Jonathan R. Sigel

Jonathan is a partner, chair of the Labor, Employment and Employee Benefits Group and chair of the Higher Education Group. He advises clients on a broad range of employment issues, including employment and severance agreements, handbooks and policies, and terminations and layoffs. Jonathan also advises management on proper wage and hour classification. Jonathan represents clients in investigations by the Department of Labor and the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General. He has extensive experience representing management in the negotiation and litigation of employment and discrimination claims in the state and federal courts, and appears frequently before the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and represents employers in wage and hour litigation in court.

In 2003, Jonathan received the "40 under Forty" Award from the Worcester Business Journal. He received the Samuel Seder Young Leadership Award from the Jewish Federation of Central Massachusetts in 1998. Jonathan has been named a Massachusetts “Super Lawyer” by Boston magazine and Law & Politics every year since 2009. Jonathan was selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2020 in the field of Employment Law - Management. First listed in 2013.

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Massachusetts
  • Emory University School of Law JD (1991)
  • Bowdoin College BA, magna cum laude (1987)
  • Advised clients on a broad range of employment issues, including employment, severance and non-competition agreements, and handbooks, policies, terminations and layoffs
  • Successfully represented many employers in the defense of discrimination claims filed with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination and in state and federal courts
  • Successfully represented many employers in other employment-related litigation, such as disputes regarding employment contracts and confidentiality and non-competition agreements
  • Advised and assisted employers with internal investigations of alleged employee misconduct, including claims of sexual harassment
  • Advised employers on wage and hour compliance matters and represented employers during audits by agencies such as the Department of Labor and the Office of the Attorney General
  • Provided numerous in-house presentations for clients on harassment prevention and employment law basics for supervisors

Publications/Presentations

Professional / Community Affiliations

  • Jewish Federation's Governing Board, president (2018-2020); chair of 2009 Jewish Federation Campaign
  • Worcester Community Action Council, former board member
  • Community Legal Aid of Central MA, former board member (2014-2020)
  • Corridor 9/495 Regional Chamber of Commerce, former board member (2017-2019)
  • Worcester Art Museum, Trustee; chair of the Human Resources Committee

Link Fixed! Minimum Wage Increases to $13.50 Per Hour While Holiday and Sunday Premium Pay for Retail Employees Continues Down The Path To Abolishment

As of January 1, 2021, the minimum wage for regular employees (i.e., non-tipped minimum wage employees) increased to $13.50 per hour.  The minimum wage is scheduled to increase twice more, to $14.25 and $15.00 per hour, on January 1, 2022 …

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President Biden Issues Executive Order Regarding Workplace Discrimination

That was quick! On his first day in office, President Joseph Biden issued the Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation.  With the Executive Order, President Biden instructed each federal agency …

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COVID-19 Related Updates for Massachusetts Employers

New COVID Relief Bill On Monday, December 21, 2020 the United States Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, which includes several provisions aimed at providing COVID-19 relief (the “Relief Bill”).  As public employers and employers with less than 500 …

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EEOC Releases Guidance on Mandatory Vaccinations

With Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine receiving emergency approval from the FDA, and emergency approval for Moderna’s vaccine expected shortly, many employers are wondering whether they can require employees to receive the vaccine once it becomes available to the general public. On December …

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Massachusetts’ Sector Specific Workplace Safety Standards for Office Spaces Updated

Governor Baker’s administration updated Massachusetts’ Sector Specific Workplace Specific Safety Standards for Office Spaces to Address COVID-19 (the “Standards”).  While all employers operating office spaces are advised to review the complete Standards, key provisions are: Face coverings: workers and visitors …

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Paid Family and Medical Leave is Right Around the Corner!

Beginning on January 1, 2021, covered individuals in the Commonwealth will be eligible to begin using Paid Family and Medical Leave (“PFML”). Under the law – which was enacted in 2018 as part of the so-called “Grand Bargain” between the …

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What does the December 8th Rollback Mean for Massachusetts Employers?

On December 8, 2020, Governor Charles Baker issued COVID-19 Order No. 58, which returns all of Massachusetts to Step 1 of Phase 3 of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan, effective December 13, 2020.   As a result, all “Phase 3, Step 2” …

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PFML Certification Form for a Serious Health Condition

This week, the Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave published a Certification of a Serious Health Condition form, which must be completed when an individual requests medical or family leave under the new Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave …

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Employers Must Ensure Compliance with the Families First Coronavirus Response Act as they Re-Open and Recall Employees from Furlough

The U.S. Department of Labor recently issued new Questions and Answers regarding its interpretation of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”). In relevant part, the DOL made clear that if an employer is calling employees back from furlough, the …

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Update: Families First Coronavirus Act

The Department of Labor issued new guidance over the weekend regarding the Families First Act, including important definitions and clarifications.  I broke down the new guidance into the overall framework of the new EFMLA and EPSLA in this recorded webinar. …

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