Christopher W. Olmsted

Shareholder San Diego

Christopher Olmsted is a shareholder in the firm's San Diego office.

Mr. Olmsted helps businesses avoid employment-related legal claims by providing California employment law compliance advice. He also defends employers in a variety of litigation matters. Mr. Olmsted's employment law compliance and litigation experience includes: California FEHA and Title VII discrimination, harassment and retaliation claims; wrongful termination claims; wage and hour compliance and defense of claims and labor agency audits; California CFRA, federal FMLA and other leaves of absences; misappropriation of trade secrets, non-competition and non-disclosure agreements; California and federal ADA accommodation; gender pay equity audits and litigation; terminations, reductions in force and severance agreements; independent contractor misclassification claims; employment agreements and policies; labor Commissioner claims (Department of Industrial Relations, Division of Labor Standards Enforcement claims), EDD and Unemployment Insurance claims.

Mr. Olmsted also provides employment law compliance and claim prevention training to management and staff, as well as other attorneys.

Mr. Olmsted has represented clients in state and federal trials, arbitration proceedings, and administrative law hearings. Mr. Olmsted also has significant experience representing clients on appeals before California and federal courts of appeal.

Mr. Olmsted serves as an instructor at Cal State University San Marcos, teaching a course titled "Legal Issues for HR Professionals" as part of the Human Resource Management Certificate Program. He is frequently an invited speaker for various industry groups, and regularly publishes employment law articles.

Professional Activities and Speeches

Professional Activities:

  • California Bar Employment Law Section
  • San Diego County bar Association Insurance Section
  • Westwind Brass, Board of Directors member
  • Jenna Druck Foundation, Board of Directors member
  • North County Personnel Association, Board Member


  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''Reducing the Risk of Wage and Hour Claims Through Effective Policies and Procedures'' - Phoenix - May 09, 2018
  • Ogletree Deakins Navigating California Employment Law Seminar - ''Common California Leave of Absence Dilemmas . . . and How to Solve Them'' - Napa - March 01, 2018
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''Peace of Mind For California Piece Rate Pay'' - San Diego - May 05, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''Pardon the Interruption! Workplace Strategies Style'' - San Diego - May 05, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Navigating California Employment Law Seminar - ''"Reasonable" in California . . . But Perhaps Nowhere Else'' - Napa - March 02, 2017
  • Beverly Hills Bar Association - ''California's New Fair Pay Act: Practical Steps for Bringing, Defending and Avoiding These Claims'' - Beverly Hills - September 22, 2016
  • PIHRA California HR Conference - ''Women, Men and Unequal Paychecks: California’s Fair Pay Act'' - Long Beach - August 29, 2016
  • Ogletree Deakins California Employment Law & Cabernet Seminar - ''Men, Women and Unequal Paychecks – California’s New “Fair Pay Act” and What It Means for Your Business'' - Napa - February 2016
  • San Diego Employers Association - ''Annual California Employment Law Update'' - San Diego - January 2016
  • Medical Group Management Association - ''Employment Law Update'' - San Diego - January 2016
  • North County Human Resources San Diego Webinar - ''Medical Marijuana in the Workplace: Smokin’ Out Fact from Fiction'' - October 2015
  • Ogletree Deakins Seminar - ''Background Checks and the New Wave of Class Action Lawsuit'' - La Jolla - October 2015
  • Ogletree Deakins Briefing - ''Sick and Tired In California: California’s Sick Pay Law'' - La Jolla - April 2015
  • Ogletree Deakins Seminar - ''Legal Issues of a Fragmented Workplace'' - La Jolla - October 2014
  • San Diego County Medical Society - ''Physician, Heal Thyself: Hiring, Discipline & Terminations'' - San Diego - May 2014
  • Mission Edge - ''Employment Law Practices for Non-Profits'' - San Diego - November 2013
  • American Payroll Association - ''Wage & Hour Law'' - San Diego - June 2013
  • San Diego Employers Association - ''Worker’s Compensation Leaves: Staying Sane & Legal'' - June 2013
  • PIHRA Regional Conference - ''Top 10 Plaintiff Lawyer Employment Law Tricks, and How to Avoid Falling for Them'' - Anaheim - January 2013

Published Works


Our Insights

Governor Brown Signs Final Round of Employment-Related Legislation

October 04, 2018

California Amends Pay Equity Law, Providing Clarity for Employers

August 22, 2018

6 FAQs on California’s Meal and Rest Break Rules

July 17, 2018

California Legislature Pounces on Employers With 12 New Bills

April 11, 2018

As Marijuana Shops Thrive, California Employers Revisit Drug Policies

January 18, 2018

California Statewide and Local Minimum Wage Rates to Increase in 2018

January 02, 2018

California Legislative Round-Up: Which Bills Survived the Governor’s Desk

October 24, 2017

New California Law Restricts Employers From Giving Access to Immigration Agents

October 24, 2017

California Governor Signs Law Banning Salary History Inquiries

October 15, 2017

New California Law Mandates Small Businesses Provide Parental Leave

October 14, 2017

Marital Status Discrimination Claim Fails in Light of Workplace Violence Concerns, California Court Rules

