Employment Counseling

Overview

"They're savvy with business issues and understand what we need commercially, keeping us abreast of new developments and their implications."

– Chambers USA 2012

Clients value BakerHostetler’s counsel on workplace matters in large part because we do not focus exclusively on employment law.

While our employment lawyers have deep experience in the applicable federal, state and local employment laws, they also have access to the collective experience of more than 900 lawyers who concentrate their practices in a full spectrum of other areas of law that affect employee relations. For instance, an issue of executive compensation may require the input of a tax lawyer. A whistleblowing claim at a public company may lead us to tap our securities team. Complaints about workplace conditions may involve environmental issues. We have the requisite experience on call.

Our employment advisors are also employment litigators. This dual perspective allows us to provide advice that seeks first to avoid litigation but that also lays the groundwork for an effective defense if litigation is filed. Many of our team members have experience as in-house counsel with public and private companies and many have worked for the regulatory agencies that enforce and interpret workplace laws. We advise clients on all aspects of employment law and employment-related statutes, from ADA to WARN (please see "Areas of Counsel" below for a sample listing of matters we regularly handle).

We view our clients as business partners and we tailor our advice to their business needs. We take a proactive approach, helping our clients not only avoid litigation and enforcement but also develop policies that will meet their business objectives. When working to resolve a workplace conflict or disciplinary matter, we focus our counsel not only on the client's decision itself, but on how to convey that decision to employees in ways that aim to minimize resentment and humiliation.

Our advising goes beyond merely reciting the law and presenting a range of options. Although we believe that effective advice includes helping clients to weigh alternative approaches, we don't hesitate to offer a firm recommendation as to which alternative is most likely to help a client achieve its objectives.

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Keeping Our Clients Informed
"BakerHostetler lawyers are practical, experienced, and strategic. They are fantastic and get consistent results for our company!"– This comment appears on the U.S. News & Best Lawyers Best Law Firm website at bestlawfirms.usnews.com

We keep our clients updated on the latest developments in employment law and how those developments affect their organizations. Through the issuance of email Employment Alerts and posting of developments on our Employment Class Action and Employment Law Spotlight blogs, we provide not only updates but recommendations and bottom line takeaways as well.

We regularly provide clients with training on a wide range of employment matters, tailoring our presentations as the client requires to different audiences, from attorneys to human resources personnel, to managers/supervisors, to rank-and-file employees, and customizing the scope and purpose. Examples of recent presentations include:

  • Preventing Harassment in the Workplace
  • Reasonable Accommodation and Leave Management
  • Managing Employee Medical Issues
  • ADA in the Workplace
  • Social Media Best Practices
  • Navigating through the FMLA, ADA and Workers’ Compensation
  • Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act
  • Proper Classification under the FLSA
  • Conducting Internal Investigations
  • Protection of Corporate Assets
  • National Labor Relations Board Developments
  • Collective Bargaining Agreement Administration and Interpretation

Our team offers webinars, educational programs and on-site presentations. We are flexible in our approach, and we aim to ensure that our clients have the information they need to stay informed on the latest developments in employment law.

Ongoing Compliance Counsel

"BakerHostetler has the depth within their organization to successfully achieve the desired results of their clients and to protect their interests."– This comment appears on the U.S. News & Best Lawyers Best Law Firm website at bestlawfirms.usnews.com

Employment law compliance is a moving target. Regulations change. EEOC enforcement priorities change. Legal interpretations change. On an ongoing basis, we can help clients assess their readiness on issues such as the following:

  • Have you updated your social media, electronic communications, and confidentiality policies to reflect the latest NLRB decisions, which apply even in a non-union environment?
  • Have you updated your background check policies and practices to comply with the EEOC’s most recent guidance?
  • Have you updated your FMLA policy to reflect the expanded military caregiver and qualifying exigency leave entitlements?
  • Have you reviewed your employees’ exempt/non-exempt classifications in light of developing FLSA case law?
  • Have you considered implementing arbitration agreements with employees to take advantage of recent rulings that allow employers to avoid courtroom litigation and class action litigation?
  • Does your unpaid internship program pass muster under the U.S. Department of Labor guidelines and recent court decisions?

Areas of Counsel

"High degree of responsiveness; a well-run team. Their major strength is institutional knowledge of the industry coupled with prompt personal service at rates that are much lower than comparable big city national firms."– Chambers & Partners interviewee

We advise clients on all aspects of employment law and employment-related statutes. Below is a sample list of the areas of counsel we handle for our clients.

