LAW OFFICES OF IAN WALLACE PLLC
THE FIRM'S PRACTICE AREAS
Discrimination, Harassment and Retaliation
The firm represents employees with respect to all types of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims and lawsuits.
Federal, state, and/or city laws prohibit discrimination, harassment and retaliation on the basis of race, sex, national origin, citizenship, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, conviction/arrest records and other grounds. These laws also prohibit an employer from retaliating against employees who complain or testify about discrimination and harassment in the workplace.
Discrimination can take many forms, from discriminatory hiring and firing decisions, to discriminatory pay, discipline, promotions, benefits and many other aspects of employment.
Sexual Harassment and Gender-Related Discrimination.
Our attorneys have successfully represented the victims of sexual harassment and discrimination claims relating to gender, such as pregnancy.
Leaves and the Family Medical Leave Act
Under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), covered employees are entitled to up to 12 weeks of continuous or intermittent leave (whether paid or unpaid) for their own serious health condition or that of their immediate family. Many employees are entitled to unpaid or paid pregnancy and maternity/paternity leave or leaves for a disability.
Employment & Severance Agreements
The firm represents individuals in negotiating employment and separation agreements with their employers and enforcing those agreements.
We typically negotiate agreements that dictate the terms of employment (such as compensation, position, title, and benefits). An important service we provide in this respect is advising and representing executive employees regarding non-competition, non-solicitation, and non-disclosure clauses that are commonly inserted into employment agreements and may severely restrict or impede an unsuspecting employee’s ability to earn a living upon separating from their employer. These restrictive covenants, which may prohibit an employee from competing in the same industry and/or geographic area as the employer, can have significant consequences for an employee's career.
Severance or separation agreements sometimes offered to employees are usually one-sided and contain confidentiality, non-disparagement and other provisions that solely protect the employer but not the employees’ interests. Our attorneys will review such agreements and negotiate additional terms that protect the interests of our clients. Typically, these additional terms may include obtaining good employment references, binding employers to confidentiality and non-disparagement terms, obtaining full or partial bonus payments, extending employer-paid medical benefits, as well as limiting the scope of any restrictive covenants.
Federal, state, and city laws protect the rights of employees who report illegal, unsafe, or other improper practices by their employers.
For example, private sector employees are offered some protection under New York's Whistleblower Protection Act for speaking out against unlawful employer conduct that presents a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety.
The federal False Claims Act offers similar protection to employees who blow the whistle on fraud against the federal government. In certain cases, reporting employees can sue the employer on behalf of the government to recover damages for fraud.
Breach of Contract
The firm represents employees whose contractual rights have been violated. We have successfully represented employees who were owed wages, severance pay, bonuses or commissions, including post-separation.
Minimum and Overtime Wage Violations
The firm litigates wage compensation claims for unpaid overtime wages or minimum wages.
Federal and state laws protect employees' rights to be paid wages (regular and overtime) and prohibit employers from making unauthorized wage deductions.
Both Federal and state laws govern minimum wages, overtime pay, equal pay, and the employment of minors.
The firm helps employees enforce their rights to receive contractual and statutory employment benefits, such as vacation leaves, pension benefits, severance benefits, medical and dental benefits.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
Our attorneys have experience representing employees in the mediation of employment disputes or representing those employees in arbitrations. These alternatives to litigation are gaining in popularity and often provide a less costly, private, quicker and less stressful avenue for resolving disputes.
We also represent small and medium-sized companies in suits filed against them by present or former employees.
Our firm is in a relatively unique position in that it can harness years of collective experience litigating against defendants to safeguard and protect our corporate clients’ interests, not only in successfully defending against lawsuits but also in preventing lawsuits from being filed in the first place. Reducing the risk of litigation can be achieved in many ways, but may include implementing well-developed and effective anti-discrimination and harassment policies and procedures, conducting early investigations and implementing prompt remedial measures when an investigation reveals evidence of discrimination or harassment.
Ian F. Wallace is a fluent Spanish and French speaker, which has in particular facilitated his legal representation of numerous Spanish-speaking individuals in their employment and wage claims in Federal and state court. Ian Wallace has also successfully vindicated the rights of undocumented workers to obtain their earned wages.
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