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.

California Employment Law Compliance

California employment law, ever changing and always multifaceted, confounds employers and can deliver bruising liability. Mr. Olmsted helps businesses thrive in this challenging environment.

Twenty five years of litigation experience, combined with a long history of advising employers on a broad array of compliance matters, enables Mr. Olmsted to offer his clients practical, succinct, and creative advice.

Mr. Olmsted frequently assists clients with issues relating to:

  • California wage and hour compliance advice
  • Difficult terminations and severance negotiations
  • Leaves of absence guidance
  • Disability accommodation obligations
  • Workplace investigations of harassment, discrimination, and other misconduct
  • Handbook creation and updates
  • Employment agreements
  • Commission agreements and other incentive pay plans
  • Non-disclosure agreements
  • Preparing EEOC and California DFEH position statements
  • Responding to pre-litigation demand letters
  • Pay equity audits
  • Exempt classification audits
  • Merger & acquisition labor practices due diligence
  • Sexual harassment prevention training and advice
  • “Boot camp” employment law compliance and claim prevention training to management and staff, as well as other attorneys
  • Other state and federal law compliance matters

Mr. Olmsted leads a group of compliance attorneys in the San Diego office. He also serves as a member of Ogletree Deakins’ California Advice Group, a network of California attorneys who lend expertise to the clients of Ogletree Deakins’ attorneys in our offices across the nation.

Mr. Olmsted has served 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.

California Litigation

Mr. Olmsted has 25 years of experience litigating employment law claims. During that time he has helped clients respond to just about every type of employment-related lawsuit that can be filed in California (and seriously, in California it’s a long list!). He works with a team of talented defense attorneys in the firm’s San Diego office, as well as the firm’s other offices throughout the state.

Mr. Olmsted’s litigation experience includes: California FEHA and Title VII discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims; wrongful termination claims; wage and hour litigation (claims for overtime, unpaid wages, meal and rest breaks, and the like); claims involving California CFRA, federal FMLA, and other leaves of absences; misappropriation of trade secrets, non-competition, and non-disclosure agreements; California and federal ADA accommodation; independent contractor misclassification claims; Labor Commissioner claims (Department of Industrial Relations, Division of Labor Standards Enforcement claims), U.S. Department of Labor claims, EEOC and California Department of Fair Employment and Housing claims; EDD and Unemployment Insurance claims.

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

Learn more about Christopher W. Olmsted

Education

  • J.D., Loyola Law School, 1994
  • B.A., University of California, Berkeley, 1991

Admittance to Practice

  • California
  • U.S. District Court, Central and Southern Districts of California
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

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

Speeches

  • Ogletree Deakins Navigating California Employment Law Seminar - "What's New in California Employment Law" - Napa - February 28, 2019
  • Ogletree Deakins Navigating California Employment Law Seminar - "It's Crazy Out Here! What Employers Need to Know to Survive in the California Employment Law Jungle" - Napa - February 27, 2019
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - "Reducing the Risk of Wage and Hour Claims Through Effective Policies and Procedures" - Phoenix - May 9, 2018
  • Ogletree Deakins Navigating California Employment Law Seminar - "Common California Leave of Absence Dilemmas . . . and How to Solve Them" - Napa - March 1, 2018
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - "Pardon the Interruption! Workplace Strategies Style" - San Diego - May 5, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - "Peace of Mind For California Piece Rate Pay" - San Diego - May 5, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Navigating California Employment Law Seminar - ""Reasonable" in California . . . But Perhaps Nowhere Else" - Napa - March 2, 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
  • Medical Group Management Association - "Employment Law Update" - San Diego - January 2016
  • San Diego Employers Association - "Annual California 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
  • September 20, 2017 - SHRM Online - "San Diego Enacts Pay Equity Ordinance for City Contractors"
  • March 2017 - California Labor and Employment Law Review - "California’s Fair Pay Act"
  • December 7, 2016 - CPA Practice Advisor - "16 New Labor Laws California Employers Must Know"
  • October 17, 2016 - Orange County Business Journal - "Ninth Circuit Approves Neutral Time Clock Rounding Practice"
  • June 10, 2015 - SHRM.org - "Calif.: Pending Bill May Cure Sick Pay Law"
  • June 10, 2015 - SHRM.org - "Calif.: Tips for Lawfully Hiring Teenagers for Summer Jobs"
  • October 17, 2014 - SHRM.org - "California San Diego Minimum Wage Ordinance Put on Ice"
  • October 15, 2014 - Business Management Daily - "Court OKs PTO for Exempt Employees"
  • July 22, 2014 - SHRM.org - "Calif.: San Diego Approves Minimum Wage Hike and Paid Sick Leave Mandate"
  • October 9, 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"
  • July 25, 2018 - SHRM Online - "5 Workplace Privacy Rules California Employers Must Follow"
  • July 23, 2018 - SHRM Online - "What Employee Speech Is Protected in the Workplace?"
  • June 22, 2018 - SHRM Online - "Hold Managers Accountable for California Meal-Break Compliance"
  • June 13, 2018 - SHRM Online - "4 Tips to Prepare for a Labor Commissioner Hearing"
  • May 21, 2018 - SHRM Online - "California Bill Would Expand Harassment-Prevention Training"
  • April 23, 2018 - SHRM Online - "California Immigration Law Places Employers in Tough Position"
  • February 16, 2018 - SHRM Online - "Navigate Workers’ Medical and Recreational Use of Marijuana"
  • September 20, 2017 - SHRM Online - "California Parental Leave Bill Sent to Governor's Desk"
  • August 1, 2017 - Thomson Reuters Employment Alert - "PTO for Partial Day Absences"
  • May 9, 2017 - SHRM Online - "California Update: Attendance Policies May Interfere with Paid-Sick-Leave Rights"
  • January 25, 2017 - SHRM Online - "Generic or Specific Termination Letters: What’s in Your Company’s Best Interest?"
  • January 18, 2017 - SHRM Online - "California Lawmakers Revisit Parental Leave"
  • September 22, 2016 - Bloomberg BNA - "Will Winds of California Fair Pay Law Inspire Federal Legislation?"
  • September 4, 2016 - The Orange County Register - "New equal pay rules prod companies to change wage practices"
  • May 17, 2016 - SHRM Online - "Combining 10-Minute Rest Breaks May—or May Not—Be Lawful in California"
  • May 3, 2016 - SHRM Online - "How Will Expanded Family Leave Affect California Employers"
  • January 11, 2016 - SHRM Online - "California Fair Pay Act Is in Effect"
  • February 25, 2015 - Law360 - "Calif. Family Leave Reforms Won’t Ease Burden On Employers"
  • January 15, 2015 - San Diego Daily Transcript - "Employers Urged to Review Reimbursement Rules"
  • August 25, 2014 - SHRM.org - "Paid Sick Leave: Newest Wrinkle in Coordinating Leave"
  • Best of the Bar – San Diego Business Journal (2014)

Insights by Christopher W. Olmsted