  • Hiring and Firing
  • Employee Discipline
  • Leaves of Absence and Employee Medical Issues
  • Reasonable Accommodation Obligations
  • Return to Work Obligations
  • Employee Medication and Impairment Issues
  • Managing Performance Problems
  • Employee Medical Examinations
  • Background Checks
  • Immigration
  • Meal and Rest Breaks
  • Employee Compensation and Exempt / Non-Exempt Classification Issues
  • Employee / Independent Contractor Classification Issues
  • Use of Temporary and Staffing Agency Workers
  • Reductions in Force (RIF)
  • Severance Agreements
  • Noncompetition / Nonsolicitation Agreements / Trade Secrets
  • Confidentiality Agreements
  • Discrimination and Retaliation Statutes, including Title VII, ADA, ADEA
  • Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
  • Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
  • Federal and State Whistleblower Statutes
  • Sarbanes-Oxley Act
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
  • Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN)
  • Older Worker Benefit Protection Act (OWBPA)
  • Affirmative Action and OFCCP Compliance

Professionals

Name Title Office Email
Partner Orlando
Partner Washington, D.C.
Partner Columbus
Partner Cleveland
Partner Atlanta
Associate Columbus
Partner New York
Of Counsel Houston
Partner Columbus
Counsel Columbus
Partner Columbus
Associate Columbus
Staff Attorney Cincinnati
Partner Cleveland
Associate Columbus
Partner Washington, D.C.
Associate Columbus
Partner Cincinnati
Partner Washington, D.C.
Counsel Orlando
Partner Cleveland
Partner Columbus
Partner Denver
Partner Cincinnati
Associate Washington, D.C.
Associate Orlando
Partner Orlando
Partner Orlando
Associate Columbus
Partner Houston
Partner Cleveland
Partner New York
Partner Los Angeles
Counsel Denver
Associate Orlando
Counsel Orlando
Partner Cleveland
Partner Orlando
Associate New York
Partner Chicago
Partner New York
Partner Houston
Partner Houston
Partner New York
Partner Cleveland
Partner Columbus
Counsel Philadelphia
Associate Los Angeles

Recognition

  • Chambers USA: Labor & Employment
    • Florida (2007 to 2017)
    • Ohio: Band 1 (2007 to 2017)
    • Texas (2014 to 2017)
    • Recognized Practitioner in California (2017)
    • Recognized Practitioner in the District of Columbia (2017)
  • BTI Client Service 30: BakerHostetler advanced 19 positions to #9 (2016)
  • U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” (2017)
    • Employment Law - Management: National Tier 1
  • Corporate Counsel® and The American Lawyer magazines "Go-to Law Firm” for Labor & Employment by general counsel (2013) 
  • Workforce Management Magazine: Top Employment Law Firms
  • The Lawdragon/Human Resource Executive list of the Nation's Top Employment Attorneys includes three members of the team in their Top 100 list, with one additional attorney named among the nation's top 20 labor lawyers.
  • Florida Trend's “Legal Elite"
  • Numerous partners have been certified as employment law specialists by their respective state bar associations.

News

News

Key Contacts

Blog

In The Blogs

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Employment Class Action Blog
Second Circuit Affirms Summary Judgment in Putative Internship Class
December 12, 2017
Four years ago, a wave of cases involving unpaid internships looked to be the next “big thing.” As those cases sputtered, however, and employers reduced or eliminated internships, the flood of anticipated litigation never fully...
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Employment Class Action Blog
New Bill Would Outlaw Mandatory Arbitration Agreements For Sex Discrimination Disputes – Is A Poorly Constructed Bill The Right Cure For The Disease?
December 8, 2017
Prior bills have attempted, unsuccessfully, to eliminate individual arbitration as a means to resolve employment disputes. Senator Al Franken introduced several bills, starting in 2009, to forbid pre-dispute mandatory arbitration...
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Employment Class Action Blog
The Ninth Circuit Rules That both an Arbitrator and a Trial Court May Have a Role in a Case with Individual and PAGA Claims
November 29, 2017
Employers, plaintiffs, and courts continue to grapple with the difficult issue of the interplay between the California Private Attorneys General Act (“PAGA”) and arbitration agreements. We’ve addressed these issues several times on this...
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Employment Law Spotlight
New York City Expands Paid Sick Leave Law With Creation Of ‘Safe Time’
November 13, 2017
On Monday, Nov. 6, newly re-elected Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law “Intro. 1313-A,” a bill that amends and expands the coverage of New York City’s paid sick leave law. The bill renames the sick leave law as the “Earned Safe and Sick...
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Employment Class Action Blog
Court Grants Summary Judgment For Employer In Tip Credit Collective Action
November 9, 2017
What? I Need a Valid Claim to Represent a Class?! With scores of collective actions being filed every month and many courts willing to issue conditional certification on even very weak claims, it’s easy to forget that, yes, it’s important...
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