A Supreme Court ruling has indicated bosses retain some power to force retirement at age 65 despite legislation being introduced banning the practice.
City law firm partner Leslie Seldon brought the case against his former employer, Clarkson Wright and Jakes, after was his request to continue working past the age of 65 was rejected.
He made the request before the default retirement age was scrapped in October last year.
The law firm told him there was "no sufficient business need" for him to stay on. He then started an age discrimination claim which ended up in the Supreme Court.
The case was unanimously rejected by judges in the country's highest court of law, after a series of appeals.
Seldon had argued the partners' decision to force him out was clear age discrimination. But the court said making sure there was "inter-generational fairness" was in line with accepted legitimate aims in employment law.
This position is backed by European Court of Justice rulings on the issue.
The decision added: "However, all businesses will now have to give careful consideration to what, if any, mandatory retirement rules can be justified in their particular business."
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