JGM has a superb track record litigating employment disputes. In a race discrimination and retaliation case, we obtained the largest jury verdict in an employment case in Colorado history. In another case we obtained an even larger recovery for our clients, after several years of protracted litigation against a national financial services firm. Representing employees of public universities, both faculty and administrative, we have obtained seven-figure verdicts for denial of due process and deprivation of statutory rights. We have secured six-figure recoveries, both by judgment and by settlement, for executives wrongfully denied severance and sales personnel wrongly denied commissions under employment contracts. Although our employment litigation practice is plaintiff-focused, we have also achieved considerable successes defending employers against claims of discrimination, wrongful termination, breach of contract, and wage and hour violations.
Outside Employment Counsel
We act as outside employment counsel to employers large and small, for profit and not. Helping our clients ensure legal compliance is the first priority, but once that objective is secured, we understand that risk mitigation must be balanced with business necessity. We place a priority on giving practical advice and delivering user-friendly work product, whether drafting a policy document or advising on personnel actions. For example, while an employee handbook must contain various disclaimers and legally-required policies, its overriding purpose should be to clearly convey the policies and expectations of the employer, and not just to satisfy a lawyer’s checklist.
Noncompetition Agreements and Trade Secrets
JGM has significant experience representing both employers and employees in negotiating and litigating restrictive covenants, such as nondisclosure, nonsolicitation, and noncompetition agreements. The depth of our knowledge in this area is confirmed by the fact that for the past decade, first one and now another of our partners has co-authored the chapter on such agreements in the Practitioner’s Guide to Colorado Employment Law.
The attorneys of JGM have drafted and negotiated scores of executive employment agreements and related documents, in engagements on behalf of both executive and company. Because we are experienced in commercial matters as well as employment law, we appreciate, for example, the impact an unfavorable valuation standard can have on the real value of an equity package offered to an executive. Because we have considerable experience litigating issues arising out of executive and other employment contracts, we understand the real-world impact often overlooked terms can have if the relationship goes south. Our experience in this area includes drafting and advising clients regarding employment contracts with physicians, with heads/executive directors and other employees of private schools, and in connection with the sale of a business.
JGM has represented employees of most of the four-year universities and colleges in Colorado, in both internal administrative proceedings and litigation, on matters ranging from actions for wrongful termination, tenure appeals, and defense against allegations of misconduct. We understand tenure rights, are familiar with university policies and practices concerning review and promotion, and have obtained seven-figure verdicts against Colorado universities for violating the rights of their employees.