EEOC Office of Legal Counsel staff members wrote the following informal discussion letter in response to an inquiry from a member of the public. This letter is intended to provide an informal discussion of the noted issue and does not constitute an official opinion of the Commission.
ADEA: Time to Consider/Revoke Waiver Agreement
April 18, 2007
This letter responds to your April 2, 2007 inquiry regarding whether the twenty-one day waiting period for employees to consider an agreement to waive rights under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), at 29 U.S.C. § 626(f)(1)(F)(i), and the seven day allowance for employees to revoke such an agreement after its execution, in § 626(f)(1)(G), may run concurrently. The short answer to this question is no – these time limits must run consecutively. The 21-day period governs the time for employees to consider offers to waive their ADEA rights prior to executing any agreement, while the 7-day time period is a revocation period that only begins after an agreement is made.
Nonetheless, under certain circumstances employers may obtain a release prior to the conclusion of the 21-day consideration period, and thereby immediately begin the 7-day revocation time period. The requirements for such releases are detailed in EEOC’s regulations at 29 C.F.R. § 1625.22(e)(6), which can be found on our web site at www.eeoc.gov. The 7-day revocation period cannot be shortened by agreement or otherwise. 29 C.F.R. § 1625.22(e)(5).
I hope this information is helpful. Please note, however, that this letter is an informal discussion of the question you have raised, and does not constitute an official opinion of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Raymond L. Peeler
Senior Attorney Advisor
This page was last modified on June 4, 2007.
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