Jonathan B. Orleans, chair of the Labor & Employment Law practice, has over 30 years of experience as a litigator and counselor in a broad range of matters, particularly relating to the employer-employee relationship. He represents businesses and individuals in disputes arising out of employment contracts, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, and other commercial agreements. Jon litigates cases arising under federal and state statutes governing employment, advises businesses on compliance with laws and regulations, and represents employers and senior executives in the negotiation of employment contracts and separation agreements. He regularly assists employers with the development and application of personnel policies.
Jon also advises colleges, universities and independent schools concerning not only employment-related matters, but also compliance with Title IX as it relates to campus sexual misconduct and to athletics. He has served as an investigator of campus and workplace sex discrimination and harassment complaints.
Jon regularly speaks to lawyers, businesspeople and educators on topics ranging from misclassification of employees under the FLSA, to employer regulation of employees' speech and appearance, to federal guidance concerning sexual assault on campus. He contributes to the firm's "Working Together" and "Education Law Notes" blogs.
Jon’s service to the bar and the community currently includes chairing the Local Civil Rules Advisory Committee of the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut, membership on the Connecticut Judicial Department Civil Commission and the Board of Directors of the Bridgeport Public Education Fund, and serving as Legal Advisor to the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut. He is co-chair of the Connecticut Bar Association Federal Practice Section. Previously, he was a member of the Federal Grievance Committee of the U.S. District Court and of the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Fair Housing Center. In 2011-12, Jon taught Civil Procedure as an adjunct professor at the University of Connecticut School of Law.
- Represented a large provider of retirement plans and services in class action litigation under ERISA
- Represents a bank defendant in a multidistrict consolidated class action antitrust suit challenging fees charged to merchants who accept payment (credit and debit) cards
- Successfully defended, in trial and on appeal, a marketing firm charged with unfair trade practices and misappropriation of trade secrets in connection with its hiring of a competitor’s employee
- Has defended numerous businesses, from manufacturers and law firms to physicians and other professionals, against claims of employment discrimination before the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and state and federal courts
- Represented a physician group that broke away from their employer and obtained a hospital contract against claims of, inter alia, unfair competition, brought by the former employer. Negotiated a favorable settlement
- Obtained an injunction under the federal Fair Housing Act in favor of a nonprofit organization denied permission by municipal authorities to establish a residence for homeless persons with HIV/AIDS
- Represented a high-technology manufacturer in the enforcement of a non-competition and non-solicitation agreement against a former employee
- Investigated a sexual assault complaint on behalf of a private university
- Represents a manufacturer in collective bargaining negotiations, other employment matters, and contract negotiations and disputes with vendors and customers
- Won, and successfully defended on appeal, an injunction under Title IX (the federal statute prohibiting gender discrimination in inter-collegiate athletics) preventing a university from eliminating its varsity women’s volleyball team; negotiated settlement on behalf of female student athletes that increased scholarships and improved facilities
- American Bar Association - Litigation Section; Labor and Employment Section
- Connecticut Bar Association - co-chair, Federal Practice Section; Litigation Section; Labor and Employment Section; Antitrust and Trade Regulation Section
- Connecticut Bar Foundation - Life Fellow
- Connecticut Judicial Department Civil Commission
- U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut - chair, Local Civil Rules Advisory Committee
- Council on Law in Higher Education
- American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut - board of directors, legal advisor
- Bridgeport Public Education Fund - board of directors
- Connecticut Fair Housing Center - former member, board of directors
Honors & Awards
- Recipient of the Connecticut Law Tribune's Professional Excellence Award, for his outstanding service to the legal profession during his career.
- Named Stamford Lawyer of the Year in the "Employment Law - Management" category in 2012 and 2015 by The Best Lawyers in America
- Named Stamford Lawyer of the Year in the "Litigation - Labor and Employment" category in 2014 by The Best Lawyers in America
- Listed in The Best Lawyers in America in the areas of litigation - labor and employment and employment law - management since 2010
- Selected to the Super Lawyers list since 2006 in the areas of employment & labor and business litigation
- Listed in Chambers USA America's Leading Lawyers to Businesses in the area of labor and employment
- Received the highest peer review rating by Martindale-Hubbell (AV Preeminent)