Navigating workplace regulations is frequently complicated and circuitous. Whether a business is an early-stage company or a Fortune 50 company managing a global talent force, its ability to stay ahead of state and federal statutes can mean the difference between hitting growth targets and falling behind projections and competitors.

The Labor & Employment attorneys at Perkins Coie work closely with each client’s business to provide assertive, forward-thinking counsel when addressing regulations from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and state agencies.

State laws often add a layer of regulatory complexity, as they often differ from—and are sometimes stricter than—their federal counterparts. Drawing on our national platform and cross-office collaboration, we continually monitor employment law in every jurisdiction and offer proactive guidance to clients with multi-state workforces.

Perkins Coie’s robust employment counseling practice is characterized by an approach that includes heavy investment in client relationships. We visit our clients’ locations, including call centers, manufacturing and plant facilities, and educational institutions, getting to know the management team and carefully reviewing key policies and procedures. Our objective is to prevent costly litigation, avoid lengthy government investigations, and minimize business disruptions.

Informed by their deep ties to the tech sector and a longtime focus on startups and emerging companies, our attorneys are work at the forefront of evolving workplace issues. We advise clients on independent contractor issues and general compliance, changes to classification on either an individual or group basis, and the creation of legally compliant 1099/contractor relationships. 

Our team provides strategic counsel on virtually every aspect of employment law, including wage-and-hour compliance, family and medical leave, employment policies and handbooks, equal employment opportunity, drug testing and background checks, use of social media in the workplace, executive onboarding and termination, closings and reductions in force, workplace safety and health, and union activity. We also advise clients on the still-emerging area of privacy and data security, including the use of biometrics in the workplace.

We conduct comprehensive audits and devise airtight policies and procedures that protect our clients’ business interests while respecting their valued employees. Our team also designs and presents training programs for managers and supervisors that address sexual harassment and other hot-button employment issues.

With an eye toward preventing problems before they happen, our attorneys counsel clients on the preparation and implementation of employment agreements involving trade secrets and other intellectual property, confidentiality agreements, non-compete agreements, and internal trade secret protection procedures. We also develop and review employment contracts and agreements between our clients and key employees to identify risks and recommend efficient, business-focused solutions.