Susan has an unusual legal background: she works as an employment law practitioner, corporate attorney, and commercial litigator, an exceptionally broad range of skills. In essence, she serves as an outside General Counsel to her clients, which range from start-ups and non-profits to long-established national government contractors.
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This introductory level program will provide an overview of the basics needed to draft an effective employee handbook. An effective employee handbook goes beyond the mere description of benefits, vacation and sick leave, and where to find the coffee. An employee handbook is the employer’s first line of defense in mitigating or even avoiding wage and hour claims, employment discrimination, etc. This program will provide insight into the importance of having an employee handbook to mitigate or avoid liability for employment claims. Sample policies will be provided and reviewed.
Key topics to be discussed:
Date: February 16, 2023
Susan Richards Salen | Rees Broome, P.C.
Susan has an unusual legal background: she works as an employment law practitioner, corporate attorney, and commercial litigator, an exceptionally broad range of skills. In essence, she serves as an outside General Counsel to her clients, which range from start-ups and non-profits to long-established national government contractors. She describes her key focus with clients as working to evaluate and minimize the inevitable risks they face as entrepreneurs and business owners.
As an employment law practitioner, she assists in the preparation of employment manuals and policies, business ethics policies, proprietary rights and noncompete agreements, documenting performance issues, drafting and implementing performance improvement plans, and when necessary, assisting with employment terminations. When needed she defends clients against unemployment claims, wage claims, and discrimination claims before regulatory agencies (EEOC, local human rights commissions) and in state and federal courts. Susan values opportunities to work with clients on a proactive basis with the hopes that the understanding of and compliance with laws will result in the avoidance of or better positions when defending lawsuits and charges. She, therefore, counsels clients on compliance with applicable federal wage laws (FLSA, Davis Beacon, Service Contract Act) and state wage and hour laws, federal leave laws (FMLA) and state leave laws (Maryland and District of Columbia Paid Leave Laws). She offers training to her clients in these areas. In addition to working with companies, Susan represents C-level managers in the negotiation of executive employment agreements and compensation and separation packages.
As a corporate attorney, Susan functions in the role of outside counsel and contracts attorney. She prepares and reviews teaming agreements, prime and subcontracts, software development and licensing agreements, software as services agreements, sales representative agreements, independent contractor and consulting agreements, and non-disclosure agreements. She works with clients from start-up to finish performing business formation services and drafting buy-sell agreements, shareholder agreements, operating agreements, purchase and sale agreements and drafting of succession planning agreements.
As a commercial litigator, Susan has tried cases covering all of her areas of expertise from cases involving employment law to disputes involving closely held business matters (shareholder dissolution suits, dissociation actions, and derivative actions) to breaches of commercial contracts and restrictive covenant agreements.
Ms. Salen is a frequent lecturer for National Business Institutes in the areas of employment law, trial advocacy, business contracts, and ethics. She was a member of the faculty of Virginia State Bar Professionalism Course. She has also been a lecturer on employment law for the Virginia Bar Continuing Legal Education program, and for the Community Associations Institute.
I. The need for and benefit of having a handbook | 2:00pm – 2:20pm
II. Essential policies to include in every handbook and why these polices must be included | 2:20pm – 2:40pm
III. Policies/statements that should never be included in a handbook | 2:40pm – 3:00pm
Break | 3:00pm – 3:10pm
IV. Understanding the impact that federal, state, and local laws have on the handbook and the need to address certain laws in the handbook | 3:10pm – 3:30pm
V. Multi-state employer challenges | 3:30pm – 3:50pm
VI. Remote employee considerations | 3:50pm – 4:10pm