Labor & Employment Understanding Relationships

Labor & Employment

Richards Layton employment lawyers don’t just know employment law—we understand workplace relationships and develop a solid understanding of our clients’ employment issues and policies. Our customized solutions help ensure compliance with federal and state labor laws, minimize disputes with employees, and maximize strategic advantage if litigation is necessary. We combine responsiveness and skill for the creative planning and aggressive advocacy that meet the specific needs of each client.

Effective Federal and State Practice

Employers of all sizes and in many business sectors in both regional and national markets rely on Richards Layton for proactive employment law advice and defense in employment law disputes.  We are experienced at keeping our clients in compliance with federal and state employment and labor law, and defending them in court when controversies arise under those laws.

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Personal Service

We have the broad employment law knowledge to handle the wide variety of issues that arise in workplace relationships.  That gives us the ability to act quickly and provide customized solutions.  Our lawyers are available to employment law clients whenever and wherever necessary.  The potential cost and distraction of employment problems like sexual harassment allegations or noncompete disputes demand immediate attention, and we provide it.

Employment Advice

We keep issues of employment law compliance from becoming major concerns when assets, businesses or companies are bought or sold—particularly in transactions involving Delaware entities or those governed by Delaware law.  Our lawyers can identify potential issues, then structure and document transactions in a way that protects clients while ensuring completion of the deal.  We ask the right questions about compliance policies, compensation arrangements, employee benefits and employment contracts in order to eliminate problems and avoid risk from employment law violations or litigation after the deal closes.

Employment Litigation

Our lawyers are fully prepared to defend employers in claims made under federal and state employment statutes.  We represent employer clients in complaint investigations and administrative proceedings by federal and state agencies, and have successfully litigated and resolved matters in federal district courts, bankruptcy court, and state courts involving allegations and claims of:

  • All discrimination, retaliation, hostile work environment, harassment claims
  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) violations, including pregnancy
  • Wrongful and retaliatory discharge
  • Family Medical & Leave Act (FMLA) violations
  • Wage and hour violations under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
  • Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) violations

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Noncompete Agreements

Disputes over noncompete agreements are the kind of time-sensitive controversies at which we excel.  We are very experienced in representing employers and individual employees, and are skilled at securing restraining orders and permanent injunctions or resisting invalid ones as needed to protect our clients, especially in cases governed by Delaware law or tried in the Delaware courts. The insights we gain in resolving noncompete and nondisclosure disputes enable our lawyers to draft effective restrictive covenants that, as needed, can help to prevent the disclosure of customer lists, trade secrets and other sensitive or proprietary information.

Contract Negotiation and Drafting

Our lawyers negotiate and draft employment contracts, effective severance agreements for use in the termination of employees, for obtaining valid releases of claims, ensuring that the employer’s rights to confidential or sensitive information are fully protected and that the employer meets all the procedural requirements of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) and the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act.  Draft policies and handbooks.

Problem Prevention and Compliance Training

Our lawyers help clients develop and implement a sound and consistent approach to effectively avoiding workplace controversies and resolving employee concerns without resorting to litigation.

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Policies and Procedures

We draft workplace policies and procedures that can prevent potential problems and disputes with employees.  Our compliance advice is founded on asking the right questions about current employment compliance policies in order to find areas that may be out of date or need improvement.  The goal is to help eliminate problems and avoid risk, and the key to that is developing personnel policies tailored to the individual employer that meet all legal requirements and minimize the likelihood of employment-related claims and lawsuits.

Internal Investigations

Growing focus on conducting internal investigation of harassment, discrimination or retaliation claims at their early stages, to recommend the best litigation-avoidance approach as well as to help prevent future workplace issues.  We also offer guidance on sensitive issues such as alcohol and drug testing and background checks in hiring.  We have the experience to minimize workplace problems while respecting the employees’ privacy and avoiding employee claims of retaliation.

WARN Notification

We help clients comply with the federal WARN Act requiring advance notice of covered plant closings and mass layoffs.  Because such notices must be provided not just to employees and their representatives, but also to the appropriate units of state and local government, effective planning for WARN notification is a must.  Richards Layton has advised on numerous notification and possible exemption issues.