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, nonprofit organizations, and individuals in disputes arising out of employment contracts, restrictive covenants, and other agreements, and litigates cases arising under federal and state statutes governing employment. Jon advises clients on compliance with laws and regulations, and represents employers and senior executives in the negotiation of employment contracts and separation agreements. He frequently assists employers with the development and application of personnel policies, and offers anti-harassment and other training programs to clients of the firm.
Jon also advises colleges, universities and independent schools concerning both employment-related matters and compliance with Title IX as it relates to campus sexual misconduct and to athletics. He serves 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, serving as vice-chair of 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 also co-chair of the Connecticut Bar Association Federal Practice Section. Previously, Jon has been a member of the Connecticut Judicial Department Civil Commission, the Federal Grievance Committee of the U.S. District Court, and 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.
- Defense of a putative class action under New York labor law pertaining to wages and hours
- Investigation of sexual misconduct complaints on behalf of private universities
- Successfully defended, in trial and on appeal, a marketing firm charged with unfair trade practices and misappropriation of trade secrets in its hiring of a competitor’s employee
- Advised a university concerning Title IX compliance in its athletics program
- Defense of employers in federal and state Department of Labor wage/hour investigations
- Has defended numerous businesses, from manufacturers 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 against claims of, inter alia, unfair competition, brought by their former employer
- Obtained an injunction under the 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
- Represents a bank defendant in a multidistrict consolidated class action antitrust suit challenging fees charged to merchants who accept payment (credit and debit) cards
- Represents manufacturers in collective bargaining negotiations, other employment matters, and contract negotiations and disputes with vendors and customers
- Represents businesses and individuals in breach-of-contract litigation
- Defense of a provider of retirement plans and services in an ERISA class action
- 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, 2015 and 2017 by The Best Lawyers in America
- Named Stamford Lawyer of the Year in the "Litigation - Labor and Employment" category in 2014 and 2018 by The Best Lawyers in America
- 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)