People are a key to any organization’s success and can be one of its biggest challenges. With employment law constantly evolving and increasing in complexities, OMW attorneys assist its clients in navigating this landscape with a full range of services to help our clients position themselves to have productive employee relationships.
Many legal issues can be solved inexpensively when approached proactively. The Employment and Labor Law Practice Group provides extensive assistance to employers to prevent claims before they arise, or to minimize their impact. Our attorneys have real-life experience and practical solutions for employers in the public, private and nonprofit sectors. The following are examples of some of the most common preventive solutions that Ogden Murphy Wallace, P.L.L.C. provides to employers:
- Drafting and updating employee handbooks.
- Sexual harassment prevention training.
- Anti-discrimination training
- Diversity, equity, and inclusion training.
- Auditing FLSA and equal pay compliance issues, including overtime and employee classification issues.
- Updating job descriptions for ADA (disabilities law) and FLSA purposes.
- Drafting sexual harassment and anti-discrimination policies.
- Drafting Internet, computer use, privacy, and other policies.
- Drafting employee contracts and non-compete agreements.
- Drafting and implementing policies designed to protect against theft of trade secrets.
- Advice on performance improvement plans and termination decisions.
- Training for supervisors on implementing and documenting employee discipline.
- Training on best practices and legal requirements for employees involved in hiring processes.
- Training for supervisors on working effectively with unions and responding to grievances.
- Training for supervisors and HR employees on investigating sexual harassment and other workplace complaints.
- Training for employees and managers on workplace violence prevention.
- Drafting policies on preventing violence in the workplace.
- Advice on change management.
- Advice on layoffs, furloughs, and reductions in force.
- Advice on COVID-19 and other workplace health and safety issues.
The Employment and Labor Law Practice Group provides extensive dispute resolution services for employers, ranging from representing employers in negotiations to defending them in litigation. The following are examples of some of the most commonly requested dispute resolution services that OMW provides to employers:
- Defending employers regarding employee grievances, including arbitrations.
- Defending employers in court or other legal proceedings from claims for sexual harassment, discrimination (age, race, sex, disability, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, religion, etc.), civil rights violations, breach of contract, wrongful termination, wage and hour claims and other employment-related claims, and workplace violence issues.
- Assisting employers in responding to complaints filed with agencies such as the EEOC, Washington State Human Rights Commission, Department of Labor, Office of Civil Rights, and other state, local and federal agencies.
- Negotiating with employee’s attorneys to resolve discrimination, wrongful termination, harassment, wage and hour or other employment-related claims.
- Bringing suit on behalf of employers to stop employees from improperly using trade secrets or trade names, and from interfering with the employer’s contracts or business relations with customers or vendors.
- Representing employers in unemployment hearings.
- Working through reasonable accommodation issues under the ADA and state disabilities laws.
- Investigating workplace issues such as discrimination, harassment, theft, workplace violence, conflicts of interest, whistleblower complaints and fraud, and offering suggestions for appropriate discipline and/or prevention of future occurrences.
- Representing employers on appeals of employee claims.
The Employment and Labor Law Practice Group provides assistance to its clients in handling employee complaints in Washington State. Unlike some other states, Washington State is at-will, meaning that employees can be terminated at any time, with or without notice, and with or without cause. There are some exceptions, however, such as if the decision to terminate the employee is motivated by illegal discrimination or harassment based on age, race, sex, creed, religion, disability, marital status, veteran’s status, or other protected class. Also, employees in Washington State are protected from being treated differently because of their age, race, sex, religion, creed, disability, marital status, veteran’s status or other protected class. Employees are also protected from retaliation for exercising certain legal rights, such as bringing a harassment or discrimination claim, or voting or participating in jury duty or union activities.
OMW’s Employment and Labor Law Practice Group’s services regarding employee complaints range from assessing the validity of the claim under applicable local, state and federal laws to seeking a resolution of the claim through negotiation or legal process.
(Please note: communicating with us by phone, fax or email does not create an attorney-client relationship. We may decide not to represent you or you may decide to seek assistance elsewhere. Any information you send to us is not confidential unless one of our attorneys agrees to represent you. We are not responsible if the statute of limitations or other deadlines relating to your claims expires while we are deciding whether or not to represent you and you are encouraged to contact other lawyers for assistance if you need legal help quickly.)