Emily Cardenas advises local and multistate employers on various employment law matters, including:

  • The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and similar state paid and unpaid leave laws (i.e., Washington Paid Family Medical Leave Act, the California Family Rights Act, etc.)
  • Parental leave
  • Disability and accommodation
  • Discrimination, harassment and retaliation

Emily drafts employee handbooks and related personnel policies and procedures for local and multistate employers. In addition, she conducts training sessions for clients on various areas of employment and labor law, including on anti-discrimination and anti-harassment.

Emily has extensive experience in conducting internal employee investigations into a wide range of employment concerns. She also has experience representing employers before state and federal courts and administrative agencies on claims related to discrimination, harassment, retaliation, breach of contract and noncompetition agreements, and claims of trade secret misappropriation.

Before joining Littler, Emily represented various clients in litigation in a wide range of matters on both the plaintiff and defense side, and practiced employment law exclusively in a national full-service law firm.

Emily is a proud military wife (U.S. Air Force).

Professional & Community Affiliations


Hispanic National Bar Association


Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)

Legislative Director, Board Member

Seattle Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)


Mother Attorneys Mentoring Association of Seattle

Member and Past President

Latina/o Bar Association of Washington


Named, Ones to Watch

The Best Lawyers in America©


Recipient, Spirit of Service Award

Latina/o Law Student Association of Seattle University School of Law


Speaking Engagements

A Legal Update: 2017 & 2018 Year to Date

Seattle SHRM

April 2018

Lawful Hiring and Background Checks

Seattle, WA

October 2017


  • J.D., Seattle University School of Law, 2010cum laude
  • B.A., University of Washington, 2007

Bar Admission



  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington
  • US District Court: Western District of Washington