Labor & Employment Appeals

Lawyers in the Supreme Court & Appellate group represent clients in appeals that raise the most important and complex questions in employment law today, including arbitration, wage-and-hour and discrimination claims, ERISA and benefits litigation, federal preemption and immigration law.

We work hand in hand with the 60 lawyers in our firm's renowned Employment Law & Litigation practice, which was named the 2015 and 2016 "Litigation Department of the Year: Labor & Employment" by California’s The Recorder, and which recently scored a huge win at trial for the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in a gender discrimination suit that had the entire country talking about gender in the workplace.

Drawing on the subject matter expertise of our employment lawyers, our appellate group brings to bear a comprehensive, sophisticated understanding of the issues that matter most to employers. We then translate that substantive expertise into the facts, themes and legal arguments that persuade appellate judges.

    • Represented Morgan Stanley in an issue of first impression before the Ninth Circuit, in which the Court of Appeals held that federal securities law preempts the enforcement of California’s "forced patronage" statute against brokerage firms. The stakes were enormous, as our client’s policies governed thousands of employees, and California law prescribed steep penalties for every day of a violation.
    • Represented Microsoft in a critical case affecting the immigration status of over 1,000 employees. After reviewing Microsoft’s brief, the federal government contacted Microsoft and offered to settle the case on favorable terms.
    • As lead counsel in the employee benefits case MetLife v. Glenn, persuaded the U.S. Supreme Court that courts must give less deference to an insurance company’s decisions to deny benefits than to the decisions of a neutral administrator, because the insurance company labors under a conflict of interest.
    • Successfully defended Kentucky before the Supreme Court against allegations of age discrimination in connection with the structure of its plan of retirement benefits for public employees, a case that threatened to invalidate thousands of plans in two dozen states.
    • Convinced the Washington Supreme Court to deny review and preserve KPMG’s win in Litchfield v. KPMG, a case about whether audit associates are exempt professional employees.

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