Employment and Labor Law
The employment and labor law practice at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) includes a full range of services, including employee benefits, union negotiations, wrongful discharge and discrimination claims, ADA and FMLA compliance issues, workforce reductions, litigation defense representation, alternative dispute resolution, and regulatory compliance services. Public and private organizations turn to our expert legal team for assistance with navigating and complying with this complex area of law.
EEOC and MDCR Charges
Our Firm’s positive representation of clients in federal and state civil rights charges before the Equal Employment and Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Michigan Department of Civil Rights (MDCR) gives our lawyers the ability to respond rapidly to the particular needs of employers. Issues handled by attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) include sex, race, age, religious, ethnic, and disability discrimination/ harassment under the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Family and Medical Leave Act. Additionally, CMDA represents clients at the state level on Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights claims and Persons with Disabilities Act claims.
Attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) aggressively defend employers from claims of wrongful discharge, discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment, Family Medical Leave Act and Americans with Disabilities Act. Our attorneys provide representation before state, federal, and governmental administrative agencies. CMDA enjoys a very high success rate for dismissals on motions supported by sound yet creative legal arguments. We are tenacious in our quest to obtain admissions from the opposing party employing effective cross examination strategies during depositions. We work closely with our clients to search out evidence supportive to the defense.
If the matter must be decided by a jury, our imaginative team of trial attorneys has successfully obtained favorable jury verdicts in the majority of our cases. When the liability exposure is unfavorable, our lawyers work to achieve closure with the most economical outcome.
Additionally, we are sensitive to the needs of our clients to establish and maintain good public relations. We consult with our clients on these needs and work with them to create strategies to address the issues.
Employment Litigation: Reducing the Risk
Preventing employment litigation is a sound, long-term business strategy. Attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) specializes in helping employers develop and implement proactive employment policies and handbooks to guard against litigation. Our experienced and knowledgeable attorneys routinely review, research, and certify client documentation, including drug and alcohol policies, HIPAA, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act policies.
Other tools aimed at preventing employment litigation include regularly providing clients with legal update summaries, such as EEOC’s recently-released guidelines for Religious Garb and Grooming in the Workplace: Rights and Responsibilities and frequently offering training and conducting educational seminars on a variety of legal topics. Taking proactive steps now, can avoid liability and costly litigation in the future.
We pride ourselves on being available to assist clients with virtually any employment litigation issue that may arise, including:
- Work place violence issues
- Sexual harassment
- Race, religion and gender discrimination
- Internal investigations
- Americans with Disabilities Act
- Family and Medical Leave Act
- Wage and hour issues
- DOL compliance
- Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Open Meetings Act (OMA)
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Open Meetings Act (OMA)
Attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) have in-depth knowledge of both the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the Open Meetings Act (OMA) and have defended clients in cases stemming from alleged violations.
CMDA has prepared hundreds of responses to FOIA requests for our clients. Our attorneys have knowledge of the explicit requirements of FOIA, including what should be included in FOIA request responses, what must be disclosed, what should be redacted, and what records are exempt from disclosure.
CMDA regularly assists clients in determining how to operate within the OMA requirements. We explain to clients when closed meetings may be had, what information may be discussed, and how the minutes from those meetings must be prepared and stored.
Because of our knowledge in these areas, CMDA offers educational training and seminars to inform and educate clients on the Freedom of Information Act and the Open Meetings Act, as well as advising clients on how to prevent litigation. We routinely give on-site, complementary seminars and presentations to our clients and have authored handbooks on these topics, such as 2013 Open Meetings Act Handbook.
Attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) regularly and vigorously defend governmental entities in individual and group grievance arbitration. Our Firm is committed to assisting clients during the internal processing of grievances and prior to the hearing stage. Our goal is to promote cooperative labor management relations while preserving economic resources through facilitation mediation. We have attorneys certified under the Michigan Supreme Court’s Mediator Training Program who employ their skills in this area.
Unfair Labor Practice Charges before Administrative Agencies
Our Firm has practiced extensively before administrative agencies, including the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC), National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA), Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), and federal and state departments of labor.
Our representation of clients before the MERC includes unfair labor practice charges against governmental entities, community colleges, and mental health authorities. Our specialized knowledge and skill that makes us successful at MERC, mirrors our winning experience at the NLRB on the private sector side. Our attorneys have represented auto suppliers, grocery chains, distributors, and manufacturers in defeating charges alleging discharges for union activities, alleged refusals to bargain after implementation of last best offer, violations of employees’ rights to engage in protected concerted activities in union campaigns, and identification of appropriate bargaining units.
Union Negotiations and Labor Contract Administration
Attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) negotiate collective bargaining agreements for governmental entities, including without limitation contracts for police, firefighters, laborers, dispatchers, supervisors, managers, and administrative staff. Our goal is to facilitate a cooperative partnership between our clients and their various unions for optimum results using an interest-based bargaining approach. We attempt to identify the real underlying concerns of the parties through joint problem solving. Our skilled negotiators offer innovative “out of the box” approaches to matters such as health insurance, pensions, and buy-outs, which have recently been of prominent concern to our clients. These skills traverse to both the public and private sector to offer a broad range of solutions and options while developing negotiation strategies with management. We take a tough line approach when necessary and successfully implement last best offers after bargaining to impasse.
CMDA assist clients with achieving their objectives in all aspects of collective bargaining and contract administration, including:
- Collective bargaining strategy development
- Chief spokesperson
- Mediation representation
- Interest based bargaining
- Contract interpretations
- Grievance arbitrations
- Strike and related legal matters
- Public relations issues
WHISTLE-BLOWER Protection Act
Any employee who has been terminated can claim they were fired for inappropriate reasons, including whistleblowing. Attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) understand how these types of claims can negatively affect a company’s reputation and operations, which is why we use our experience to aggressively fight these charges and protect the face of the company.
Our lawyers analyze current company policies and procedures to ensure clients obtain the necessary materials to best protect their rights should a whistle-blower claim arise. Creating affirmative defenses now can avoid future liability down the road.
Workers’ Compensation Claims
In any economy, layoffs are inevitable. Along with layoffs comes the filing of workers’ compensation claims. Attorneys at Cummings, McClorey, Davis & Acho, P.L.C. (CMDA) have a long and established history of successfully representing employers facing workers’ compensation claims.
Our Firm assists clients with plant/company closings and layoffs and provides guidance on effective ways to reduce the number of claims filed by displaced employees. Our lawyers have extensive experience defending claims involving complex injuries and medical issues. We have strong working relationships with claims adjusters and work aggressively to provide closure to cases when prudent to do so. Additionally, our Firm provides clients with an analysis of each workers’ compensation claim in an effort to avoid similar injuries and claims in the future.