Overview

Tom Metzger is a nationally recognized employment law advisor, litigator, and trainer. With a career spanning over 25 years, he has developed expertise representing employers and executives in connection with covenants-not-to-compete, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) regulatory and litigation matters, discrimination and retaliation claims, contract disputes, and related workplace matters.

Tom represents employers and executives throughout the United States in a wide variety of industries, ranging from Fortune 50 companies to start-up ventures. He also advises some of the nation’s leading CEOs, financial advisors, and entrepreneurs in connection with litigation, contract negotiations, and other employment matters. He is recognized by his peers as one of the country’s leading employment law advisors and litigators.

When matters cannot reach an early resolution, Tom has consistently and successfully tried cases to final verdict including over 25 trial victories before state and federal courts and administrative agencies throughout the country. Emphasizing an aggressive and efficient approach to litigation, he serves as lead counsel in complex and high-stakes matters, with particular emphasis on:

  • Covenant-not-to-compete and trade secret litigation, including temporary restraining orders, preliminary injunctions, electronic data forensic investigations, and related emergency litigation throughout the United States
  • OSHA and MSHA consultation and litigation, including extensive experience with injury and fatality investigations, safety auditing within a wide variety of highly complex and specialized industries, and consistent representation before OSHA, MSHA, and the Occupational Safety & Health Review Commission (OSHRC) throughout the nation
  • Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) consultation and litigation, including broad experience representing broker-dealers and financial advisor
  • Employment discrimination and retaliation claims
  • Contract disputes

In addition to his litigation practice, Tom has significant experience providing employers and executives with strategic advice, practical solutions, and compliance assistance in several specialized areas, including:

  • Safety audits and investigations, safety programs and policies, and regulatory guidance under OSHA and MSHA
  • Unfair competition, confidential information and trade secrets  
  • Retaliation and employment discrimination
  • The Americans with Disabilities Act
  • The Family and Medical Leave Act
  • Defamation
  • Privacy rights

Tom is a frequent speaker, author, and trainer on employment law and litigation topics. He has contributed to numerous articles and news programs and has been interviewed by television networks ABC, CBS, and NBC; radio programs; and Business Week, the Columbus Dispatch, Business First, Columbus CEO, and the Daily Reporter, among others.

Professional & Community Affiliations

Member

Ohio Bar Association

Member, Board of Governors

Labor and Employment Law Section

Ohio Bar Association

Former Editor-In-Chief

Labor and Employment Law Newsletter

Ohio Bar Association

Member

Labor and Employment Law Section

American Bar Association

Member

Labor and Employment Law Section

Columbus Bar Association

Recognition

Named, The Best Lawyers in America©

2013-2020

Named, Super Lawyer

Ohio

Super Lawyers

2009-2018

Named, Top Ohio Lawyer

Labor and Employment

Business First

2009-2013

Awarded, AV® Peer Review Rating

Martindale-Hubbell

Named, Top Attorney in Ohio

The Verdict

Named, 40 Under 40

Columbus Business First

2003

Graduate, Class of 1998

Leadership Columbus

Order of the Barristers

News, Analysis & Press

OSH Act Penalties Increase

ASAP

February 1, 2019

Court Ruling Delivers an Employer Win on OSHA Inspection

Human Resource Executive

October 30, 2018

Playing it Safe

Columbus CEO

January 6, 2014

Tom Metzger Notes Impact of Election on Business

The Plain Dealer

November 9, 2006

Speaking Engagements

What to Expect from OSHA in the Coming Year

Littler Executive Employer, Phoenix, AZ

May 3, 2018

2013 Ohio Regional Employer Conference

Cleveland, OH

October 24, 2013

Ethics Compliance – Effectively Dealing With Corporate Whistleblowers

Columbus, OH

May 14, 2012

OSHA Update: The 2012 Compliance and Enforcement Agenda

The 2012 Executive Employer® Conference

Littler Mendelson, Scottsdale, AZ

May 10, 2012

Conducting Lawful Investigations: The First 72 Hours

Employment Law Update - Human Resources Association of Central Ohio, Columbus, OH

April 25, 2012

OSHA Inspections: Strategies for Employers

Breakfast Briefing, Columbus, OH

November 18, 2011

Non-Competition Agreements, the Recruiting “Protocol,” and Key Updates for Broker/Dealers on Client Solicitation

