Individual & Class Action Litigation

Large and small businesses alike face the constant threat of individual and class action lawsuits stemming from employment and labor disputes. We defend our clients in a variety of areas ranging from issues related to restrictive covenants like non-compete agreements to discrimination claims to wage and hour proceedings. With a long track record of successfully defending employers, the team of lawyers at McMahon Berger helps clients navigate the litigation process while protecting their business interests. Our class action and litigation attorneys work to minimize costs, secure consistent results, and get employers back to business where they belong.

Put 60 Years of Employment and Labor Expertise on Your Side

Our firm, based in St. Louis, Missouri, represents businesses in litigation before state and federal courts, before administrative agencies, and in arbitration. Our firm is prepared to vigorously defend your case every step of the way:

  • Investigation of claims and disputes
  • Production and review of documents
  • Eliminating improper parties
  • Responding to shortened timelines
  • Coordinating an organized case management system
  • Pragmatic problem-solving before litigation begins
  • Energetic defense throughout the trial and appeals process
Turn to McMahon Berger for experienced representation across all aspects of individual and class action litigation.
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Appellate Practice
  • Arbitration
  • Class Action Litigation
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Employment Law Defense Litigation
  • ERISA & Benefit Plan Litigation
  • Labor Litigation
  • Restrictive Covenants
  • Unfair Competition & Trade Secret Litigation
  • Wage & Hour Litigation
  • Whistleblower & Retaliation Litigation

Alternative Dispute Resolution

For over 60 years, McMahon Berger has successfully vindicated employers’ rights in alternative dispute resolution proceedings. Our attorneys help clients reach a swifter and often less expensive conclusion versus proceeding all the way to trial.

Resolve Matters Without Going to Court

Mediation is often an effective way to resolve a matter instead of placing it in the hands of a jury. The EEOC and other agencies often ask parties whether they want to mediate disputes before a charge of discrimination is investigated. Arbitration is another method used by employers with union workforces, as well as other parties, to resolve differences without going to court.

Court-Ordered Mediation

Federal courts often mandate that parties go to mediation at some point during a lawsuit. At McMahon Berger, our attorneys are prepared to protect employers’ rights throughout the process.

Appellate Practice

Sometimes it’s necessary to defend good results in the trial courts or to secure reversals of unfavorable decisions. McMahon Berger engages in appellate work on behalf of employers in both state and federal courts of appeals.

Diligent Representation Every Step of the Way

Our attorneys are prepared to represent clients from the agency or trial court level all the way through any required appellate work. We handle all aspects of the appellate process, including brief writing and oral arguments.

An Experienced Team on Your Side

McMahon Berger’s lawyers have represented clients before numerous federal and state appellate courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court. Our firm includes former law clerks who served for federal and state courts. That gives us a thorough understanding of the types of arguments and writing expected by judges at the appellate level.

Arbitration

McMahon Berger has successfully represented employers in arbitration proceedings nationwide. Our attorneys help clients determine whether arbitration is mandatory or appropriate. We also provide experienced representation throughout the process.

Laws Governing Arbitration

Federal statutes of significance involving arbitration include the Federal Arbitration Act, the Labor Management Relations Act, and the Railway Labor Act. State arbitration law is derived from both state common law and legislation.

How Arbitration Works

Arbitration is a method for resolving a dispute by using an impartial arbitrator. The arbitrator is agreed upon by the parties and hears both sides of the matter outside of a courtroom. His or her decision will be final and binding on both parties. Arbitration is typically used in the following circumstances:

  • An arbitration agreement is in place
  • A collective bargaining agreement or other contract contains an arbitration clause
  • Arbitration is mandated by law for a particular dispute

The Arbitration Process

McMahon Berger assists clients in union and non-union settings with all aspects of arbitration:

  • Drafting and negotiating arbitration agreements
  • Enforcing arbitration agreements
  • Selecting an impartial arbitrator
  • Representing clients at arbitration hearings
  • Drafting post-hearing briefs

Class Action Litigation

McMahon Berger vigorously defends employers against the liability and expense of class action lawsuits filed by employees. Our attorneys have successfully stopped many class actions before they got started. We have also obtained numerous court rulings that a dispute was not suitable for class-wide adjudication.

