Employment Litigation Practice

Todd & Weld is a Boston based boutique litigation firm which has, among others, a group of talented employment trial lawyers with extensive experience representing employers and employees across all major industries, in all facets of their employment relationship.  We represent numerous financial companies, healthcare companies, insurance agencies, and many different staffing firms, such as IT staffing firms, public and private companies, including some of the largest in the world, small start-up companies and mid-sized companies, and non-profits.  We are mindful of our clients’ concerns and goals, including the need for obtaining sound and practical advice and finding appropriate solutions to employment disputes in the work place.  We bring creative and efficient problem solving to our clients’ disputes in both pre-suit and in litigation. 

Discrimination, Harassment, and Retaliation

We represent employers and employees in employment disputes in state and federal courts and before the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) and the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission (EEOC).  By representing both employers and employees, Todd & Weld has developed keen insights into the strategy and tactics of both sides.  We bring this wealth of experience, along with personal attention, to each of the clients we represent.

Our Employment Group has tried many types of discrimination and harassment claims, including age, gender, sexual harassment, hostile environment, disability and handicap, race, religion, national origin, and retaliation.  We bring and defend claims under M.G.L. c. 151B, Title VII, ADEA, FMLA, ADA and other state and federal employment claims.  Our attorneys have in-depth experience in the employment arena and we have an excellent reputation in our legal community for trying cases to verdict, obtaining summary judgment on harassment and discrimination cases, and negotiating significant and favorable settlements on behalf of clients. 

Employment Class Actions

Todd & Weld attorneys have handled many class actions involving overtime, classification of employees under state and federal laws, and employee tips/gratuities.  Wage and hour class actions as well as misclassification class actions are escalating.  Todd & Weld has first-hand experience having litigated these types of class actions on behalf of companies in state and federal courts.

Executive Employment Agreements, Severance Agreements, Stock Agreements, and Change in Control Agreements

Our Employment Group also represent individuals and has extensive experience negotiating and counseling Executives and Companies on important employment issues, including the negotiation of Executive employment agreements and severance packages at the outset of the Executive’s Employment.  We have represented Executives and Companies in negotiating Executive employment agreements, and complex severance agreements impacted by, among other things, change in control agreements, stock agreements, IRS 280G and 409A severance benefits issues and other complex severance issues.

Employment Counseling

Todd & Weld counsels clients on a variety of issues including advice on best practices for hiring, compensation classification, wage and hour issues, severance issues, discipline and termination. Our Employment Group has experience reviewing, updating and advising on company policies and employee guides/handbooks.  We advise clients so that they are able to keep current on the law, including the latest developments in legislation and important employment decisions that impact our clients’ businesses.  Recent legislative activity increasingly impacts all employers in one way or another, including CORI reform legislation, COBRA and Massachusetts personnel records statutes.

Internal Investigations

Todd & Weld conducts internal investigations for clients in complaints of discrimination, harassment and other work place disputes.  We have been engaged to investigate employee complaints of sexual harassment, hostile environment, disability and reasonable accommodation issues, and claims of age discrimination on behalf of corporate clients. 

Labor Arbitration/Discipline and Discharge

Todd & Weld represents management in labor arbitrations at the American Arbitration Association pursuant to collective bargaining agreements.  We have tried a number of discipline and discharge cases before the American Arbitration Association on behalf of numerous clients, including non-profit organizations and corporations.  We also counsel management on disciplinary matters before discipline is implemented.  We have also represented management on matters before the National Labor Relations Committee, including claims of unfair bargaining practices, Weingarten rights and other labor issues.

Noncompetition, Non-Solicitation, Non-Disclosure and Trade Secrets

Todd & Weld attorneys are actively involved in trying non-compete cases involving noncompetition, non-solicitation and non-disclosure restrictive covenants contained in employment agreements, as well as claims involving trade secrets, breach of fiduciary duty, tortious interference with contractual relations and advantageous business relations, and misappropriation.  We were involved in one of the first reported noncompetition decisions in the Massachusetts Business Litigation Session representing Staples, Inc. in the WB Mason v. Staples case, 12 Mass. L. Rptr. No. 26, 603 (January 18, 2001).  We have been involved in numerous other notable decisions, including Oxford Global Resources, Inc. v. Guerriero, 2003 WL 23112398 (D. Mass. Dec. 30, 2003), Boch Toyota, Inc. v. Klimoski, 18 Mass. L. Rptr. 80 (Mass. Super. June 24, 2004), Lycos, Inc. v. Jackson, 18 Mass. L. Rptr.256, Mass. Super LEXIS 348 (August 24, 2004); and Wm. Gallagher Assoc. Ins. Brokers, Inc. v. The Hays Insurance Brokerage Group of New England, C.A. No. 11-02532 (Mass. Super. July 11, 2011), as well as numerous noncompetition/non-solicitation cases on behalf of stock brokerage and mutual fund companies, including a recent preliminary injunction decision obtained on behalf of a client enforcing noncompetition and non-solicitation covenants against a portfolio manager in the Business Litigation Session.  Our employment attorneys give sound and practical advice concerning non-compete issues.  We are frequently writing about and speaking on these issues at seminars and other publications, including being quoted in the Employment Law 360, The Boston Globe, Boston Business Journal and Mass. Lawyers Weekly.