Fall Symposium - National Association of Independent Broker/Dealers, New York, NY

November 14, 2011

Navigating the Changing Employment Law Landscape

2011 Ohio Employer Conference - Littler Mendelson, Mayfield Heights, OH

October 27, 2011

Key Employees: Poaching, Trade Secrets and Unfair Competition

Association of Corporate Counsel

August 4, 2011

Best Practices Checklist for Protecting Confidential Information & Preventing Unfair Competition

2010 Ohio Employer Conference - Littler Mendelson, Mayfield Heights, OH

October 10, 2010

Religious, Genetic, Caregiver, And National Origin Discrimination

Battelle, Columbus, OH

September 7, 2010

Disabilities in the Workplace, the ADA and the Amendments: Understanding the ADA, and a Review of an Employer’s Primary Obligations

Ohio Labor & Employment Law Institute, Cleveland, OH

July 21, 2010

Disabilities in the Workplace, the ADA and the Amendments: Understanding the ADA, and a Review of an Employer’s Primary Obligations

Ohio Labor & Employment Law Institute, Columbus, OH

June 23, 2010

Still Dealing with the Pain: Accommodating Leaves of Absence, the ADA and Other Legal Requirements

Employment Law Update - Human Resources Association of Central Ohio, Columbus, OH

April 27, 2010

The Future of Workplace Safety: Imminent Threats and Anticipated Regulation

2010 Executive Employer Conference® - Littler Mendelson, Phoenix, AZ

April 2010

Employing Change, Overcoming Crisis & Finding Opportunity: An Employer's Perspective

2009 Ohio Employer Conference - Littler Mendelson, Mayfield Heights, OH

October 29, 2009

Competitors and Employees: Protecting Unfair Competition, and Protecting Company Assets

Ohio Labor & Employment Law Institute, Cincinnati, OH

June 17, 2009

Competitors and Employees: Protecting Unfair Competition, and Protecting Company Assets

Ohio Labor & Employment Law Institute, Cleveland, OH

June 11, 2009

Competitors and Employees: Protecting Unfair Competition, and Protecting Company Assets

Ohio Labor & Employment Law Institute, Columbus, OH

May 13, 2009

The Americans with Disabilities Act - and the New ADAAA

Breakfast Briefing, Columbus, OH

November 10, 2008

Employer Mandated Wellness Programs

Association of Corporate Counsel

July 25, 2008

Confidentiality, Trade Secrets, and Intellectual Property: HR’s Strategic Role

Employment Law Update - Human Resources Association of Central Ohio, Columbus, OH

February 12, 2008

Secrets and Lies: Avoiding the Sting of Unfair Competition

2007 Ohio Employer Conference - Littler Mendelson

November 8, 2007

Recent Developments and Challenges with Covenants Not to Compete and Non-Solicitation Agreements in Ohio

Association of Corporate Counsel

October 5, 2007

2007 Employment Law Update: Recent Trends and Developments

Breakfast Briefing / Training Program

September 25, 2007

Recordkeeping in a Digital Age

Association of Corporate Counsel

July 20, 2007

Blogging in the Workplace – How Your Employees’ Off-duty and On-line Activities Can Lead to Employer Liability

Association of Corporate Counsel

September 14, 2006

OSHA Inspections

Breakfast Briefing

May 2005

(In)Feasibility of Compliance with OSHA Standards

Safety Congress

April 2005

What is “Work Time”?

Lorman Education Services, Columbus, OH

August 19, 2004

FMLA/CFRA/ADA

Breakfast Briefing

June 15, 2004

The Changing Workplace

2004 Executive Employer Conference® - Littler Mendelson, Phoenix, AZ

May 25, 2004

Family and Medical Leave Act

Breakfast Briefing, Columbus, OH

January 16, 2004

Labor and Employment Law Update: What’s Your Labor and Employment Law IQ?

ACCEL Muirfield

2004

Protected Leave of Absence

Office of the Ohio Attorney General

January 2004

Is This Restrictive Covenant Enforceable?

41st Annual Midwest Labor and Employment Law Seminar

2004

Education

  • J.D., University of Pittsburgh School of Law, 1992
  • B.A., Washington University in St. Louis, 1989magna cum laude

Bar Admission

Ohio

Courts

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 5th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 6th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 11th Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio
  • Ohio Supreme Court