Labor & Employment

In today’s market, employers face an ever-increasing number of laws and regulations governing their business and employee relations. For employers to effectively navigate the complex world of labor and employment law, they need the help of experienced attorneys who understand the intricacies of the law and the workplace. From small businesses and not-for-profit organizations to FORTUNE 500 companies, our Labor & Employment attorneys work to provide practical advice and develop risk management strategies to achieve business goals and reduce the chance of litigation. Should litigation arise, we vigorously defend and advocate for our clients. But what sets us apart is our commitment to thoroughly understanding our clients’ businesses and providing them with the most effective legal advice to meet their objectives.

Our attorneys have been defending and counseling employers since our firm’s founding more than 185 years ago. We continue our proud tradition by representing today’s businesses on a full range of current labor and employment issues. Our attorneys are well versed in the labor and employment issues faced by employers today and have real-world, hands-on experience helping to solve them. We have been in the courtroom, at the negotiating table, in the picket line, and anywhere else our clients have needed us. We understand that every issue our clients face, no matter how small, is important and deserves our best effort. We are committed to providing our clients with prompt, practical and effective advice and representation whenever and wherever they need help.

Our attorneys are experienced in all aspects of labor relations law, employment law and litigation, state and federal wage and hour law and litigation, OSHA, workplace torts, workplace fraud/unfair competition, non-compete agreements, contract claims, wrongful discharge, risk management, and alternative dispute resolution.

We regularly handle matters before state and federal agencies that regulate the labor and employment area, including the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the New York State Division of Human Rights (“NYSDHR”), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the New York State Public Employment Relations Board (PERB), and the U.S. and New York Departments of Labor.

We help employers with these and other workplace matters:

Advice and counseling

  • Background checks
  • Employee discipline
  • Employee leaves
  • Employee manuals and policies
  • Employee privacy
  • Independent contractors and contingent workers
  • Reductions-in-Force/WARN Act
  • Severance agreements
  • Social media
  • Substance abuse and drug testing
  • Wage and hour issues
  • Workplace issues

Alternative dispute resolution

  • Arbitration
  • Mediation
  • Negotiation

Employment litigation

  • EEOC and state agency charges
  • Employee disloyalty
  • Employment contracts
  • Non-compete and restrictive covenants
  • State and federal court employment discrimination litigation
  • Workplace fraud/unfair competition
  • Workplace torts
  • Wrongful discharge

Labor relations law

  • Collective bargaining
  • Grievance and arbitration proceedings
  • Labor strikes
  • Unfair labor practice charges/improper practice charges
  • Union avoidance
  • Union organizing

Training programs/risk management

  • Conducting investigations
  • Discipline and discharge
  • Drug testing
  • E-Discovery/electronic communications management/preservation
  • Interviewing and hiring
  • Leaves of absence
  • Reasonable accommodation
  • Sexual and other harassment
  • Workplace violence

Wage and hour compliance and litigation

Workplace health and safety (OSHA)

  • Compliance
  • Investigation defense
  • Litigation
  • Whistleblower defense

We have successfully represented clients – from small, medium and large to privately owned and publicly traded – in all types of labor relations, discrimination and employment matters, including claims under the National Labor Relations Act, Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the New York State Human Rights Law, the Family and Medical Leave Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act and corresponding state laws. We have obtained jury verdicts and had summary judgments granted dismissing all types of labor and employment claims.

Our attorneys also litigate employment contract claims, employee non-compete agreements, wrongful discharge claims and employee disloyalty claims. In addition, we defend workplace torts, such as defamation, assault and battery, and infliction of emotional distress.

We have successfully argued appeals for our clients before the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, all New York State Appellate Divisions and the New York State Court of Appeals.

We send our clients regular updates via electronic communications that cover labor and employment law, with a focus on new decisions and trends that may impact them. We also present seminars that cover the latest developments and areas of interest.

Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business 2020

Phillips Lytle is proud to be recognized by Chambers USA© for a fourth consecutive year for excellence in labor and employment law. Click here to view Phillips Lytle's profile on the Chambers USA website.

Practice Area Icon: Labor & Employment