The California Supreme Court ruled that "an age-discrimination lawsuit filed against Google should proceed to trial," potentially paving the way for more lawsuits that previously were blocked under a theory that crude and possibly discriminatory workplace comments were merely "stray remarks." The ruling now makes it harder for companies in California to defeat discrimination claims at an early stage, and employees are now more likely to get their claims in front of a jury, attorneys specializing in employment law.
"Brian Reid, a senior executive at Google between 2002 and 2004, alleged in a 2004 lawsuit when he was 54 years old that other executives at the company criticized his age and he was told he wasn't a "cultural fit" at the company at the time of his termination."
A Google spokesman, based in Mountain View, Calif., said Mr. Reid "was not laid off based on his age" and looks forward to "demonstrating in court the legitimate, nondiscriminatory reasons why Mr. Reid was let go."
Google had argued that Mr. Reid was fired due to poor performance and job elimination.