Laura E. Hayward advises and represents a wide variety of employers, from ready-mix concrete suppliers to hospitals, restaurants and retailers, in employment law matters in state and federal courts and before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Fair Employment and Housing, and the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. She has defended employers against claims involving:
- Wrongful discharge
- Wage and hour laws under the California Labor Code
- The Fair Labor Standards Act
- The Fair Employment and Housing Act
- Title VII
- Discrimination based on race, disability, age sex, and other protected classes
Laura also defends clients in wage and hour class actions, most commonly cases alleging misclassification, missed rest and meal periods, unpaid overtime, off-the-clock work, rounding, and other wage and hour-related matters. She has also defended clients in class actions involving harassment and discrimination claims. Recently Laura second-chaired a four week class action meal period trial in Santa Clara County which resulted in a total defense verdict. She has also successfully decertified several nationwide and statewide class actions, and in several cases, has negotiated with plaintiffs to drop their class claims and resolve their cases on an individual basis.
Additionally, Laura provides counseling and advice to employers on a wide variety of topics, including:
- Wage and hour issues, including exemption analyses and audits
- Harassment investigations
- Disciplinary actions
- Leave issues
Prior to joining Littler Mendelson in 2005, Laura worked for five years at a top ranked international firm, where she specialized in employment and trademark litigation, and class action defense. While in law school, she participated in the Street Law Clinic, teaching a legal course to area high school students, and Law Students in Court, representing low-income clients in court on a variety of landlord-tenant disputes and other issues.
PROFESSIONAL AND COMMUNITY AFFILIATIONS
- Member, American Bar Association