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Practice Areas

Traditional Labor and the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA)

We combine deep institutional knowledge with a practical, business-oriented focus to represent our clients vigorously and help them navigate this ever-evolving space. Our expertise includes unfair labor practice cases, union organizing campaigns, contract negotiations, strikes, picketing, handbilling, and corporate campaigns, along with preventive counseling, advice, and training. We have decades of experience representing employers before the NLRB, in federal court, in labor arbitration, and in state courts to obtain injunctive relief when necessary. We have represented employers in virtually every industry, and have dealt with every significant labor organization in the United States.

  • Ranked Band 1 for Labor and Employment Law in California and Washington, D.C. and Band 2 for Labor and Employment Law Nationwide

    Chambers USA, 2022

Our Practice

  • Labor litigation: Unfair labor practice cases, representation case hearings, and injunction cases require more than expertise in the NLRA and NLRB procedures—they require a team of real litigators who can present the client’s position in a compelling way. Since 1951, our labor lawyers have vigorously represented employers before the NLRB and arbitrators, and in federal and state courts. Our attorneys have the depth of experience to handle cases through every stage of the proceedings. For example, we recently represented a major global technology company in defending against multiple unfair labor practice charges brought on behalf of activist employees who violated important workplace policies to protest the company’s choice of customers and security policies. We successfully obtained dismissal of many of the charges before issuance of a complaint. We then vigorously represented the company at trial on the remaining charges, as well as others that were remanded upon the change in administration. Another example is our successful representation of a prominent apparel manufacturer in defeating an election petition by a startup union that had formed to bring the company’s former CEO back to the company. We litigated whether the startup was a legitimate labor organization under the NLRA, and whether the scope of the bargained-for unit was appropriate. The hearing involved multiple days of witnesses and evidence, as well as collateral proceedings in district court to enforce subpoenas for live testimony and documents.

  • Union organizing campaigns: Our labor lawyers advise employers nationwide on union organizing attempts and corporate campaigns. We focus on two overriding goals: to follow the law and to win. The explosive growth of electronic communications and social media means that unions can employ more organizing tools than ever before. Union organizers can now solicit support and signatures—on union cards—without ever setting foot at the employer’s place of business.

  • Negotiations: We have bargained hundreds of collective bargaining agreements in every industry. Where agreement cannot be reached prior to workplace action, we assist in contingency planning.

  • Expertise in helping non-union employers: We frequently counsel non-union employers on how to retain their status, and we routinely represent employers who are facing union-organizing campaigns and unfair labor practice proceedings. This includes providing advice and counsel to many large employers regarding their workplace policies and practices. It also includes representing employers facing election petitions by established and startup unions. For example, we successfully represented a prominent university in defeating an attempt to organize non-tenured faculty. We litigated the case through the administrative hearing, before the NLRB, and before the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, which found that the university’s non-tenured faculty were managerial and therefore not “employees” under the Act.

  • Project labor agreements: We have negotiated project labor agreements for a variety of real estate, industrial, renewable energy, and energy storage projects, including Treasure Island Community Development, Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Hollywood Park Development & LA Rams Stadium Project, LA Clippers Arena Project, Abengoa Mojave Solar Project, Solar Gen 2 Solar Project, Diablo Energy Storage Project, and AltaGas-Goleta Energy Storage Project.

  • Advising on important labor issues as part of corporate and real estate transactions: We regularly advise the firm’s real estate and corporate clients during major sales and acquisitions. The endless landmines that must be navigated require labor expertise to help close the deal.

Leaders in the Field:

From scholarship to leadership roles, our labor partners are well-recognized experts in the field.

  • J. Al Latham

    • Elected a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers

    • Named one of the five best labor lawyers in California by the Los Angeles Daily Journal

    • Has taught Labor Law at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law for 30 years

    • Chosen by his peers for listing in The Best Lawyers in America

  • Cameron W. Fox

    • Recognized by Chambers USA as a top Labor and Employment Lawyer in 2021

    • Named as one of the Daily Journal’s Top Women Lawyers in California and Top Labor and Employment Lawyers in 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022

    • Recognized by The Legal 500 for Labor and Employment Disputes in 2018

    • Named as one of Southern California’s Outstanding Young Lawyers and Top Women Attorneys for multiple years since 2012

  • Stephen L. Berry

    • Legal counsel and lead labor contract negotiator for Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor Employers Association since 2004

    • Continuously named in The Best Lawyers in America since 2004, and named “Management Employment Lawyer of the Year” for the Orange County, California area each year since 2011

    • Named among the “Top Labor and Employment Lawyers of 2012” by the Daily Journal

    • Named in The Best Lawyers in America every year since 2018 for work in Employment Law (Individual and Management), Labor Law – Management, and Qui Tam Law

    • Elected a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers

  • Nancy L. Abell

    • Legal counsel and lead labor contract negotiator for the Los Angeles Philharmonic

    • 40 years’ experience negotiating collective bargaining agreements and arbitrating labor disputes

    • The Legal 500, Hall of Fame for Labor & Employment Disputes (Including Collective Actions): Defense (2021)

    • The Legal 500, Hall of Fame for Labor & Employment – Workplace and Employment Counseling (2021)

    • The Lawdragon Hall of Fame

    • 2016 Recipient of the Learned Hand Award

    • Consistently recognized as one of the top employment defense lawyers in California by Chambers USA

    • One of 50 lawyers recognized on The National Law Journal’s inaugural “Litigation Trailblazers & Pioneers” list of professionals who have changed the practice of litigation through the use of innovative legal strategies

    • Named in The Best Lawyers in America for more than 35 years and for many years by Lawdragon as one of America’s 500 leading lawyers

    • Elected a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers
      Recognitions

Recognitions

  • Only firm to be named The American Lawyer’s Labor and Employment Litigation Law Firm of the Year twice

  • Ranked in Band 2 for Nationwide Labor and Employment Law in Chambers USA

  • Ranked in Band 1 for Labor and Employment Law in California and Washington, D.C. in Chambers USA

  • Ranked for Labor and Employment Disputes (including Collective Actions): Defense – The Legal 500

  • Ranked for Workplace and Employment Counseling – The Legal 500

  • Recognized as a top firm for resolving labor and employment disputes, as well as for workforce and employment counseling – The Legal 500 US

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