Employment and Employee Benefits Litigation

Smith & Downey has an extensive litigation practice, and routinely represents employers, plans, plan administrators and other service providers in claims arising before governmental agencies, arbitration tribunals, and federal and state courts.

Agency Investigations

The Firm represents clients in resolving conflicts raised before various governmental agencies, including the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”); the Employee Benefits Security Administration (“EBSA”); the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”); the Department of Labor (“DOL”) (including claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), the Service Contract Act (“SCA”), the Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”) and ERISA); the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”)(including claims under Executive Order 11246); the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”)(including unfair labor practices, petitions for union representation and other matters arising under the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”)); and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”).

Employment Discrimination Claims

Smith & Downey routinely represents employers in matters involving employment discrimination, including claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”), the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (“PDA”), the American with Disabilities Act (“ADA”)/Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (“ADAAA”), and various state and local anti-discrimination laws. The Firm assists employers in drafting position statements and responding to requests for information from the EEOC and state and local counterparts. If a claim proceeds to litigation, the Firm offers experienced representation in both federal and state courts.

General Employment Litigation

The Firm routinely defends employers who have been sued for wrongful discharge; wage and hour claims, including alleged violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) and corresponding state and local laws; claims under Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”); claims involving trade secrets and restrictive covenants (including claims under the Uniform Trade Secrets Act); claims for breach of contract; claims for defamation and other workplace torts; and other employment-related lawsuits.

Employee Benefits Litigation

Smith & Downey is able to use its considerable employee benefits experience to provide highly sophisticated representation of employers, plans, plan administrators, third party administrators and other service providers in claims arising under ERISA, including claims involving benefit disputes, withdrawal liability from multiemployer benefit plans, breach of fiduciary duties claims, and other benefit-related matters.


The Firm has handled numerous claims before the American Arbitration Association (“AAA”), and provides skilled representation for employers whose matters have been designated for resolution through arbitration.