Time Is of the Essence

If you as an employer suspect that multiple employees may be preparing to file a class action lawsuit, reach out to McMahon Berger immediately. Most employers know that class action litigation is daunting – both in terms of defense costs and potential liability. Engaging defense counsel as quickly as possible allows more time for all avenues of defense to be thoroughly explored.

Commercial Litigation

McMahon Berger represents organizations in litigation that doesn’t involve a claim by an employee. Our attorneys have handled countless commercial, shareholder, member, breach of contract, and other types of disputes on behalf of our clients.

Experienced Commercial Attorneys

McMahon Berger assists with disputes among company owners requiring the parties to seek representation. These may include derivative claims, member disputes, shareholder disputes, or similar matters. We also represent clients facing claims from another company, such as a breach-of-contract claim or something similar.

Employment Law Defense Litigation

McMahon Berger’s employment attorneys are skilled advocates with vast litigation experience and knowledge of the law. When it comes to litigation, we develop a strategy that is tailored to our clients’ needs and desired outcomes. We place our clients in the best possible position for success.

Detail-Driven Representation

To be the best advocates for our clients, McMahon Berger focuses on the minute aspects of our clients’ businesses. Our attorneys draw from a wealth of in-depth knowledge of the complex and ever-changing state, local, and federal employment laws. We are committed to strong communication and making sure employers understand their options throughout the process. We take the time to educate clients on what each potential path may bring.

Managing the Costs of Litigation

McMahon Berger understands that being sued by an employee or a former employee may have costs beyond the immediate financial impact of litigation. For example, derivative litigation and reputational costs in and out of the workplace are often just as concerning as the lawsuit itself. We partner with clients to minimize these and other prospective costs associated with the public nature of litigation.

ERISA & Benefit Plan Litigation

McMahon Berger has successfully represented many employers who have found themselves embroiled in litigation over employee benefits. This area of law requires extensive in-depth understanding of both ERISA and litigation.

Benefit-Related Disputes

The attorneys at McMahon Berger are prepared to defend employers facing a number of different types of benefit-related lawsuits:

  • 401(k) or other pension benefits
  • Multi-employer pension liability
  • Individual disability claims
  • COBRA claims
  • ERISA 510 interference claims
  • Fiduciary claims
  • Other types of ERISA litigation

Labor Litigation

McMahon Berger has been successfully representing employers in traditional labor disputes before the NLRB for over 60 years.

Charges of Unfair Labor Practices

We work with clients to investigate and respond to unfair labor practice charges. Among other things, such charges may include:

  • Unlawful termination
  • Retaliation for engaging in protected conduct
  • Failure to bargain in good faith
  • Interfering with employees’ rights under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act

Employer Defense

McMahon Berger vigorously defends employers involved in unfair labor practice proceedings. This includes matters appearing before an Administrative Law Judge, the National Labor Relations Board, and the U.S. Court of Appeals.

NLRB Representation Proceedings

Our attorneys aggressively represent employers in NLRB representation proceedings. We assist clients with unit determinations, objections, challenged ballots, and other unit and representation disputes.

Restrictive Covenants

The attorneys at McMahon Berger are experienced in drafting, reviewing, enforcing, and defending non-compete and non-solicitation agreements.

Drafting Non-Compete & Non-Solicitation Agreements

Restrictive covenants, including non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, can be an effective tool for employers to retain talent. They also help to safeguard investments in personnel, business contacts, and intellectual property.

McMahon Berger tailors agreements to the specific needs of your business, in the places where your company operates. State law generally disfavors policies that inhibit economic autonomy, so only a properly drafted restrictive covenant will survive a challenge in court.

Impact on Hiring

We assist employers who have hired or wish to hire an employee who is subject to an illegal or overbroad restrictive covenant. In those situations, our attorneys provide careful analysis to limit the client’s legal and financial exposure.

Resolving Disputes

Our attorneys are experienced at negotiating and, if necessary, litigating any disputes that arise regarding restrictive covenants. These agreements are governed almost entirely by state law. While most states allow at least some forms of restrictive covenants, the specific limitations vary greatly. Some states may accept portions of an overbroad restrictive covenant, while others will reject a non-compliant agreement entirely.

