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Kirsten G. Daniels

Attorney

In her employment counseling and litigation practice, Kirsten partners with businesses to help them navigate the often turbulent waters of employment law compliance. Kirsten advises employers on all manner of federal, state, and local employment laws across jurisdictions, including paid sick leave, other forms of protected leave (such as FMLA and ADA leave), minimum wage and wage/hour compliance, worker classification, performance management and termination, WARN Act compliance, and myriad discrimination and harassment laws.  Her advice and counsel practice also includes drafting employment handbooks, personnel policies, employment and confidentiality agreements, and separation and release agreements. Kirsten also advises federal contractors on OFCCP compliance and assists employers during OFCCP audits and in preparing and implementing Affirmative Action Programs.

As an employment litigator, Kirsten defends clients against wrongful and constructive discharge claims, discrimination, harassment and hostile work environment allegations, and wage and hour violations, both in court and in front of the Washington Human Rights Commission and EEOC.

Kirsten has written articles and advice materials in a variety of employment law and human resources publications, and she speaks locally and nationally on topics including FLSA, ADA and FMLA issues and compliance. 

In her spare time, you can find Kirsten on the tennis court or singing in her rock band, False Sense of Security.

Introduction

In her employment counseling and litigation practice, Kirsten partners with businesses to help them navigate the often turbulent waters of employment law compliance. Kirsten advises employers on all manner of federal, state, and local employment laws across jurisdictions, including paid sick leave, other forms of protected leave (such as FMLA and ADA leave), minimum wage and wage/hour compliance, worker classification, performance management and termination, WARN Act compliance, and myriad discrimination and harassment laws.  Her advice and counsel practice also includes drafting employment handbooks, personnel policies, employment and confidentiality agreements, and separation and release agreements. Kirsten also advises federal contractors on OFCCP compliance and assists employers during OFCCP audits and in preparing and implementing Affirmative Action Programs.

As an employment litigator, Kirsten defends clients against wrongful and constructive discharge claims, discrimination, harassment and hostile work environment allegations, and wage and hour violations, both in court and in front of the Washington Human Rights Commission and EEOC.

Kirsten has written articles and advice materials in a variety of employment law and human resources publications, and she speaks locally and nationally on topics including FLSA, ADA and FMLA issues and compliance. 

In her spare time, you can find Kirsten on the tennis court or singing in her rock band, False Sense of Security.

Experience & Results

  • Defended national retailer against disability and religious discrimination claims brought by pro se plaintiff under both federal and Oregon state law
  • Plaintiff's failure to accommodate and workers' compensation discrimination and retaliation claims dismissed on summary judgment; case dismissed prior to trial (Ninth Circuit appeal by plaintiff pending)
  • Litigated disability failure to accommodate and race discrimination claim on behalf of national oil company
  • Defended local health and fitness organization against discrimination and wrongful discharge claim brought in front of EEOC; claim dismissed by EEOC within 48 hours
  • Mediated failure to accommodate and FLMA claim on behalf of local software company

Education

  • University of Puget Sound (B.A., 1995)
  • Seattle University School of Law (J.D., magna cum laude, 2005)

Admissions

  • Washington
  • US District Court, Western District of Washington
  • US District Court, Eastern District of Washington

Awards/Honors and Organizational Memberships

  • Named on the Washington Rising Stars list by Super Lawyers® Magazine
  • Recognized as one of the “Top Women Attorneys in Washington” by Seattle Met Magazine
  • Society for Human Resources Management, Member
  • King County Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section, Member
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Lake Washington Human Resources Association, Member 

