Kara Goodwin is a member of Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s Labor and Employment Department and Wage and Hour Litigation Practice Group where she focuses a significant portion of her practice on representing employers across the United States in the defense of complex wage and hour claims arising under federal and state laws.
Ms. Goodwin also provides preventative counseling and works with employers to minimize their exposure to investigation and litigation under the Fair Labor Standards Act and state wage and hour laws. Ms. Goodwin has significant experience conducting large-scale audits of employer workforces to assess and, where necessary, change wage and hour policies and practices to bring employers more clearly into compliance with federal and state wage and hour laws.
Ms. Goodwin’s wage-hour experience also includes trying two federal bench trials, including a complete defense verdict based on the outside sales exemption against a collective action claim that plaintiffs were misclassified as exempt and were entitled to overtime pay.
Ms. Goodwin is also a member of Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s Employment Litigation and Workplace Counseling & Solutions Practice Group and has successfully defended employers before state and federal courts, the EEOC, and state administrative agencies in matters involving all aspects of employment issues, including discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims arising under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 1981, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and related state laws; contract disputes; and various state tort laws.
Ms. Goodwin is the primary point of contact and provides day-to-day advice and counsel to human resource and operations personnel for a major national retail client on compliance with federal and state employment laws regarding hiring, background checks, drug testing, workplace investigations, performance management, employee discipline, leaves of absences, accommodations, terminations and severance, reductions in force, employment agreements, and wage and hour issues.
Ms. Goodwin has achieved success for clients prior to litigation, with early motion practice, at settlement conference and/or mediation, at summary judgment, and at trial. Ms. Goodwin takes a practical and preventative approach to client advice with an eye toward litigation altogether. Prior to joining Seyfarth Shaw, Ms. Goodwin served as a judicial extern for the Honorable Samuel Der-Yeghiayan of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
- J.D., Chicago-Kent College of Law, with highest honors (2009)
- Labor and Employment Certificate Recipient
- Excellence Awards for Highest Performance in Legal Writing II, Legal Writing III, Appellate Advocacy, and Trial Advocacy
- Moot Court Honor Society
- Chicago-Kent Law Review
- B.A., Northern Illinois University, summa cum laude (2006)
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