Sarah N. O’Keefe has extensive experience defending employers in all aspects of litigation, and has completed multiple trials. She defends employers against claims of harassment, discrimination, retaliation, whistleblowing, misclassification, wrongful termination, breach of contract, defamation, and negligent hiring, training, supervision, and retention. She also counsels and trains employers in best practices, compliance, and personnel matters.
In her practice, Sarah:
- Represents employers and management in state and federal courts, for trials and appeals regarding various labor and employment issues, such as claims under the Arizona Civil Rights Act, Arizona Fair Wages and Healthy Families Act, Arizona Employment Protection Act, Family Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act
- Defends employers before administrative agencies, including state and federal agencies, such as the Arizona Civil Rights Division, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and National Labor Relations Board
- Conducts internal and external investigations to assess risk and minimize liability
- Provides advice and counsel on numerous areas of law, including policies and procedures, hiring, performance management and termination, pre-employment screening, background checks, drug and alcohol testing, probable cause testing, covenants not to compete, non-solicitation agreements, employment agreements, investigations, federal and state wage and hour issues, reductions in force, leaves and accommodations, paid sick time laws and regulations, ban-the-box, privacy, litigation avoidance, and risk management.
- Drafts handbooks, employment contracts, policies and procedures, and severance agreements
- Counsels management regarding human resources issues, including hiring, policies and procedures, training, disciplinary matters, leaves, and terminations
- Strategizes layoffs, restructuring, and acquisitions
- Drafts and enforces restrictive covenants, including noncompete, nonsolicit, and confidentiality agreements
- Advises employers on grievances and labor relations
- Conducts and facilitates training to managers and supervisors regarding human resources best practices, diversity and inclusion, investigation best practices, anti-discrimination, -harassment and -retaliation
Before joining Littler, Sarah clerked for the Hon. Patricia K. Norris at the Arizona Court of Appeals and worked in private practice.