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Sexual Harassment: Workplace Investigations and Litigation in the #MeToo Era

Total Credits
1.5 - 2.5
CDs/DVDs Only
This course is only available in CD/DVD format.
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As a result of the #MeToo Movement Era, it seems that that there has been an uptick in complaints of alleged sexual harassment in for-profit and non-profit companies. Thus, it is now more important than ever that companies and other organizations proactively deal with sexual harassment allegations. Thus companies must:

  • Promptly investigate the allegations;
  • Thoroughly protect the victims against retaliation;
  • Take proper action when wrongful conduct is found; and
  • Take steps to try and prevent future harassment

Our panel of experts will discuss best practices in regard to how to effectively deal with sexual harassment allegations and plan to avoid subsequent problems.

This is one program that attorneys cannot afford to miss!

Lecturer Bios

Richard B. Friedman, Esq.

Richard Friedman is a former AMLAW 100 employment and business litigation partner and an experienced trial lawyer. He handles all kinds of employment-related matters such as those involving investigations of alleged employee misconduct, covenants not to compete, employee discipline and terminations, discrimination claims, fiduciary duty claims, wrongful discharge claims, defamation claims, alleged misappropriation of trade secrets, and related issues for companies of varying sizes as well as individuals in New York state and federal trial and appellate courts as well as other venues.

Richard’s most recent blog article discusses several noteworthy National Labor Relations Board decisions concerning a few of the do’s and don’ts involving employer social media practices and policies and employee posts on social media. The article can be accessed via the following link.

Richard also represents individual clients in employment-related matters and disputes. He has advised individual clients with respect to their rights and obligations arising out of restrictive covenant provisions and negotiated numerous employment and severance agreements on behalf of such clients. Richard has also counseled experienced lawyers in connection with their ethical obligations when changing law firms.

In addition, Richard aggressively represents clients in a wide range of business litigation matters, including contract and licensing agreement disputes, partnership disputes, real estate litigation, and post-judgment enforcement proceedings. Richard has a particularly active practice in the New York County Commercial Division and was appointed by the former Chief Administrative Judge to the Court’s Advisory Committee on which he continues to serve with the ten judges of that court.

Jessie Cardinale

Jessie Cardinale is an Employee Relations Consultant at Macquarie Group, a global investment banking and financial services firm headquartered in Sydney, Australia. She serves as counsel and consultant for client and market-facing business lines as well as support divisions. She works very closely with Pride@Macquarie, one of five employee network groups at Macquarie. Prior to Macquarie, Jessie worked in private practice focusing on executive compensation, employment and severance agreements, and employment-based litigation. She received her B.A. from Union College as a member of the 6-Year Accelerated Law Program, with summa cum laude distinction, and her J.D., with summa cum laude distinction, from Albany Law School.

William Dahill, Esq.

Since 1991, William Dahill has concentrated his practice on complex commercial litigation. Areas of focus include securities industry litigation, employment litigation, construction litigation, insurance/reinsurance disputes, secured lending disputes, partnership and shareholder disputes. After beginning his career at Cahill Gordon & Reindel, he joined WMD in 1998, and has been a Partner since 1999. Bill counsels and represents business entities at all levels and stages from start-ups to public companies. He also counsels and represents individuals in claims and defenses in litigation matters. He appears regularly in Federal and State Courts in New York and Connecticut. Bill is admitted to the bar in the States of New York and Connecticut, as well as to the bars of the Southern District of New York, Eastern District of New York, and the Courts of Appeals for the 2nd and 5th Circuits. In addition he has appeared in jurisdictions throughout the country, including Pennsylvania State Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Eastern District of Tennessee, Texas State Court and Illinois State Court. Bill conducts jury and bench trials, as well as multiple appellate arguments. In addition, Bill has conducted numerous arbitrations through full hearings at FINRA, AAA, JAMS and ARIAS. Finally, Bill has substantial experience with successful mediations conducted both through the courts as well as private organizations. Bill has spoken before groups such as the Securities Industry Expert’s Roundtable on arbitration matters, as well as before groups on employment law topics.

Jon Drucker, Esq.

Jon Drucker has been an attorney with Godiva Chocolatier for almost 7 years and has practiced law for 33 years. He has 3 children, the first two of whom have not emulated their parents by joining the legal profession. The jury is still out with regard to their third child who is attending college. He is very pleased to be joining this distinguished panel.

Loren Gesinsky, Esq.

