Employment Litigation

We have an extensive track record of success representing employers in the defense of claims of all forms of discrimination, sexual harassment and retaliation, wrongful termination, wage and hour and other workplace matters. We also have extensive experience litigating non-disclosure, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, including efforts to obtain or prevent the entry of preliminary and permanent injunctions. We appear regularly in state and federal courts and before the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Ashlyn Dowd featured in Community Legal Aid

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PODCAST: Lauren Sparks discusses Analysis of the Supreme Court Title VII Ruling

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Rich Van Nostrand quoted in Law360, "Mass. Noncompete Law Overhaul Not As Strict As It Seems"

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Telegram's One on One with Employment Attorney Jonathan Sigel

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Jonathan Sigel interviewed by NECN - How to Prepare for Mass Equity Pay Law

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Federal Appeals Court Halts Implementation of NLRB Employees' Rights Posting

April 18, 2012[ read full story ]

New Limits on Employer Access To and Use Of Criminal Records Take Effect on May 4, 2012

March 30, 2012[ read full story ]

Attorney General Announces $2.8 Million Settlement with 3 Companies that Violated Massachusetts Prevailing Wage and Misclassification Laws

March 22, 2012[ read full story ]

Supreme Judicial Court Issues Much Anticipated Quinn Bill Decision

March 8, 2012[ read full story ]

Transgender Discrimination Protection

February 10, 2012[ read full story ]

Massachusetts Court Upholds Students' Suspensions for Hazing Incident

January 30, 2012[ read full story ]

Principal and Teacher Who Exchanged Intimate E-Mails May Proceed with Invasion of Privacy Claim Against Employer

January 25, 2012[ read full story ]

Addiction in the Workplace Forum: Bob Kilroy to serve on panel

06/12/2018[ read full story ]

Representative Matters

  • Successfully defended an office solutions company in the U.S. District Court against a race discrimination claim brought by a regional sales manager. The plaintiff had rejected a settlement offer of several hundred thousand dollars before proceeding to trial
  • Obtained a high-seven-figure award for our minority shareholder client following a jury-waived trial for "freeze-out" in Worcester Superior Court. This was on of the few cases in which the Court ordered the repurchase of a minority shareholder's stock interest in the company at a percentage of the company value without any discount for marketability or minority interest
  • Successfully defended an automobile dealership and leasing company in Middlesex Superior Court against an age discrimination claim brought by a former sales manager
  • Secured preliminary and permanent injunctions in the Business Litigation Session of the Suffolk Superior Court on behalf of a nano-particulate business against a former chief chemist for trade secret misappropriation
  • Successfully defended a warehouse and bulk supplier in Bristol Superior Court in separate age discrimination and workers' compensation claims brought by a driver and a warehouse worker, respectively
  • Successfully defended an accounting firm against a pregnancy discrimination claim brought by an accountant in Worcester Superior Court
  • Obtained a summary judgment in favor of our accounting firm client in a disability discrimination claim in the U.S. District Court. On appeal, dismissal was affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • Obtained a summary judgment in favor of our aerospace manufacturing client in a race discrimination claim in the U.S. District Court. The plaintiff's appeal was dismissed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • Obtained enforcement of a non-competition agreement on behalf of an educational software company, resulting in the removal of a former executive from a competitor's workforce and the recoupment of attorneys' fees
  • Successfully defended multiple executives facing numerous counts of discrimination, wrongful termination and whistleblower retaliation in federal court. The case was won with an initial motion to dismiss prior to discovery
  • Successfully defended a municipality facing breach-of-contract claims in federal court following termination of an employee's contract for poor performance. The case was won prior to summary judgment based on admissions by the plaintiff at her deposition
  • Successfully defended a major medical institution facing breach-of-contract claims, intentional interference with contractual relations and defamation in federal court. The case was won with an initial motion to dismiss prior to discovery
  • Successfully defended a service provider and its executives against age discrimination claims. The case was won based on admissions obtained at the plaintiff's deposition

Don’t Delay: MA Employers Are Now Strictly Liable for Three Times the Amount of Wages for Late Payments With No Safe Harbor for Paying in Full Prior to Suit!

Under the Massachusetts Wage Act (the “Wage Act”), if an employee voluntarily quits their employment, the employer must pay the employee their final wages, including any earned, unused vacation pay, on the employer’s next regular pay day. However, when an employee …

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The Times They Keep A-Changing: The New Illinois Restrictions on the Use of Non-Compete and Non-Solicit Agreements

The state-by-state non-compete reform movement keeps rolling – this time in the state of Illinois.  Effective January 1, 2022, the Illinois Freedom to Work Act has dramatically changed the landscape for employers in that state who desire to use non-compete …

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OSHA Withdraws COVID-19 ETS, But Signals That It Is Moving Forward with Final Rule

On January 25, 2022, OSHA announced the withdrawal COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (the “ETS”). In the announcement, OSHA stated that although it “is withdrawing the [ETS] as an enforceable emergency temporary standard, [it] is not withdrawing the …

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Supreme Court Stays OSHA’s COVID ETS

The OSHA COVID ETS is once again stayed. On January 13, 2022, the United States Supreme Court stayed OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard which required that employers with 100+ employees require employees to either (a) become vaccinated against COVID-19; or (b) …

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The District of Columbia’s Aggressive Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Likely to Take Effect in 2022

In December 2020, the District of Columbia Council passed and in January 2021, Mayor Muriel Bowser signed legislation entitled the Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Amendment Act of 2020 (the “DC Act”).  While the effective date of the Act was delayed …

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Don’t Forget! Minimum Wage Rates in Massachusetts Increase, Effective January 1, 2022

The minimum wage in Massachusetts will increase from $13.50 to $14.25 an hour, effective January 1, 2022. In addition, the minimum wage for tipped employees who make more than $20/month in tips will increase from $5.55/hour to $6.15/hour. Employers may …

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CDC Shortens COVID-19 Related Isolation and Quarantine Period, and Distinguishes Between Vaccinated Individuals With/Without Booster

On December 27, 2021, the CDC issued updated guidance which significantly shortens the periods of isolation and quarantine it recommends for COVID-related diagnosis and/or exposure. Specifically, the CDC now recommends that individuals who test positive for COVID-19 (regardless of vaccination …

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Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Adopts FLSA’s Joint Employer Test

Jonathan R. Sigel and Ashlyn E. Dowd On December 13, 2021, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) considered whether the so-called “ABC Test” set forth in M.G.L.c. 149, §148B (“Section 148B”) should be applied to determine whether an entity is …

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OSHA Exercising Discretion in Enforcing the ETS Until January 10

As posted here, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals lifted the stay of the Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (the “ETS”) issued by OSHA. The Department of Labor announced on Saturday, December 18 that OSHA is exercising enforcement discretion …

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Court Lifts Stay on OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard Regarding COVID-19

On Friday, December 17, 2021, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit lifted the stay on OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard that mandates employers with 100 or more employees to require unvaccinated workers to wear a mask on …

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Our Practices