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Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Labor and employment disputes (including collective actions): plaintiff
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

  1. 1
    • David Borgen - Goldstein, Borgen, Dardarian & Ho
    • Eve Cervantez - Altshuler Berzon
    • James Finberg - Altshuler Berzon
    • Adam Klein - Outten & Golden LLP
    • David Lowe - Rudy, Exelrod, Zieff & Lowe, LLP
    • Michael Rubin - Altshuler Berzon

Altshuler Berzon has historically serviced employees, labor federations and local and international labor unions, among other clients. Class actions and appeals are core strengths, particularly cases involving discrimination and wage and hours issues. The San Francisco firm fields skilled attorneys, including Michael Rubin, Eve Cervantez, James Finberg, Peder Thoreen and Eileen Goldsmith. Barbara Chisholm and Rubin were part of the team that represented restaurant employees filing four California state law class actions against McDonald’s, with three cases alleging that the chain acts as a joint employer and was responsible for numerous violations, including unpaid overtime, failure to provide rest breaks, and accurate wage statements. In the landmark case Tristan Broussard v First Loan Tower LLC, the firm acted for a transgender man who was fired after his former employer allegedly asked him to sign a document stating that his preference for dressing as a man went against company policy; the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) was involved in the matter. Peter Nussbaum retired from the partnership in 2015.

At Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP, Kelly Dermody heads the practice from San Francisco and works alongside Anne Shaver, an expert in class and individual actions involving gender discrimination, especially those in Silicon Valley; wage and hour expert Daniel Hutchinson is highly regarded, as is newly promoted partner Lin Chan. New York’s Rachel Geman is an authority in whistleblower and employment discrimination matters. Dermody, whose practice includes multi and single plaintiff cases, recently acted for clients bringing class action litigation against companies including Pixar, Adobe and Google for their alleged involvement in a conspiracy to suppress the wages of technical employees. Another highlight was handling Lusardi v McHugh, which led to the EEOC reversing a lower agency decision surrounding Title VII and transgender discrimination, including the use of restroom facilities. The group is currently serving as co-counsel with Outten & Golden LLP in a gender discrimination class action against Goldman Sachs.

Outten & Golden LLP distributes work between nine employment-focused groups, including the whistleblower and retaliation, financial services and Worker Adjustment Retraining and Notification Act practices. In New York, Adam Klein, Rachel Bien and Justin Swartz head the class and collective actions group, while Wendi Lazar, Laurence Moy and managing partner Wayne Outten lead the individual practice; Cara Greene, Kathleen Peratis and Tammy Marzigliano are also recommended. Alongside Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP’s Seattle and San Francisco offices, the firm filed a gender discrimination class action against Microsoft on behalf of former and current female technical professionals alleging that the company’s policies discriminate against them. In Lee v The Hertz Corporation et al, the group assessed whether criminal background checks conducted by Hertz and SterlingBackcheck (formerly Sterling Infosystems) on job applicants violate federal law. Jahan Sagafi manages the San Francisco office, which hired Jennifer Schwartz from independent practice; Lori Deem is the main contact in Chicago. The New York office promoted Molly Brooks, Katherine Blostein and Juno Turner to partner, and hired Darnley Stewart from Giskan Solotaroff & Anderson LLP as of counsel.

Oakland-based Goldstein, Borgen, Dardarian & Ho advises on national class and collective actions in the core areas of discrimination, wage and hour violations, and disability access under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Laura Ho, Andrew Lee and newly promoted partner William Jhaveri-Weeks represented drivers in two putative class actions against Uber relating to the company’s use of criminal background checks. David Borgen became of counsel and is noted for enforcing minimum wage and overtime rights under the FLSA and California Labor Code, while James Kan’s expertise includes executive and severance negotiations. Jhaveri-Weeks is a new recruit from Bryan Schwartz Law.

San Francisco-based employment specialist Rudy, Exelrod, Zieff & Lowe, LLP is a wage and hour class action pioneer. Of counsel Mark Rudy is commended for his mediation skills and recently helped a judge grant preliminary approval to a $7.4m settlement between CVS Pharmacy and a class of over 1,000 pharmacists who brought action against the company for alleged unpaid overtime and working more than six consecutive days. Of counsel Alan Exelrod represented Ellen Pao in a major gender discrimination case against Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers; despite Pao dropping her appeal, the case has sparked debate about the number of women working in venture capital and Silicon Valley. Of counsel Steven Zieff, John Mullan, managing partner David Lowe and Chaya Mandelbaum are additional contacts.

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