Unfair Competition & Trade Secret Litigation

McMahon Berger has significant experience litigating non-competition, non-solicitation, and breach of confidentiality obligations, as well as theft of trade secret cases.

Enforcing Agreements

Our attorneys assist employers with enforcement of restrictive covenants, such as non-competition or non-solicitation covenants, and with non-disclosure agreements. We also help in pursuing employees who have stolen trade secrets.

Post-Hire Disputes

McMahon Berger represents employers who are brought into litigation alleging tortious interference with contract. This often occurs when the employer finds out too late that they have hired an employee who is bound by a restrictive covenant.

Wage & Hour Litigation

The law firm of McMahon Berger has been advising and representing employers in wage and hour litigation for over 60 years, both individual claims and those brought in a collective or class action.

A Complicated Regulatory Landscape

Employers must promptly retain counsel if they are facing a wage and hour enforcement investigation or lawsuit. That’s because of the ever-growing myriad of overlapping state and federal wage and hour obligations – many of which are extremely technical. This growing complexity has led to a steady rise in wage and hour litigation over the past decade. It now represents one of the largest potential liabilities for employers across all industries.

Enforcement Actions

McMahon Berger represents clients who are facing enforcement actions from the U.S. Department of Labor or from a state agency. These investigations often review a broad variety of pay practices and frequently result in a finding of back-wages for some employees. Repeated violations may also cause an enforcement action and the assessment of significant civil monetary penalties.

Lawsuits

Wage and hour litigation brought by employees often involves even more significant potential liability. Our attorneys are prepared to vigorously defend clients against the many complicating factors that often characterize these lawsuits.

  • Wage and hour lawsuits are rarely brought by a single employee. They are often collective and/or class actions seeking to include all employees affected by the organization’s wage and hour practices.
  • State and federal laws often allow employees to seek recovery or penalties for violations alleged over several years.
  • Employees can often recover double, and in some cases triple, the damages they claim to have suffered.
  • Last, but far from least, most wage and hour statutes make employers liable for attorneys’ fees if the employee successfully proves a violation.

Whistleblower & Retaliation Litigation

McMahon Berger has a substantial track record in handling cases involving whistleblowers and retaliation allegations.

A Growing Liability Risk

Our attorneys represent employers in cases filed by whistleblowers. We also defend clients against plaintiffs alleging retaliation for making complaints in the workplace or to a government agency. These types of cases demand a thorough understanding of both the client’s business and the law under which the plaintiff is proceeding.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

For over 60 years, McMahon Berger has successfully vindicated employers’ rights in alternative dispute resolution proceedings. Our attorneys help clients reach a swifter and often less expensive conclusion versus proceeding all the way to trial.

Resolve Matters Without Going to Court

Mediation is often an effective way to resolve a matter instead of placing it in the hands of a jury. The EEOC and other agencies often ask parties whether they want to mediate disputes before a charge of discrimination is investigated. Arbitration is another method used by employers with union workforces, as well as other parties, to resolve differences without going to court.

Court-Ordered Mediation

Federal courts often mandate that parties go to mediation at some point during a lawsuit. At McMahon Berger, our attorneys are prepared to protect employers’ rights throughout the process.

Appellate Practice

Sometimes it’s necessary to defend good results in the trial courts or to secure reversals of unfavorable decisions. McMahon Berger engages in appellate work on behalf of employers in both state and federal courts of appeals.

Diligent Representation Every Step of the Way

Our attorneys are prepared to represent clients from the agency or trial court level all the way through any required appellate work. We handle all aspects of the appellate process, including brief writing and oral arguments.

An Experienced Team on Your Side

McMahon Berger’s lawyers have represented clients before numerous federal and state appellate courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court. Our firm includes former law clerks who served for federal and state courts. That gives us a thorough understanding of the types of arguments and writing expected by judges at the appellate level.

Arbitration

McMahon Berger has successfully represented employers in arbitration proceedings nationwide. Our attorneys help clients determine whether arbitration is mandatory or appropriate. We also provide experienced representation throughout the process.

