Kelley Drye & Warren fought back Monday against an age discrimination suit by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission stemming from the firm’s policy of stripping partners of their equity at age 70.

The EEOC sued Kelley Drye in January on behalf of Eugene T. D’Ablemont, a 79-year-old lawyer who complained the firm’s compensation practices discriminated against senior partners. But Kelley Drye in its answer contended that D’Ablemont was a partner, not an employee, and thus not entitled to federal employee protections.

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