OSHA Citations

We have represented companies which have litigated citations issued by the U.S. Occupation Safety and Health Administration for work place issues.  Our employment lawyers at Todd & Weld have successfully represented companies in negotiating and resolving OSHA complaints and, where appropriate, in trying OSHA complaints filed by the Solicitor’s Office and other federal agencies

Physicians and Other Professionals

We represent physicians in disciplinary matters before the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine.  We represent physicians in disputes with hospitals and medical practices, including whistleblower cases, hospital privileges, peer review, disciplinary matters, defamation and other employment-related disputes.  We also represent other professionals before various state and federal administrative boards and agencies.

Wage and Hour (FLSA and Wage Act), Independent Contractor, and Commission Claims

We also have been involved in trying cases involving wage and hour issues, including the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the Massachusetts Wage Act claims, overtime claims, and misclassification cases (exempt/non-exempt and independent contractor issues).  Todd & Weld was involved in one of the first decisions by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court interpreting a damages defense to the amended Independent Contractor statute, G.L. c. 149, section 148B, in the widely reported decision of Somers v. Converged Access, Inc., 454 Mass. 582 (2010).  We have successfully represented companies in wage and hour audits and investigations conducted by the Attorney General’s Fair Labor Division and the U.S. Department of Labor.  We have represented numerous individuals and companies in commission claims under the Massachusetts Wage Act.  In an era of increasing investigations and enforcement actions brought by government agencies, including the Attorney General’s office and the U.S. Department of Labor and other state and federal agencies, our clients look to Todd &Weld for appropriate employment advice, particularly where violations of wage and hour statutes, such as misclassification of employees as independent contractors, can have potentially significant and costly consequences.

Whistleblower/Qui Tam Cases

Our employment attorneys have represented both plaintiffs and defendants in whistleblower and qui tam cases and have achieved significant recoveries on behalf of individuals.  We have obtained significant settlements and verdicts on behalf of individuals who have been whistleblowers on illegal business practices.

Industries/Representative Clients

Our Employment Group represents employers in numerous industries and sectors, including financial (banking, joint venture/private equity, brokerage firms), biotech and life sciences, insurance, high technology/Information Technology, and non-profits.  Whether you are a large publicly held company, a start-up or an executive, human resources manager or employee, Todd & Weld has the knowledge and experience to help guide you through all aspects of employment disputes.

Representative clients have included:

  • Adecco Group, N.A.
  • Advanced Magnetic
  • Alliance Companies
  • America’s Growth Capital
  • Back Bay Restaurant Group
  • Barton & Associates, Inc.
  • Boch Toyota
  • Boston Cleaning Company, Inc.
  • Centerline Partners
  • Charles River Ventures
  • Draper Labs
  • Eliassen Group
  • Egenera, Inc.
  • Entegee, Inc.
  • The Hays Group
  • Herb Chambers Companies
  • Huttig Building Products, Inc.
  • Jay Cashman, Inc.
  • Massachusetts Bar Association
  • Massachusetts Trial Court
  • National Amusements
  • National Floors Direct
  • Overture Partners
  • Oxfam America
  • Oxford Global Resources, Inc.
  • Panera Bread
  • Philbin Insurance Group
  • Professional Services Alternatives
  • IRS Express, Inc. (now Breakaway Courier Systems, Inc.)
  • Rockland Trust Company
  • Safecore, Inc.
  • Savvis
  • Staples, Inc.
  • Subaru of New England, Inc.
  • Systems Pros, Inc.
  • The Beal Companies
  • The Harvard Lampoon
  • The Regal Press, Inc.
  • Town of Holliston
  • Uno Restaurant Corporation
  • Verdolino & Lowey
  • Wakefield Municipal Gas & Light
  • Winter Wyman & Company

Some of our representative cases

  • Achieved $800,000 settlement in sex discrimination case against a national discount retailer on behalf of an employee laid off in a downsizing, an amount that represented over twelve years of the employee's annual salary.
  • Successfully defended a private school against an age discrimination claim brought by tenured faculty member.
  • Represented three women employed by a public agency in sex discrimination and retaliation claims resulting in a significant settlement.
  • Represented law firms in connection with sexual harassment, gender discrimination, and wrongful termination claims.
  • Represented an entertainment company in litigation of a gender discrimination/sexual harassment claim.
  • Represented a discount retailer in connection with wrongful termination and breach of contract claims by a former officer of the company.
  • Represented several IT staffing companies enforcing non-competition agreements against departing sales personnel.
  • Represented a national fitness chain in defense of national origin and race discrimination claims.
  • Advised a non-profit organization on employee termination and employment policies.
  • Advised staffing companies on proper classification of independent contractors and employees.
  • Represented a car dealership in relation to an OSHA complaint.
  • Represented individual executives against claims of wage and hour violations, sexual harassment, discrimination and retaliation.
  • Represented employees in claims against employers for all forms of discrimination, retaliation, wage, FMLA, and reasonable accommodation.

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