Dean F. Kelley

Of Counsel Milwaukee

Exclusively representing employers in matters relating to OSHA and other health and safety laws; the full range of state and federal employment laws including relating to discrimination, retaliation, hostile work environment harassment, interference and wrongful discharge claims under state and federal laws; wage and hour compliance and litigation defense; independent contractor relationships and agreements; employment contracts; restrictive covenants including non-compete, confidentiality, non-solicitation and invention assignment agreements.


Experience

Dean litigates cases, and counsels employers on legal compliance and dispute avoidance, on a full range of employment issues under state and federal employment laws, including:

  • Whistleblower retaliation and discrimination claims under Section 11(c) of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act and numerous other state and federal laws.
  • Federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), and OSHA state plan enforcement agency, regulatory compliance for general industry and construction; development of standard operating procedures for OSHA citation avoidance and inspection protocols, written health and safety compliance programs, workplace safety rules and training materials; as well as OSHA citation and penalty litigation defense before the federal Occupational Safety & Health Review Commission (OSHRC) and OSHA state plan administrative enforcement agencies and commissions.

Since 2001, Dean has successfully represented employers in hundreds of federal OSHA, and state-plan-state, Citation matters involving millions of dollars in aggregated proposed penalties. A great many of Dean’s litigated OSHA cases have involved alleged willful and/or repeat violations, fatalities, amputations, and explosions. His OSHA cases have covered the full range of general industry and construction safety and health issues including, but not limited to: combustible dust; process safety management; confined space; airborne lead, cadmium and a multitude of other airborne contaminants; lockout/tagout, machine guarding; hazard communication; personnel protective equipment; scaffolding; fall protection; and cranes and derricks in construction.

Examples of Dean’s recent OSHA related successes include:

  • OSHA full withdrawal of alleged combustible dust/General Duty Clause violations.
  • OSHA full withdrawal of alleged willful Subpart CC-Cranes & Derricks in Construction violations.
  • OSHA full withdrawal of citations related to alleged airborne lead overexposures, alleged airborne silica overexposures, and alleged failure to implement feasible administrative/engineering controls.
  • OSHA full withdrawal of entire citation alleging process safety management (PSM)/anhydrous ammonia violations.
  • OSHA full withdrawal of entire citation related to fatal accident and alleged powered industrial truck violation.
  • OSHA full withdrawal of entire citation of alleged combustible liquid/General Duty Clause violations.
  • OSHA full withdrawal of alleged willful violation of construction trenching/protective system violation; alleged failure to utilize trench shield protective system pursuant to manufacturer’s specifications; alleged failure inspect alloyed steel chains; alleged failure to have competent person inspection trench shield protective system.
  • Discrimination, retaliation, hostile work environment harassment, wrongful discharge claims under state and federal laws including the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act; the Americans with Disabilities Act, Wisconsin and other state disability discrimination/accommodation laws; the Wisconsin and federal Family and Medical Leave Acts; the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA); Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act; the Equal Pay Act, Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009; the federal Surface Transportation Assistance Act; and the Wisconsin caregiver and healthcare worker whistleblower protection laws;
  • Wage and hour compliance and litigation defense, including individual employee claims and class and collective actions under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, Wisconsin and other state overtime, minimum wage and employee classification statutes and regulations;
  • Independent contractor issues, including development of independent contractor agreements, compliance with the various state and federal tests for independent contractor status, as well as litigation defense in independent contractor misclassification disputes and litigation;
  • Employment contract development and litigation defense including restrictive covenant development and litigation, regarding non-compete, confidentiality, non-solicitation and invention assignment agreements.

Professional Activities and Speeches

Professional Activities:

  • Vice President and Board of Directors, Greater Milwaukee Safety Council
  • State Bar of Wisconsin
  • Milwaukee Bar Association 

Speeches:

  • Wisconsin Safety Council/75th Annual Safety Conference - ''So OSHA’s On Hyperdrive: What Difference Does That Make To An OSHA Inspection'' - Wisconsin Dells - April 12, 2017
  • Milwaukee Construction Industry Safety Council - ''Negotiating with OSHA – The Employee Misconduct Defense'' - Milwaukee - November 2016
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Safety Symposium - ''OSHA Legal Developments in the Record keeping Arena'' - New Orleans - October 2016
  • Illinois Health and Hospital Association Symposium - ''OSHA – An Employer’s Perspective'' - Peoria - May 2016
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Safety Symposium - ''OSHA and the Courts: What You Need to Know Before Your Next Contact with OSHA'' - Chicago - September 2015
  • Ogletree Deakins Seminar - ''Employment Law Update II – Please Ignore My Performance and Misconduct!'' - Kohler - June 25, 2015
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