Reinhart’s Labor and Employment and Litigation attorneys understand that people are among a business’s most important assets. Yet we also recognize the human element that can sometimes manifest itself in challenging labor matters. To the extent possible, we make it our goal to help clients avoid costly and time-consuming employment litigation.
In the event that a particular matter progresses to the point of litigation, however, Reinhart attorneys are experienced in litigating cases before state and federal trial and appellate courts, as well as before state and federal administrative agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Wisconsin Equal Rights Division and the Illinois Department of Human Rights.
Drawing on our multidisciplinary team’s depth of experience, Reinhart attorneys are well-versed in litigating the following types of employment matters.
We have extensive experience with the full array of federal employment discrimination statutes, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), the Civil Rights Act of 1991, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Older Workers Benefits Protection Act (OWBPA), the Equal Pay Act and the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA). We are also well-versed in defending clients under similar state fair employment laws, including the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act and the Illinois Human Rights Act.
Claims alleging violations of the Family and Medical Leave Act and state law counterparts (such as the Wisconsin Family and Medical Leave Act) are becoming more frequent. Whether the claim alleges that a request for family or medical leave was improperly denied, resulted in retaliation, or some other theory under the applicable statute, attorneys in Reinhart’s Labor and Employment Practice are experienced in defending clients against such claims.
Reinhart attorneys assist employers in every aspect of investigations conducted by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Wisconsin Equal Rights Division, the Illinois Department of Human Rights and other state administrative agencies. We represent the interests of our clients from the very inception of the investigation, starting with the receipt of the initial complaint, through the ultimate determination by the applicable agency.
Labor and Employment attorneys from Reinhart’s Wage and Hour group collaborate closely with our Litigation team to defend employers against wage and hour claims, including claims that involve allegations of unpaid or miscalculated wages (e.g., allegations of unpaid overtime, vacation pay, commissions and bonuses), improperly unreimbursed business expenses, misclassification of employees as independent contractors and misclassification of “exempt” and “non-exempt” employees.
We defend employers against wrongful discharge lawsuits, and against emerging “employment tort” theories of liability such as defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, intentional interference with employment contract, invasion of privacy, fraud, misrepresentation and negligent hiring.
Our attorneys defend employers against sexual and other workplace harassment claims pending before state and federal trial and appellate courts, and against claims pending before administrative agencies.
Recent court decisions have increased the potential exposure of employers to claims alleging unlawful retaliation for engaging in conduct protected by state and federal fair employment laws. We defend employers against such claims.
We counsel employers with respect to the eligibility of former employees for unemployment insurance benefits and represent employers at unemployment compensation hearings.
Federal and state laws provide a variety of protections for “whistleblowers” – employees who report certain violations or activities, or who refuse to follow unlawful instructions. We defend employers against claims brought by whistleblowers under those laws.
We represent employers in hearings and appeals concerning primary liability for benefits, bad faith denial of benefits, safety claims and unreasonable refusal to rehire claims.