Matthew K. Johnson

Shareholder Greenville

Matthew K. Johnson is a shareholder in the Greenville office and represents employers in all aspects of employment and labor law before state and federal agencies and in state and federal courts including, among others, matters under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 1981, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and similar federal and state laws. Mr. Johnson regularly counsels clients in issues pertaining to multistate leave compliance, including drafting and review of policies related to paid sick leave and family leave issues arising under state and local law. In addition, he provides counsel and on a variety of employment and labor law matters including terminations, disciplinary actions, and preventive maintenance such as the development and implementation of policies and procedures.

Before joining Ogletree Deakins, Mr. Johnson worked in a general litigation and insurance defense practice and is experienced in civil litigation and trial practice, including construction litigation, commercial litigation, railroad and transportation, product liability, and premises liability matters. Mr. Johnson continues to use his prior experience in assisting Ogletree Deakins’ clients in construction and commercial matters.

Mr. Johnson attended Rhodes College, where he majored in philosophy.  He attended the University of Memphis’ Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law and clerked for the Honorable D’Army Bailey of the Shelby County Circuit Court. Afterward, Mr. Johnson returned home to Greenville to begin the private practice of law.

Mr. Johnson has been active as Chair of the City of Greenville Planning Commission, which makes recommendations to City Council on zoning and annexation issues, reviews and approves new subdivisions, and is involved in comprehensive planning to improve the health and welfare of the public.


Experience

Mr. Johnson regularly handles a variety of employment and labor law matters, including general counseling, preparation of policies and procedures, union campaigns, and employment litigation.  Over the last several years, in addition to handling wrongful termination, pregnancy discrimination, disability discrimination, and race discrimination claims, his practice has become more focused on the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA).  Mr. Johnson regularly assists employers in drafting appropriate policies and procedures related to uniformed service leaves, assessing and avoiding risk in related HR practices, and defending employers in USERRA matters, including failure to hire, failure to reinstate, pay and benefits entitlement, and harassment claims.

Before turning his attention primarily to employment matters, Mr. Johnson’s gained substantial experience in general litigation and commercial litigation.  In order to provide the most client service possible, he continues to assist the firm’s clients in these areas.  Finally, Mr. Johnson’s general litigation background has allowed him to assist the firm’s construction clients in construction litigation matters.

Reported Cases:

  • Gilbert v. Miller, 356 S.C. 25, 586 S.E.2d 861 (S.C. App. 2003)

Professional Activities and Speeches

Professional Activities:

  • South Carolina Bar Association (Labor & Employment Law Section, Member; Vice Chair - Employment and Labor Law Section, 2017; Newsletter Coordinator, 2015-2016; Torts & Insurance Practice Section, Chairperson-Elect, 2004; Chairperson, 2005)
  • Greenville County Bar Association (Executive Council, 2004-2009; Judicial Relations Liaison, 2004-2006, 2008-2009; Client Relations, 2007-2008)
  • American Bar Association
  • South Carolina Defense Trial Attorneys’ Association
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Greater Greenville Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Greenville, Class 34
  • United Way of Greenville County
  • Fourth Presbyterian Church
  • Upstate South Carolina Alliance
  • City of Greenville Planning Commission
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Great Lakes Jerusalem Program, Israel (1990)
  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy (May 1999)

Speeches:

  • Labor and Employment Counsel Exclusive - ''The Dizzying Array of State and Local Employment Laws: Round 1-Leave Entitlements'' - Boca Raton - November 09, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''Paid Sick Leave Laws Update—The Latest Compliance Challenges'' - San Diego - May 05, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''Pardon the Interruption! Workplace Strategies Style'' - San Diego - May 05, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''The State of the States: Late-Breaking Update on State Laws (and Some Local Ones)'' - San Diego - May 04, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''Paid Sick Leave Laws—Policy Challenges for Employers'' - San Antonio - May 15, 2015
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Year-End Review'' - Greenville - January 20, 2015
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Workplace Violence and Bullying'' - Greenville - December 16, 2014
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Year-End Review'' - Greenville - January 21, 2014
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Workplace Violence and Bullying'' - Greenville - December 17, 2013
  • Spartanburg Development Association, Human Resources Law Update - ''The Evolving Face of Discrimination - Expanded Protected Categories'' - Spartanburg - February 26, 2013
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Year-End Review'' - Greenville - January 15, 2013
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Workplace Violence and Bullying'' - Greenville - December 18, 2012
  • Ogletree Deakins Webinar - ''Voting Leave'' - October 24, 2012
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''When Johnny (and Suzie) Comes Marching Home: A Refresher on Uniformed Service Members' Rights and Employers' Obligations Under USERRA'' - Phoenix - May 11, 2012
  • Spartanburg Development Association, Human Resources Law Update - ''Avoiding Unnecessary Headaches - Employee Claims, Charges & Lawsuits'' - Spartanburg - February 28, 2012
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Year-End Review'' - Greenville - January 17, 2012
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Workplace Bullying'' - Greenville - December 13, 2011
  • Spartanburg Development Association - ''Independent Contractor Misclassification and the New IRS 'Safe Harbor''' - Spartanburg - December 02, 2011
  • Ogletree Deakins Webinar - ''When Johnny (and Suzie) Comes Marching Home: A Refresher on Uniformed Service Members' Rights and Employers' Obligations Under USERRA'' - December 01, 2011
  • BLR Webinar - ''Employment Bias: How To Comply with the U.S. Supreme Court's Brand-New Pro-Employee Ruling in Staub'' - May 09, 2011
  • Ogletree Deakins Breakfast Briefing - ''The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act'' - Greenville - February 03, 2011
  • Greenville Technical College, Certificate in Employee Relations Law Series - ''Year-End Review (including Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act and Case Law Update)'' - Greenville - January 18, 2011
  • Spartanburg Development Association Year-End HR Briefing - ''2010 Case Law Update'' - Spartanburg - December 03, 2010
  • NC/SC Bar Labor and Employment Law Seminar - ''2010 Case Law Update'' - Asheville - October 22, 2010

Published Works

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Our Insights

Media

Media Quotes

July 14, 2014 - Law360 - "EEOC Pregnancy Bias Guidance May Tee Up High Court Clash"
May 01, 2011 - Inside Counsel - "USERRA Ruling Validates Cat's Paw Theory of Discrimination"
March 23, 2010 - SHRM.org - "USERRA Rehire Obligation Varies After Layoffs"

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