Nelva Smith

Steptoe & Johnson PLLC

$ $$$

South High Street 41
Columbus 43215 OH US

Nelva J. Smith is a labor and employment attorney whose wide-ranging experience makes her an extremely effective advisor for her clients. From general day-to-day counseling, to litigation, workers’ compensation, and safety and health issues, Ohio employers of all sizes rely on Nelva to guide them through the myriad challenges of labor and employment law.

Known as a fervent advocate for her clients, Nelva is diligent and aggressive in defending her clients’ interests. As a member of the firm’s Workplace Safety Team, she has defended employers in front of the Industrial Commission on a variety of issues that arise out of Ohio workers’ compensation matters, and she also has extensive experience in safety and health issues, with an emphasis on OSHA.

She has presented on several occasions nationally on OSHA topics, and she has twice been a contributing editor to the national treatise on Occupational Safety and Health Law.

Nelva has experience defending employers in general employment litigation, charges before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, charges before the Ohio Civil Rights Commission, charges before the National Labor Relations Board, and defending OSHA citations, and she has also successfully handled wage and hour audits before a state government agency.

In addition, to her employment experience, Nelva is also on the firm’s Higher Education Team and actively represents several universities and colleges in the region against Title IX litigation.


  • Participated as co-counsel in defending an employer against an OSHA citation before an Administrative Law Judge at an OSHRC hearing in Wisconsin
  • Investigated and prepared Position Statements for Ohio Department of Job and Family Services wage investigations
  • Assisted in defense of an appeal to the Supreme Court of Ohio for a voluntary abandonment issue in the workers’ compensation field and was successful in providing a good result for the employer
  • Attended workers’ compensation hearings at the Industrial Commission throughout the state of Ohio


  • J.D. Capital University
  • B.A. Capital University


  • Ohio State Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Women Lawyers of Franklin County


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South High Street 41
Columbus 43215 OH US
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Lina Stillman

Broadway 42
New York 10006 NY US