Overview

Mike represents management in all aspects of labor and employment law, including representing employers in court, arbitrations, administrative proceedings, and other disputes. He advises companies, both large and small, on human resources issues and litigation prevention, including advice on terminations, compliance with employment laws, workplace investigations and the preparation of policies and employment agreements. Mike prides himself on providing strategic and practical advice to minimize the risk of employment litigation. Should litigation arise, Mike is a prepared, practical and aggressive advocate for his clients. He has successfully represented employers in single plaintiff and class/collective actions in state and federal courts, arbitration matters, and before administrative agencies throughout the country.

Practices

    • Obtained numerous defense verdicts for employers in various venues and proceedings, including state and federal courts, and before administrative agencies and arbitrators.
    • Obtained numerous dispositive rulings on behalf of employers in state and federal courts.
    • Obtained numerous dismissals and defense determinations from state and federal agencies, including the EEOC, state Fair Employment Practices agencies, the NLRB, the DOL, and others.
    • Regularly counsels and represents clients in extremely high risk matters, including executive terminations, multi-plaintiff and class action litigation, and class investigations by governmental agencies, including the EEOC and DOL.
    • Regularly defends employers against all manner of employment claims, including claims relating to federal and state discrimination laws, the FMLA, the FLSA, breach of fiduciary duty, tort claims and trade secret and restrictive covenant cases.
  • Education

    • University of Notre Dame, J.D., summa cum laude, 1992
    • Duke University, A.B., 1988

    Admissions

    • Supreme Court of the U.S.
    • State of Ohio
    • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit, Seventh Circuit
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio, Southern District of Ohio and Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • Professional Affiliations

    • Cleveland Employment American Inn of Court—President (2016-2018)
    • Ohio State Bar Association—Member
    • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association—Member
    • Defense Research Institute—Member

    Community Involvement

    • Boys & Girls Clubs of Cleveland—Board Member, HR Committee (January 2017-Present)
    • Cleveland Leadership Center, Civic Leadership Institute (Class of 2014)
    • United Methodist Church, North Coast District—District Superintendency Committee
    • United Way of Greater Cleveland—Risk Management Committee (2012-2017)
    • Named Best Lawyers’ “Lawyer of the Year” in Cleveland in Litigation-Labor and Employment (2019)
    • Named to Chambers USA: America’s Guide to Leading Lawyers for Business in the area of Labor and Employment (2017-2018)
    • Named to The Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Employment Law-Management and Litigation-Labor and Employment (2014-2019)
    • Named to the Ohio Super Lawyers list (2005-2006, 2009-2018)
    • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated—Martindale-Hubbell
    • Recipient of the Client Choice Award, and the exclusive winner in the Employment & Labor category for the state of Ohio—Lexology and International Law Office (2014)
    • Recipient of the Fairbaugh Prize for High Scholarship in Law—University of Notre Dame School of Law
    • Notre Dame Law Review—Lead Note Editor (1991-1992)
    • "Gray Area: Romance in the Workplace and Avoiding Claims of Harassment," Frantz Ward Labor and Employment Law Seminar, Cleveland, OH (May 2018)
    • "HR Practices for Avoiding Employment Claims," Ohio CUPA-HR Spring Conference, Ada, OH (April 2018)
    • "Hot Topics in NEO Workplaces: Medical Marijuana; LGBT Issues; and Myths/Realities," ERC "Ask the Expert," Cleveland, OH (September 2017)
    • Mike regularly presents and trains on labor and employment topics, including engagements for industry groups, human resources professionals, bar associations, fellow practitioners, and clients. Recent presentation and webinar topics include:
      1. EEO and Harrassment Laws
      2. Family and Medical Leave Act
      3. Wage and Hour Laws
      4. Independent Contractor Issues
      5. Noncompete Agreements
      6. Performance Management
      7. Workplace Violence Issues
      8. General Supervisory and Employment Law Training
      9. Human Resources, Attorney-Client Privilege and the Work-Product Doctrine