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Practice Areas

Streets of San Francisco

EMPLOYMENT LAW

Employment law covers a complex network of laws that affect the rights of employees in the workplace and control how employers must treat employees, former employees and applicants for employment. Ms. Sayad and Ms. Biren have extensive experience in this ever changing and complex area of the law.

The firm's practice is divided into two areas, Representation of Employees and Representation of Employers. Within these areas, the firm provides employment advice, counseling, representation in litigation and alternative dispute resolution.

  1. REPRESENTATION OF EMPLOYEES:
    • General Advice, Consultation and Representation.

    The firm is available to consult with employees and provide representation regarding employment issues associated with discipline and termination, reductions in force, discrimination, including discrimination based on gender, race, disability, national origin, age, sexual orientation, medical/family leave matters, and related discrimination claims, retaliation and sexual harassment, defamation, pay equity and wage and hour matters. The firm provides representation to employees before the Department of Labor, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

    • Drafting Employment Contracts, Executive Employment & Compensation Agreements, Independent Contractor Agreements, Proprietary Information and Non-Competition Agreements and Severance/Settlement Agreements.

    The firm drafts and negotiates Employment Contracts, Offer Letters, Independent Contractor Agreements, and Severance/Settlement Agreements. Increasingly, in the new economy, employees need employment contracts to provide for their security during employment and upon the termination of employment. We provide advice regarding all terms of employment, including, but not limited to, compensation, benefits, severance agreements and stock and stock option agreements, as well as issues associated with privacy and unfair competition.

    • Alternative Dispute Resolution.

    The firm provides alternative dispute resolution, including arbitration and mediation services for the resolution of employment matters either in litigation or in anticipation of litigation.

    • Representation in Litigation

    The firm represents employees in litigation in state and federal court with regard to claims of wrongful termination, violation of public policy, breach of contract, discrimination based on gender, race, disability, national origin, age, sexual orientation, medical/family leave matters, and related discrimination claims, sexual harassment, retaliation, privacy and unfair competition claims, breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing, defamation and wage and hour claims.

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  2. REPRESENTATION OF EMPLOYERS:
    • Compliance with Anti-discrimination Laws.

    There are a myriad of state and federal anti-discrimination laws that employers must comply with, including, among others, the Fair Employment and Housing Act, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Equal Pay Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 and State and Federal Family and Medical Leave Acts. The firm provides representation before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing.

    • Compliance with Wage and Hour Laws.

    In California, wage and hour laws are complex, ever changing and the new venue for employment litigation. The firm provides guidance regarding these laws and provides representation before the Department of Labor.

    • Drafting of Employee Manuals, Personnel Policies and Procedures, Employment Contracts, Independent Contractor Agreements.

    Employee manuals and personnel policies and procedures are essential tools for employers. They must be carefully drafted to comply with state and federal laws and can provide important guidelines to be followed in many employment situations. In particular, provisions for state and federal family and medical leave and pregnancy disability leave and transfer policies must be carefully drafted. Similarly, employment contracts and independent contractor agreements are necessary to protect both the employer and the employee during and upon the termination of the employment relationship. Contracts can be drafted to protect the employer's trade secrets and proprietary information in the event of termination.

    • Issues of Discipline and Termination, Reductions in Force and Drafting of Severance/Settlement Agreements.

    The firm advises and counsels employers regarding issues of discipline and termination, including obligations when there is a reduction in force. The firm conducts settlement negotiations on behalf of employers and drafts severance and settlement agreements to protect employers from litigation in the event of termination.

    • Issues of Privacy, Trade Secret Protection, Non-Competition Agreements and Unfair Competition.

    In the new economy, there are numerous issues of privacy, including rights surrounding internet and e-mail usage by employees. In addition, employers have concerns about trade secret protection, non-competition, including solicitation of employees and customers, and other forms of unfair competition. The firm's partners provide guidance in these areas.

    • Sexual Harassment and Misconduct Investigations and Training.

    Sexual Harassment claims are on the rise, and the damages flowing from these claims have been unprecedented. Employers have an affirmative obligation to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace and in work related settings. Once on notice of sexual harassment, employers have an obligation to promptly and thoroughly investigate, take remedial action if warranted, protect the alleged victim and prevent future harassment from occurring. The firm provides advice and counseling on avoidance of sexual harassment claims, including conducting training sessions for employees and managers. In addition, the firm advises employers regarding obligations to investigate claims and will investigate sexual harassment and misconduct claims on behalf of employers.

    • Alternative Dispute Resolution.

    The firm provides alternative dispute resolution, including arbitration and mediation services for the resolution of employment matters either in litigation or in anticipation of litigation.

    • Representation in Litigation.

    The firm represents employers in litigation of employment claims in state and federal court. Representation includes claims of wrongful termination, violation of public policy, breach of contract, discrimination based on gender, race, disability, national origin, age, sexual orientation, medical/family leave matters, and related discrimination claims, sexual harassment, retaliation, privacy and unfair competition claims, breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing, defamation and wage and hour claims.

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ALTERNATIVE DISPUTE RESOLUTION

Ms. Sayad has extensive alternative dispute resolution experience and is available to mediate any employment matter, whether in litigation or in anticipation of litigation. She is widely renowned in this area as an effective, well-prepared and experienced mediator. She mediates cases both in California and in other jurisdictions as well. A list of clients is available upon request.

WHITE COLLAR CRIMINAL DEFENSE

Ms. Sayad brings her former experience as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, to her white collar criminal defense practice. This practice is nation-wide and most recently included the successful representation of a former employee of a pharmaceutical company who was the target of a grand jury investigation of a medicare fraud case in Boston.

As a former Assistant United States Attorney, Ms. Sayad has extensive criminal trial and grand jury experience in the local and federal courts in the District of Columbia and is often called upon to represent individuals who are targets and potential targets of grand jury investigations.

Contact Information

Sayad & Biren, PC
Attorneys at Law
505 Montgomery Street, Suite 700
San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: (415) 392-4100
Fax: (415) 392-4001
saybir@sayad-biren.com

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