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Haynes and Boone

Tamara I. Devitt

Tamara I. Devitt

Partner

Expertise

  • Class Action Defense
  • Employment Litigation
  • Labor and Employment
  • Litigation

WSG Practice Industries

Activity

Haynes and Boone
California, U.S.A.

Profile
Tamara Devitt is experienced in counseling and representing employers in all aspects of labor and employment law. She regularly defends employers against claims of discrimination, unlawful harassment, wrongful termination, unfair business practices and wage and hour claims, including class actions and complex litigation.

She advocates for employers in all aspects of employment litigation, including jury and bench trials, arbitration and pre-litigation negotiations, and in administrative tribunals, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, Department of Labor and California Labor Commissioner.

Tamara also advises and counsels employers on compliance, including hiring, discipline and termination practices, wage and hour issues, misconduct investigations (i.e., harassment, workplace violence, embezzlement), leaves of absence, reasonable accommodation of employees with disabilities, policies and procedures and employment agreements.

She regularly conducts management training and lectures on labor and employment issues.

Tamara joined the firm from a national labor and employment boutique, where she exclusively represented management and also served as a regional managing partner. Before becoming an employment lawyer, Tamara worked for nine years in human resources, where she handled employee relations, leaves of absence and benefits.

Bar Admissions

California

Education

J.D., DePaul University College of Law, 2000
B.S., DePaul University, 1993
Areas of Practice

Class Action Defense | Employment Litigation | Labor and Employment | Litigation | Social Media | Wage and Hour Litigation

Professional Career

Significant Accomplishments

Obtained a complete defense award in arbitration on behalf of an oil well services company in disability discrimination case where the plaintiff sought over a million dollars in damages. The plaintiff alleged wrongful termination because of his alleged disability, failure to provide reasonable accommodation and retaliation;

Represented company in wage and hour class action of putative class of education coaches who alleged they were misclassified under the administrative exemption and sought unpaid overtime wages, meal and rest period penalties. Successfully objected to the plaintiff's pre-certification motion for summary judgment as premature and postured the case for reasonable settlement;

Awarded complete summary judgment by a Ventura County Superior Court judge in wrongful termination case, where the plaintiff alleged the defendant failed to hire him because of an alleged disability;

Convinced a California state court to dismiss with prejudice the plaintiff's wrongful termination lawsuit for his delay in participating in arbitration and failure to prosecute his case;

Represented an oil well services company in a wage and hour class action in all aspects of litigation through arbitration. The putative class consisted of more than 2500 former and current employees alleging unpaid travel time, overtime wages and denial of meal and rest breaks;

Successfully defended maintenance and landscaping company in wage and hour class action where the putative class of more than 2000 current and former employees sought unpaid wages, and meal and rest period penalties. The matter settled favorably after the plaintiff's deposition revealed the likelihood of individualized issues and significant risk that certification would be denied;

Represented company in action under the Fair Credit Reporting Act and California Consumer Credit Reporting Agencies Act;

Obtained workplace violence temporary restraining order and permanent injunction against former customer where the defendant threatened harm to a company employee;

Represented landscaping design company in sexual harassment action brought by current employee;

Represented various clients before DFEH and EEOC and achieved no cause findings against employees who brought state and federal discrimination charges;

Convinced federal district court to dismiss a 20-year employee's wrongful termination lawsuit against municipality on grounds that the plaintiff failed to exhaust his internal administrative remedies.
Articles

Will California be the First State to Issue Workplace Violence Rules? Probably, yes.
Haynes and Boone, March 2018

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) held an advisory meeting in January to solicit input and comments on their proposed draft rules for workplace violence prevention that would apply to nearly all California employers. Passage of these standards would make California the first state to issue workplace violence rules which would surpass federal protections...

2016 California Labor and Employment Update
Haynes and Boone, February 2017

2016 California Labor and Employment Legislation SB 3 Raises California's Minimum Wage SB 3 will increase the state minimum wage to $15.00 per hour over the next six years. The bill sets two minimum wage rate hikes, depending on whether an employer has 26 or more, or 25 or fewer, employees. All employers in the state must comply with the new minimum wage law...

WSG's members are independent firms and are not affiliated in the joint practice of professional services. Each member exercises its own individual judgments on all client matters.

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