Webcast Briefing: Key Employee Departures to Competitors

July 16, 2009

How to Find and Use Smoking Gun Evidence to Protect Your Business

Our Program:
Gibson Dunn partners Jessica Brown, Karl Nelson and Jason Schwartz are joined by Stroz Friedberg Managing Director Seth Berman to address the legal and practical steps to prevent and/or restrict the loss of key employees to a competitor. The seminar also includes a discussion of the vital role played by computer forensics in obtaining the "smoking gun" evidence necessary to obtain injunctive relief or settlement on favorable terms.

The seminar will make use of a case study to stimulate a lively and informative discussion regarding the practical, commercial, legal and investigatory steps that an employer should take on first learning of the competitive activity and in order to obtain relief from the courts. (This seminar focuses on U.S. law and is a compliment to our earlier seminar on U.K. law.)

Our Panelists:
Jason Schwartz Jason is a partner with Gibson Dunn & Crutchers Labor and Employment Practice Group in the Washington, D.C. office.  He was recently recognized as a recommended lawyer in labor and employment litigation and workplace and employment law counseling by The Legal 500 US.  His practice includes the full range of labor and employment matters, including those involving non-competition agreements and trade secrets, wage-hour and discrimination laws, Sarbanes-Oxley and other whistleblower protection laws, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), and the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA).  He has litigated employment matters in state and federal courts and administrative forums throughout the country, as well as in arbitration, and has represented clients before federal, state and local regulatory agencies.  He recently testified before Congress regarding OSHA enforcement programs on behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.  Mr. Schwartzs recent representative matters include the defense of national employers in wage-hour class actions, the defense of a major automaker in age, race, gender and disability discrimination and ERISA litigation arising from a reduction in force, and the representation of numerous companies in high-stakes non-compete and trade secrets disputes.  He has also successfully tried several sensitive whistleblower matters for major national employers, and he prevailed in a precedent-setting Labor Department appeal of one of the first Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower cases to proceed to trial.  

Karl G. Nelson Karl Nelson is the partner-in-charge of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher’s Dallas office and a member of the firm’s Labor and Employment, Employee Benefits, and Executive Compensation Practice Groups. He is also co-chair of the firm’s Privacy and Data Security Practice Group.  Mr. Nelson counsels and represents clients in all aspects of federal and state employment regulation, labor relations, and compensation and benefits law.  He has extensive experience defending complex labor and benefit matters, including class and collective actions under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act.  He has successfully defended clients against claims of age, race, disability and gender discrimination, sexual harassment, "whistle-blower" retaliation, and wrongful discharge under state common law, and he regularly advises and represents clients in connection with trade secret, competition, and employee-raiding issues. Mr. Nelson also has extensive experience representing clients before federal and state administrative agencies.  He has successfully represented employers before the Department of Labor in complex wage and hour and pension benefits investigations and in Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower retaliation cases, as well as before the EEOC in connection with charges of individual and class-wide discrimination. Mr. Nelson also frequently assists clients in conducting internal investigations of high-risk and high-profile matters such as those involving potential misconduct by senior executives and corporate officers and allegations of whistle-blowing under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and similar laws.  

Jessica Brown Jessica is a partner in the Denver office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher. A member of the firm’s Class Action, Labor and Employment, and Privacy and Data Security Practice Groups, she has been ranked by Chambers USA for several years consecutively as one of "America’s Leading Lawyers for Labor & Employment." In addition, she was named one of Denver’s "Forty Under 40" by the Denver Business Journal. Ms. Brown has substantial experience defending nation-wide and state-wide class action lawsuits alleging, for example, gender discrimination under Title VII, failure to permit facility access under the Americans with Disabilities Act, and failure to pay overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act. She also has represented companies charged with fraud, breaches of fiduciary duty, and violations of securities and consumer protection laws on a class-wide basis.In addition, Ms. Brown has tried and mediated non-class claims before federal judges and arbitrators across the country involving allegations of sexual harassment, wrongful discharge, violations of noncompete agreements, discrimination and retaliation.

Seth Berman Seth P. Berman serves as Managing Director and Deputy General Counsel head of Stroz Friedberg’s Boston and London offices. In that capacity, Mr. Berman supervises digital forensics, cyber-crime investigations, and electronic discovery assignments involving the collection of electronic data in criminal, civil, regulatory, and internal corporate matters. Mr. Berman also oversees computer investigations involving data breaches, securities fraud, identity theft, employee misconduct, and theft of trade secrets. Prior to joining Stroz Friedberg, Mr. Berman was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts where he served in the Economic Crimes Unit.