Mr. Gesinsky is a partner in the Labor & Employment Department in the New York office of Seyfarth Shaw LLP. He represents employers before state and federal courts, administrative agencies, arbitrators, mediators, and other tribunals regarding all legal issues relating to the workplace, including wage and hour collective and class actions, discrimination, harassment, wrongful discharge, breach of contract, non-compete, other restrictive covenants and trade secrets. He also counsels employers and negotiates agreements regarding these issues, with particular attention on strategies to avoid litigation. Additionally, he participated actively in the United States Chamber of Commerce task force that developed comments on the United States Department of Labor’s proposed regulatory changes to the FLSA’s white-collar exemptions. Mr. Gesinsky has around twenty-five years of experience working as a labor and employment attorney. He developed an especially broad foundation for his representation of employers by previously practicing plaintiff's employment law and commercial litigation. Mr. Gesinsky has successfully tried, arbitrated, mediated, and otherwise advocated in numerous matters involving multiple and single plaintiffs. His advocacy abilities in the courtroom, as well as his negotiating and public speaking abilities, have been enriched by his considerable training and experience as an actor. Recognition of Mr. Gesinsky’s professional accomplishments includes his election as a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Attorneys, listing in Best Lawyers and Super Lawyers, appointments to Chair the Committee on Legal Issues Affecting People With Disabilities and the State Affairs Committee of the New York City Bar Association, and selection for mayoral appointment to the New York City Commission on Human Rights. He is a frequent author and presenter on employment-law issues.

Mara B. Levin, Esq.

Mara Levin is a partner, and co-chair of the firm's Business Litigation and Employment Practices. A legal advisor, litigator and seasoned trial lawyer, Mara’s clients include private and public companies, both domestic and international, operating in diverse industries including food and beverage, retail and apparel, consumer products and manufacturing, real estate, media and technology, and hospitality, travel and leisure. Clients rely on Mara to be an engrained part of their business – an outside general counsel who can resolve even the most contentious disputes, and is often consulted to review contractual agreements and operational decisions with a litigator’s lens. Because of her sound legal judgment, business savvy and pragmatic approach to problem solving, many of her clients have sought her counsel and representation for decades. Mara has consistently been rated a Super Lawyer by Thomson Reuters’ Super Lawyers (2012-2018), listed in Top Women Attorneys in New York (2014 and 2015), and has received an AV Peer Review Rating by Lexis Nexis Martindale-Hubbell, its highest level of professional excellence. Business Litigation + Real Estate Practice As lead counsel for complex litigations in both federal and state courts, Mara has obtained successful verdicts in both jury and bench trials. Her extensive business litigation experience includes contractual and fiduciary breaches, fraud, economic torts, and UCC disputes, as well as trade secret, restrictive covenant, and legal malpractice claims. Owners, developers, management companies, and national retailers often call on Mara for her vast real estate experience in commercial leasing and construction disputes. She regularly serves as outside general counsel to of residential portfolio owners and management companies, as well as cooperative and condominium boards of some of New York City’s most prestigious addresses. On the real estate transactional side, Mara reviews management contracts, development and construction agreements, and financing documents offering prophylactic advice in order to avoid litigation down the road. Employment Practice For more than 20 years, Mara has helped clients manage their day-to-day employment concerns. She uses her keen understanding of enforceable provisions and recent case law to develop employment policies and practices that withstand judicial scrutiny, should litigation arise. Mara also designs risk management programs for employers, and advises on hirings, terminations and workforce restructurings, severance agreements, exit incentive plans, FLSA and I-9 audits, as well as matters involving FMLA, disability and other statutorily protected leaves. Mara is regularly retained by employers to litigate all types of claims including trade secret, restrictive covenant and statutory violations, and to investigate and defend harassment and discrimination claims. She regularly litigates before federal and state courts, arbitration venues, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the New York State Division of Human Rights and the New York City Commission on Human Rights, as well as other state agencies in which her clients have offices.

Robert P. Lewis, Esq.

Robert P. Lewis, a member of the Firm's Global Employment Practice Group, is listed in the 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 editions of the New York Super Lawyers. He practices mainly in the areas of international and domestic employment law, including litigation, counseling, arbitration and alternative dispute resolution, as well as international litigation and arbitration. Mr. Lewis also serves as co-chair of the New York office's Pro Bono and Community Service Committee, and has long been involved in pro bono and community service activities. He is a member and former co-chair of the New York State Bar Association's Subcommittee on International Employment and Labor Law and the American Bar Association's International Law Section. Mr. Lewis has extensive experience counseling and defending foreign, domestic and multinational employers with respect to the myriad workplace issues arising under US and foreign law in connection with their operations in the US and overseas. Areas of expertise include all forms of employment discrimination and harassment, retaliation under "whistleblower" statutes and anti-discrimination statutes, wage and hour issues, conducting and supervising investigations of employee (including executive) misconduct, background checks and drug-testing, structuring and drafting ERISA-compliant severance plans, employee privacy issues and drafting and reviewing employee handbooks. Mr. Lewis also has experience both prosecuting and defending against “employee disloyalty” lawsuits arising from alleged breaches of restrictive covenants, misappropriation of trade secrets and proprietary information, unfair trade practices and breaches of fiduciary duties, by former employees. Mr. Lewis also counsels employers on legal matters related to the structure and implementation of domestic and international workforce reductions, employment-related issues arising from domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions and developing best employment practices and codes of conduct on a global basis.

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