Employment Litigation

We have an extensive track record of success in the defense of wrongful termination claims, workplace torts and employment litigation, including claims of sex, age, race, sexual orientation and disability discrimination and retaliation. We appear regularly on behalf of employers in state and federal courts and before the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Civil Service Commission and the State Ethics Commission. We also have extensive experience in the litigation of wage and hour disputes and in the enforcement of non-disclosure, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements.

Practice Chair

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

Coming to a Workplace Near You: New Fair Labor Standards Act Overtime Regulations Appear Imminent

The U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) recently sent proposed regulations to the Federal Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) to amend the Fair Labor Standard Act’s White Collar Exemptions – i.e., the professional, executive and administrative exemptions – by increasing …

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WARN Act Violations ≠ Wage Act Violations

Early in 2018, the Massachusetts Wage Act, G.L. c. 149, §148, was in the news with two noteworthy decisions by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. Bookending 2018, the Supreme Judicial Court closed the year with yet another decision narrowing the …

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U.S. Secretary of Education Released Proposed Changes to Title IX Regulations

On November 16, 2018, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos released proposed changes to Title IX regulations on sexual harassment. While the public has 60 days to comment before the regulations take effect, the following are the key aspects of …

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Judicial Protection of the Employment Relationship: The Broad Reach of the Workers’ Compensation Retaliation Prohibition

The Massachusetts Appeals Court recently had the opportunity to assess the limits of a statute designed to protect employees – the prohibition on employer retaliation against employees for pursuing Workers’ Compensation claims. The Court seized upon the unique facts of …

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Massachusetts Employers: Don’t Forget to Submit the New HIRD Form by November 30

All Massachusetts employers with six or more employees must submit a Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure form (“HIRD Form”) to MassHealth through the MassTaxConnect web portal by November 30, 2018. In November 2017, Massachusetts amended Chapter 118E of the General Laws …

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Constructive Discharge Claims: Recent Appellate Decision Narrows Availability

In our defense of employers, we often see the situation where an employee who has quit makes the argument as part of the claim that the actions of the employer compelled the employee to resign. This “constructive discharge” argument can …

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New Federal Background Notice Form

In September of 2018, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau of the United States issued an update of the Agency’s model Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act notice which must be provided to applicants and employees that are subject to a background …

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Is Your Noncompete Still Valid? Technically Yes, But . . . Recent Decision Foreshadows How The New Massachusetts Noncompetition Agreement Act May Impact Existing Agreements

In an earlier post, we reported on the passage of the new Massachusetts Noncompetition Agreement Act, which takes effect on October 1, 2018, and significantly changes the law in this area by narrowing the permissible protections and imposing several new …

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Governor Baker Signs Noncompetition Bill Into Law

Last Friday, August 10th, Governor Baker signed into law the “Act relative to the judicial enforcement of noncompetition agreements” (the “Act”). Governor Baker’s signature came 11 days after the Massachusetts Legislature passed the Act. As Amanda Baer explained in her recent …

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Massachusetts Legislature Passes Long-Anticipated Act Limiting Noncompetition Agreements

On July 31, 2018, the Massachusetts Legislature passed the “Act relative to the judicial enforcement of noncompetition agreements” (the “Act”). If signed by Governor Charlie Baker, the Act will take effect on October 1, 2018 and limit the ability of …

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Our Practices