Laws Governing Arbitration

Federal statutes of significance involving arbitration include the Federal Arbitration Act, the Labor Management Relations Act, and the Railway Labor Act. State arbitration law is derived from both state common law and legislation.

How Arbitration Works

Arbitration is a method for resolving a dispute by using an impartial arbitrator. The arbitrator is agreed upon by the parties and hears both sides of the matter outside of a courtroom. His or her decision will be final and binding on both parties. Arbitration is typically used in the following circumstances:

  • An arbitration agreement is in place
  • A collective bargaining agreement or other contract contains an arbitration clause
  • Arbitration is mandated by law for a particular dispute

The Arbitration Process

McMahon Berger assists clients in union and non-union settings with all aspects of arbitration:

  • Drafting and negotiating arbitration agreements
  • Enforcing arbitration agreements
  • Selecting an impartial arbitrator
  • Representing clients at arbitration hearings
  • Drafting post-hearing briefs

Class Action Litigation

McMahon Berger vigorously defends employers against the liability and expense of class action lawsuits filed by employees. Our attorneys have successfully stopped many class actions before they got started. We have also obtained numerous court rulings that a dispute was not suitable for class-wide adjudication.

Time Is of the Essence

If you as an employer suspect that multiple employees may be preparing to file a class action lawsuit, reach out to McMahon Berger immediately. Most employers know that class action litigation is daunting – both in terms of defense costs and potential liability. Engaging defense counsel as quickly as possible allows more time for all avenues of defense to be thoroughly explored.

Commercial Litigation

McMahon Berger represents organizations in litigation that doesn’t involve a claim by an employee. Our attorneys have handled countless commercial, shareholder, member, breach of contract, and other types of disputes on behalf of our clients.

Experienced Commercial Attorneys

McMahon Berger assists with disputes among company owners requiring the parties to seek representation. These may include derivative claims, member disputes, shareholder disputes, or similar matters. We also represent clients facing claims from another company, such as a breach-of-contract claim or something similar.

Employment Law Defense Litigation

McMahon Berger’s employment attorneys are skilled advocates with vast litigation experience and knowledge of the law. When it comes to litigation, we develop a strategy that is tailored to our clients’ needs and desired outcomes. We place our clients in the best possible position for success.

Detail-Driven Representation

To be the best advocates for our clients, McMahon Berger focuses on the minute aspects of our clients’ businesses. Our attorneys draw from a wealth of in-depth knowledge of the complex and ever-changing state, local, and federal employment laws. We are committed to strong communication and making sure employers understand their options throughout the process. We take the time to educate clients on what each potential path may bring.

Managing the Costs of Litigation

McMahon Berger understands that being sued by an employee or a former employee may have costs beyond the immediate financial impact of litigation. For example, derivative litigation and reputational costs in and out of the workplace are often just as concerning as the lawsuit itself. We partner with clients to minimize these and other prospective costs associated with the public nature of litigation.

ERISA & Benefit Plan Litigation

McMahon Berger has successfully represented many employers who have found themselves embroiled in litigation over employee benefits. This area of law requires extensive in-depth understanding of both ERISA and litigation.

Benefit-Related Disputes

The attorneys at McMahon Berger are prepared to defend employers facing a number of different types of benefit-related lawsuits:

  • 401(k) or other pension benefits
  • Multi-employer pension liability
  • Individual disability claims
  • COBRA claims
  • ERISA 510 interference claims
  • Fiduciary claims
  • Other types of ERISA litigation

Labor Litigation

McMahon Berger has been successfully representing employers in traditional labor disputes before the NLRB for over 60 years.

Charges of Unfair Labor Practices

We work with clients to investigate and respond to unfair labor practice charges. Among other things, such charges may include:

  • Unlawful termination
  • Retaliation for engaging in protected conduct
  • Failure to bargain in good faith
  • Interfering with employees’ rights under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act

Employer Defense

McMahon Berger vigorously defends employers involved in unfair labor practice proceedings. This includes matters appearing before an Administrative Law Judge, the National Labor Relations Board, and the U.S. Court of Appeals.

