

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