We provide clients with proactive advice designed to prevent time-consuming and costly litigation. When litigation cannot be avoided, we offer efficient, responsive and cost-effective representation in the state and federal courts in Massachusetts, as well as agencies like the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Our experience includes trials (both jury and nonjury) and hearings before courts and administrative agencies, as well as appeals before state and federal appellate courts
Discrimination, harassment and wrongful termination
We have handled hundreds of cases before the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, anti-discrimination agencies in Massachusetts and other states, Massachusetts state courts, and federal courts. We have dealt with claims of discrimination based on disability, age, race, sex, national origin, and sexual preference, as well as sexual harassment. While most cases are resolved or dismissed before trial, we have substantial experience trying cases before courts and administrative agencies, as well as in arbitration.
Wage and hour claims
Wage and hour claims under state and federal overtime and wage payment laws have become common, due to the potential for multiple damages, attorneys’ fees awards, and class action certification. We have handled many such claims, both in state and federal court and before administrative agencies, including the United States Department of Labor and the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General.
We often help our clients solve problems and avoid litigation in areas such as state and federal wage and hour laws; the Americans with Disabilities Act; the Family and Medical Leave Act; reasonable accommodation to disabled individuals; collective bargaining; employment contracts; non-competition agreements; termination; discipline; and severance.
We represent companies and executives in drafting and negotiating the terms of employment agreements. We have also advised clients regarding the impact of employment contracts in the context of employment termination.
Non-competition and trade secrets
To protect intellectual property, confidential information and trade secrets, we draft noncompetition and confidential information agreements. We also provide advice and counsel about the enforcement of noncompetes to companies who are considering hiring a candidate or individuals who are changing jobs or starting a business. We also litigate claims when such agreements are breached, most often in the context of seeking or defending against injunctive relief and restraining orders.
We often draft severance agreements and negotiate terms of severance on behalf of employers and employees.
Employment handbooks and policies
We draft and review employment handbook and policies. There are good reasons for every company to have a handbook, and “one size fits all” forms are not your best option. If you have a handbook, it makes sense to have it reviewed on a regular basis, to update policies such as social media, internet and computer use, leaves of absence and drug and alcohol use.
We have handled collective bargaining negotiations, provided advice regarding grievances and other disputes, and tried cases in arbitration.