NLRB Representation Proceedings

Our attorneys aggressively represent employers in NLRB representation proceedings. We assist clients with unit determinations, objections, challenged ballots, and other unit and representation disputes.

Restrictive Covenants

The attorneys at McMahon Berger are experienced in drafting, reviewing, enforcing, and defending non-compete and non-solicitation agreements.

Drafting Non-Compete & Non-Solicitation Agreements

Restrictive covenants, including non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, can be an effective tool for employers to retain talent. They also help to safeguard investments in personnel, business contacts, and intellectual property.

McMahon Berger tailors agreements to the specific needs of your business, in the places where your company operates. State law generally disfavors policies that inhibit economic autonomy, so only a properly drafted restrictive covenant will survive a challenge in court.

Impact on Hiring

We assist employers who have hired or wish to hire an employee who is subject to an illegal or overbroad restrictive covenant. In those situations, our attorneys provide careful analysis to limit the client’s legal and financial exposure.

Resolving Disputes

Our attorneys are experienced at negotiating and, if necessary, litigating any disputes that arise regarding restrictive covenants. These agreements are governed almost entirely by state law. While most states allow at least some forms of restrictive covenants, the specific limitations vary greatly. Some states may accept portions of an overbroad restrictive covenant, while others will reject a non-compliant agreement entirely.

Unfair Competition & Trade Secret Litigation

McMahon Berger has significant experience litigating non-competition, non-solicitation, and breach of confidentiality obligations, as well as theft of trade secret cases.

Enforcing Agreements

Our attorneys assist employers with enforcement of restrictive covenants, such as non-competition or non-solicitation covenants, and with non-disclosure agreements. We also help in pursuing employees who have stolen trade secrets.

Post-Hire Disputes

McMahon Berger represents employers who are brought into litigation alleging tortious interference with contract. This often occurs when the employer finds out too late that they have hired an employee who is bound by a restrictive covenant.

Wage & Hour Litigation

The law firm of McMahon Berger has been advising and representing employers in wage and hour litigation for over 60 years, both individual claims and those brought in a collective or class action.

A Complicated Regulatory Landscape

Employers must promptly retain counsel if they are facing a wage and hour enforcement investigation or lawsuit. That’s because of the ever-growing myriad of overlapping state and federal wage and hour obligations – many of which are extremely technical. This growing complexity has led to a steady rise in wage and hour litigation over the past decade. It now represents one of the largest potential liabilities for employers across all industries.

Enforcement Actions

McMahon Berger represents clients who are facing enforcement actions from the U.S. Department of Labor or from a state agency. These investigations often review a broad variety of pay practices and frequently result in a finding of back-wages for some employees. Repeated violations may also cause an enforcement action and the assessment of significant civil monetary penalties.

Lawsuits

Wage and hour litigation brought by employees often involves even more significant potential liability. Our attorneys are prepared to vigorously defend clients against the many complicating factors that often characterize these lawsuits.

  • Wage and hour lawsuits are rarely brought by a single employee. They are often collective and/or class actions seeking to include all employees affected by the organization’s wage and hour practices.
  • State and federal laws often allow employees to seek recovery or penalties for violations alleged over several years.
  • Employees can often recover double, and in some cases triple, the damages they claim to have suffered.
  • Last, but far from least, most wage and hour statutes make employers liable for attorneys’ fees if the employee successfully proves a violation.

Whistleblower & Retaliation Litigation

McMahon Berger has a substantial track record in handling cases involving whistleblowers and retaliation allegations.

A Growing Liability Risk

Our attorneys represent employers in cases filed by whistleblowers. We also defend clients against plaintiffs alleging retaliation for making complaints in the workplace or to a government agency. These types of cases demand a thorough understanding of both the client’s business and the law under which the plaintiff is proceeding.

Employment Law

Experienced representation and counseling in all areas of employment law.

Labor Law

Advocacy before arbitrators, mediators, labor boards, agencies, and state and federal courts.

Investigations

Uncovering the facts needed to resolve employment and labor issues.

Nonprofit Counseling

Legal assistance with labor and employment matters for nonprofit organizations.