September 29, 2017

California Employment Law Bills Sent to Governor’s Desk

September 18, 2017

San Diego Enacts Pay Equity Ordinance for City Contractors

September 13, 2017

California Employers Face New Notice Requirement for Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking Time Off

August 08, 2017

California Legislative Update: Several Labor and Employment Bills Passed in the Assembly

June 14, 2017

California Paid Sick Leave Update: Employer Attendance Policies May Interfere With Labor Code Rights

May 03, 2017

The Heavy Burden of Light Duty in California: Court Assesses Multi-Million Dollar Disability Award

April 17, 2017

California Legislative Update: 2017–18 Session Sees Several Employment-Related Bills

February 27, 2017

California Statewide and Local Minimum Wage Rates to Increase in 2017

November 29, 2016

California’s Fall Legislation Report: A Rundown of the Most Significant New Employment Laws

October 11, 2016

Ninth Circuit Approves Neutral Time Clock Rounding Practice

September 19, 2016

Recreational Marijuana Placed on California November Ballot

August 03, 2016

San Diego City Council Amends Local Sick Pay Law

July 27, 2016

San Diego Voters Approve Minimum Wage and Sick Pay Measure

June 14, 2016

California Legislative Update: What State Law Changes Should Employers Anticipate?

May 13, 2016

Combining 10-Minute Rest Breaks May—or May Not—Be Lawful in California

May 09, 2016

Governor Brown Signs California’s $15 Minimum Wage Bill

April 04, 2016

California $15 Minimum Wage Bill Awaits Governor’s Signature

April 01, 2016

California Lawmakers and Unions Agree to $15 Minimum Wage

March 28, 2016

San Diego Minimum Wage and Sick Pay Ordinance Placed On June Ballot

February 17, 2016

A New Year’s Resolution for California Employers: Fair Pay Act Compliance

January 04, 2016

For California Employers, New Year Brings New Restrictions—Along With a Few Silver Linings

December 14, 2015

Ogletree Governmental Affairs State Round-Up

December 01, 2015

Filing of Police Report Accusing Coworker of Stealing Deemed Protected Activity by California Court

November 12, 2015

California Court Deems Truck Drivers Employees, Not Independent Contractors

October 29, 2015

California Governor Signs Gender Wage Equality Law

October 07, 2015

California Minimum Wage Bill Stalls in Legislature

August 31, 2015

Inability to Work Under A Particular Supervisor Is Not a Disability in California

August 21, 2015

California Amends FEHA, Protecting Accommodation Requests

August 18, 2015

California Governor Signs Paid Sick Leave Amendment—Effective Immediately

July 14, 2015

Tips for Lawfully Hiring Teenagers for Summer Jobs in California

June 09, 2015

Pending California Bill May Cure Sick Pay Law

June 04, 2015

Ten Tips To Comply With California’s Upcoming Sick Pay Mandate

May 20, 2015

California Confectioner Defeats Worker’s Age Discrimination Claim

May 04, 2015

California Employer Found to Have Appropriately Navigated Through Interactive Process

March 31, 2015

California Labor Commissioner Revises Sick Pay Notice Obligation

February 24, 2015

New Year’s Resolutions for the California HR Manager

January 16, 2015

California Supreme Court Denies Review of Cell Phone Reimbursement Case

December 01, 2014

California Labor Agency Publishes Sick Pay Poster and Wage Notice

December 01, 2014

FAQs on California’s Paid Sick Leave Law

November 10, 2014

California Legislation 2014

October 30, 2014

Tips for Taking Advantage of California’s Extended Unemployment Appeal Deadline

October 24, 2014

San Diego Minimum Wage Ordinance Put On Ice

October 18, 2014

Bullying in the Workplace: California’s New Training Requirement

October 12, 2014

California Legislative Update: September 2014

September 30, 2014

California Court Determines Arbitrator Must Decide Whether Class Claims Are Subject to Arbitration Agreement

September 02, 2014

Employer Required to Reimburse Employees for Personal Cell Phone Use Despite Unlimited Minutes Plans

August 20, 2014

Back to School! Employers: Are You Ready for School-Related Leave for Parents?

August 18, 2014

Court Endorses PTO Use for Exempt Employee Partial-Day Absences

July 30, 2014

California Legislative Update: July 2014

July 30, 2014

San Diego City Council Approves Minimum Wage Increase and Sick Pay Ordinance

July 30, 2014

City of San Diego Imposes Minimum Wage Hike and Sick Pay Ordinance

July 15, 2014


Media Quotes

November 30, 2018 - SHRM Online - "Complying with California’s Suitable Seating Requirements"
October 09, 2018 - SHRM Online - "California Employers: Be Prepared for These New Workplace Laws"
September 10, 2018 - SHRM Online - "These California Workplace Bills Are on the Governor’s Desk"