Employment Advice & Counseling

Payne & Fears LLP labor and employment attorneys recognize that sometimes the best legal defense is preventing employment litigation.  Our attorneys regularly counsel employers on the legal implications of personnel decisions, the latest court cases, statutory and regulatory requirements and legal trends to ensure that they remain in compliance with state and federal laws and avoid unnecessary litigation. 

Our attorneys are also experienced in developing management training programs and employee education programs, creating effective employee manuals, implementing union avoidance strategies and providing immigration advice.

We have significant experience providing legal counseling on important personnel issues, including:

  • Drafting employee handbooks, personnel policies, manuals and employment contracts
  • Effective and lawful hiring processes, including interviews and background checks
  • Overtime classification, wage payment practices and compliance with California and federal wage-and-hour laws
  • Investigation and remedy of illegal harassment allegations
  • Proper selection and processing of workforce reductions
  • Structuring and implementing voluntary early retirement and downsizing programs
  • Discipline, discharge and severance
  • Protection of trade secrets as employees depart, and avoidance of litigation when hiring employees from competitors
  • Legal obligations to grant leaves of absence and otherwise accommodate disabilities, balanced against the employer's ability to regulate attendance and performance
  • Investigations of workplace violence and establishment of appropriate protective measures
  • Employee privacy protections

Training and Education Programs

We regularly provide training and educational programs for lawyers, senior management, human resources professionals, and other members of management and supervision. These programs are specifically structured to be responsive to the needs of particular clients. The subjects or practice areas in which we most frequently present such programs include avoidance of litigation - such as wrongful termination, sexual harassment, and employment discrimination – equal employment opportunity, union avoidance, and discharge/discipline.

Recent training topics include:

  • Effective Internal Investigations
  • Leaves of Absence and the Interactive Process
  • Mental Health in the Workplace
  • Key Wage-and-Hour Pitfalls
  • Pay Equity Compliance in the Workplace
  • Workplace Violence and Prevention

Our firm is a certified provider with the State Bar of California for Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit, Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) for SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP credit, and HR Certification Institute (HRCI) credit.