Labor and Employment Law


 

The firm’s Labor and Employment Law Practice Group represents and advises businesses of all sizes, from the small business start-up to the Fortune 500 company. Our lawyers are experienced in virtually all areas of labor and employment law and our approach to client counseling is proactive. We offer compliance and practice appraisals and ongoing training to help each client create a “best practices” employment environment for its business. We believe that the first line of defense is to avoid employee misunderstandings that can lead to legal claims. On the other hand, when the need arises, our attorneys offer broad experience litigating a variety of employment disputes before administrative agencies and in state and federal courts.


Services provided by our Labor and Employment Law Practice Group include the following:


Employment Practice Appraisals

The employment audit is a natural starting point for our representation of management clients in labor and employment matters. The purpose of the audit is to identify compliance gaps and liability risks in the employment environment. We will then work with you to fashion sensible and cost-effective improvements. Employment law is rapidly evolving. Therefore, we also monitor changes in the law to help our clients remain compliant.


Employment Contracts / Severance Agreements

Whether your objectives include attracting new leadership, retaining current talent, protecting competitive advantage, setting an employment dispute, or "right sizing" your work force, we can design employment contracts or severance agreements that will accomplish your objectives and provide maximum protection for the company. Special attention is given to compliance with the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act.


Handbook, Policy, and Procedure Drafting

We draft and update handbooks, policies, and procedures to comply with all applicable federal and state laws.


Compliance Counseling

Our attorneys routinely help clients with troublesome hiring, discipline, and firing issues. We provide advice and counsel on, among other things, EEO law, the Americans With Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Act, wage and hour matters, occupational safety and health law, COBRA, HIPAA, and the WARN Act.


Training

Our attorneys help design, implement, and update employee training programs to avoid the legal pitfalls that can arise in the employment environment. Through carefully focused training programs, we can offer practical tools to maintain an environment that is professional, productive, and conducive to achieving business objectives.


Defending Regulatory Enforcement Proceedings

We can manage your workers’ compensation program and defend you before the Industrial Commission. We also advise and defend clients that are faced with inappropriate unemployment compensation claims. Firm attorneys defend companies embroiled in regulatory investigations and enforcement proceedings by OSHA, the Department of Labor, and other regulatory bodies.


Investigating and Litigating Employment Disputes

Clients frequently need assistance with internal investigations of alleged employment misconduct, including discrimination and sexual harassment claims. We are involved in litigating a wide variety of employment claims before administrative agencies and in state and federal courts. For example, we have defended clients against claims of discrimination based upon race, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, and sexual harassment. Firm attorneys have litigated trade secret, covenant not to compete, and wrongful discharge disputes for clients ranging from multi-billion dollar international companies to local, closely-held businesses. Our attorneys are also experienced in alternative dispute resolution in the employment context, including arbitration and mediation.


Management-Union Relations

We advise clients as to their rights and duties under the federal and state labor laws with respect to labor organizing, bargaining, and labor-management relations. Our attorneys have experience representing clients before the National Labor Relations Board. We are also experienced in handling labor arbitrations.


Collective Bargaining

If a union represents your employees, our attorneys can help in the collective bargaining process. After that process is complete, we can help you implement the agreement.



ALTERNATIVE FEE OPTIONS

While we typically bill for our services based upon an hourly rate, SS+D’s Labor and Employment Law Practice Group can work with you to establish sensible alternative fee arrangements, whenever appropriate to the nature and amount of services being provided. For example, SS+D’s Labor and Employment Law Practice Group can bill a flat monthly rate for many of the services we offer. We will provide an engagement letter, which will clearly set forth which services are, and which services are not, included in the flat rate. When utilizing the more traditional hourly rates, such rates will usually vary depending upon the individuals performing the services.

 

 
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