Through 20 years of practice, Phillip has developed extensive experience across a broad range of labor and employment law matters representing businesses in many industries. He has become a trusted advisor to large and small clients that need comprehensive practical solutions to workplace legal needs.
Workplace Safety and Health (OSHA and State Agency Investigations)
Phillip has extensive experience representing construction companies and contractors and other employers in handling OSHA fatality, catastrophic, and other injury or illness investigations. Some recent cases include fatalities or catastrophic injuries involving falls, trenches, confined spaces, electrocutions, elevator shafts, heavy construction equipment rollovers, and heavy equipment failures. In most cases, OSHA or the state agency decided not to issue citations or issued citations with substantially lower penalties or citations than initially expected.
Traditional Labor Relations (Staying Union-free)
Phillip helps clients stay union-free through election campaigns, advice and counseling, and supervisor and manager training. He has helped clients win multiple hard-fought union representation campaigns and elections in the nursing home / assisted living, poultry processing, retail, and manufacturing industries.
Congressional Testimony (Oct. 12, 2011) – By special invitation, Phillip testified before the U.S. House Committee on Education and The Workforce in support of the Workforce Democracy and Fairness Act, H.R. 3094 (introduced by Rep. John Kline, R-MN), which would roll back the NLRB's Specialty Healthcare decision (allowing micro-unions) and its proposed rule-making on election procedures (allowing quickie elections). Mr. Russell testified that the WDFA would protect employees' rights to vote on unionization and to obtain adequate information before voting.
Litigation - Unfair Competition and Trade Secrets (Protecting Clients’ Business Investments)
Phillip helps businesses protect investments in their people, trade secrets, and confidential information through employment agreements and litigation. He has obtained multiple injunctions enforcing non-solicitation, non-disclosure, and non-compete restrictive covenants in former key employees’ employment agreements, including obtaining an injunction for a national technology company against its top competitor and a group of former sales executives and an injunction for a national staffing company against a former employee and her new employer.
Litigation – Employment Law (Defending Businesses)
Phillip has defended hundreds of lawsuits filed by former or current employees, including federal and state court lawsuits claiming discrimination, harassment, retaliation, failure to pay minimum wage or overtime compensation, and violations of the FMLA or other leave laws. He has obtained summary judgment for clients in numerous cases had several cases go to bench or jury trials.
Advice and Counseling – Employment Law (Protecting Businesses)
Phillip helps clients protect their businesses through pro-active preventive maintenance advice and counseling. To help them address workplace legal and human resources issues when they arise, he provides advice and counseling through an annual flat-rate Hotline service. Phillip strongly believes in the extensive benefits of training supervisors and managers in understanding their legal roles and responsibilities. He also reviews and revises employee handbooks, policies, and agreements. To help clients best protect their businesses, he also provides audit services to check for compliance issues with policies and practices.