Publications/Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, “Sexual Harassment in the Workplace,” Woods Creek Consulting's Technology Executive Peer Group (November 14, 2018)
  • Speaker, “It’s a ‘Me Too’ Climate: Navigating the Sexual Harassment Storm,” CEO Masters Forum (August 16, 2018)
  • Speaker, “Developing Your Strengths & Most Productive Work Style,” Women in Law & Leadership Summit (June 13, 2018)
  • Speaker, “Workplace Behavior Policies,” Center for Advanced Manufacturing Puget Sound (CAMPS) (March 22, 2018)
  • Speaker, “It’s a ‘Me Too’ Climate: Navigating the Sexual Harassment Storm,” CEO Masters Forum (December 21, 2017)
  • Speaker, “Employer-Employee Relations Best Practices,” CleanSpace Northwest Inc./Remodeler’s Council (October 4, 2017)
  • Speaker, “Sex, Drugs, and Rock & Roll,” at King County Bar Association Business Law Section, “Employment Law Updates and New Developments” (January 25, 2017)
  • Author, “It’s an “Economic Reality”: Your Independent Contractors May Actually Be Employees,”eat-drink-shop-stay.com (August 14, 2015)
  • Speaker, “Reducing the Potential for Discrimination and Harassment Liability,” at NBI Seminar, “Advanced Employment Law: Working Through Common Problems” (December 17, 2014)
  • Author, “You Are Not Your Employees’ “Friend”: New Washington Law Restricts Employer Access to Employees’ Social Media Activity,” eat-drink-shop-stay.com (August 22, 2013)
  • Speaker, “Risk and Litigation Management” Washington Health Care Association Webinar (August 22, 2013)
  • Speaker, “Performance Management” Washington Health Care Association Webinar (August 15, 2013)
  • Speaker, “Handbook Policies and Workplace Procedures” Washington Health Care Association Webinar (August 8, 2013)
  • Speaker, “Recruiting, Interviewing and Hiring for Retention” Washington Health Care Association Webinar (August 1, 2013)
  • Author, “Washington Wage/Hour Compliance: Misclassification of Independent Contractors,” eat-drink-shop-stay.com (February 19, 2013)
  • Co-author, “Look Out For Drive-By ADA Lawsuits: Are You Ready?,” eat-drink-shop-stay.com (January 11, 2013)
  • Author, “Compliance is on the menu: Preparing for Seattle’s paid sick and safe leave ordinance,” Washington Restaurant Magazine (August 2012)
  • Co-author, “Preparing for Seattle’s Paid Sick and Safe Leave Ordinance,” Washington Restaurant Association (August 2, 2012)
  • Author, “How Much is a Policy Prohibiting Discrimination and Harassment Worth? A Recent Verdict Suggests at Least $350,000,” eat-drink-shop-stay.com (July 30, 2013)
  • Author, “The Nitty Gritty on Seattle’s New Sick & Safe Leave Ordinance,” eat-drink-shop-stay.com (July 9, 2012)
  • Speaker, “Best Practices for Accommodating Disabled Employees: Legal Update and Trends,” Lane Powell’s 29th Annual Labor and Employment Law Seminar, Portland, OR (April 11, 2012)
  • Speaker, “Wage Laws for Specific Types of Workers” and “Exempt vs. Non-Exempt Employees,” National Business Institute’s “FLSA Issues in Small- to and Medium-Sized Businesses” Seminar (March 14, 2012)
  • Speaker, “Annual Labor and Employment Law Update: Lessons for Best Employers From Judicial Decisions, New Laws and Regulations,” Lane Powell’s 29th Annual Labor and Employment Law Seminar, Seattle, WA (September 20, 2011)
  • Speaker, “Tips for Conducting Workplace Investigations: Lessons Learned from the Trenches,” South King County Human Resources Association’s Meeting (March 17, 2011)
  • Speaker, “Employment Law Update,” Lane Powell’s 28th Annual Labor and Employment Law Seminar (October 2010)
  • Speaker, “Navigating the Changes to the ADA and FMLA: More than Meets the Eye,” 22nd Annual Northwest Regional Payroll Conference, American Payroll Association (September 2010)
  • Keynote Speaker, “To Be or Not to Be: Employee Classification Conundrums,” 22nd Annual Northwest Regional Payroll Conference, American Payroll Association (September 2010)
  • Speaker, “Changes in Employment Law Every Employer Should Know,” Providence Physician Network Manager’s Forum (November 2009)
  • Co-author, “Employees’ Use of E-mail for Union Support Purposes,” Human Resources 2008 (Summer 2008)
  • Co-author, “Human Resources 2008: Answers to the Top 25 HR Questions in 2008 – NLRB Ruling Restricts Use of Company E-mail for Union Purposes” (2008)
  • Speaker, “Best Workplaces” Forum, “Let’s Nip It in the Bud: How Training, Policies and Human Resources ‘Best Practices’ Can Keep Smaller Problems from Getting Bigger,” Washington State Bar Association (September 2008)
  • Co-author, “Looking Forward on Background Checks: The CMS Employee Background Check Pilot Program Should Prompt Long Term Care Providers to Evaluate Their Current ‘Direct Access Employer’ Background Check Screening Process,” American Health Lawyers Association's LTC Advisor (November 2007)
  • Moderator, “Performance Evaluations of Employees in Washington,” Lorman Education Seminar (November 2007)

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