Practice and Industry Groups

Shafeeqa W. Giarratani

Office Managing Shareholder Austin

Shafeeqa Giarratani is co-managing shareholder of the Austin office of Ogletree Deakins. She represents employers in federal and state court and before administrative agencies and regulatory agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Texas Workforce Commission, and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.

Shafeeqa has been recognized both locally and nationally as a skilled advocate. Shafeeqa was named by Law 360 as a 2016 Rising Star, one of only seven employment lawyers in the country to receive such a distinction. Shafeeqa has also been named repeatedly as a Super Lawyer – Texas Rising Star and was featured in Bloomberg BNA for her commitment to her clients.

She is a strong advocate for her clients and regularly handles litigation matters at both the trial and appellate level, in alternative dispute resolution and before governmental agencies. Shafeeqa has represented management in civil rights, wrongful discharge, Family and Medical Leave Act, Fair Labor Standards Act, employment tort, defamation, breach of contract, tortious interference and other employment-related charges and litigation.

Shafeeqa also specializes in advising clients on whistleblower employment issues, in particular retaliation cases under the False Claims Act. She advises clients on appropriate handling of whistleblowers and regularly handles litigation in this area.

Shafeeqa also regularly advises clients that are federal contractors on affirmative action, legislative and regulatory changes affecting employment matters for federal contractors and Office of Federal Contract Compliance Program (OFCCP) compliance issues, from developing affirmative action plans to representing companies during the audit process.

Shafeeqa also performs supervisory training seminars, prepares and reviews personnel handbooks and policies and advises clients regarding employee retention and termination.


Experience

Litigation and Appeals

  • Argued before the Fifth Circuit Title VII case regarding retaliation and hostile work environment and achieved affirmance on appeal of dismissal
  • Argued before the Fifth Circuit workers' compensation retaliation case and achieved affirmance on appeal of dismissal
  • Argued before the Third Court of Appeals and achieved affirmance on appeal of dismissal for a leading manufacturer of microcontrollers, microprocessors and semiconductors in a race discrimination lawsuit
  • Lead attorney (First-chair) for a technology company in a sex and pregnancy wrongful termination and promotion federal jury trial, which resulted in a defense verdict
  • Lead attorney (First-chair) for a technology company in an age discrimination wrongful termination state jury trial, which resulted in a defense verdict
  • Lead attorney in preparing briefing and oral argument before the Third Court of Appeals for Texas in a retaliation, gender and race discrimination case
  • Lead attorney in arguing summary judgment in Texas state court for discrimination and retaliation claim, which resulted in dismissal of entire case
  • Lead attorney in arguing complex discovery issues in a Motion to Compel hearing in a defamation case, which resulted in a favorable verdict and led to voluntary dismissal of the case
  • Second-chair for a semiconductor company in an age discrimination wrongful termination federal jury trial, which resulted in a defense verdict
  • Second-chair for a high-tech company in an age discrimination failure to promote arbitration, which resulted in a defense verdict
  • Served on team of attorneys for a trucking company in an sex discrimination wrongful termination arbitration, which resulted in a defense verdict
  • Served on team of attorneys for a high-tech company in a multi-plaintiff arbitration involving failure to promote and wrongful termination claims, which resulted in a favorable verdict
  • Secured favorable rulings on summary judgment for an insurance company in a workers' compensation retaliation lawsuit
  • Secured favorable rulings on summary judgment for a construction company in a Fair Labor Standards Act lawsuit
  • Assisted in preparing an appellate brief in an employment retaliation case before the Texas Court of Appeals and Texas Supreme Court, which resulted in a ruling for the employer
  • Assisted in preparing an appellate brief in a patent infringement case before the Federal Circuit
  • Served as first-chair in over 15 jury trials for the City of Austin, which resulted in successful verdicts

Government Investigations, Audits and False Claims Act

  • Lead attorney in defending a financial services company in an OFCCP compensation audit, which resulted in a finding of compliance by the OFCCP
  • Lead attorney in defending a large hospital in an OFCCP hiring practices audit, which resulted in a finding of full compliance by the OFCCP
  • Lead attorney in defending high-tech company in an OFCCP audit, which resulted in a finding of compliance by the OFCCP
  • Lead attorney in defending a consulting company in an OFCCP audit, which resulted in a finding of compliance by the OFCCP
  • Lead attorney in defending a paper company in an OFCCP audit, which resulted in a finding of compliance by the OFCCP
  • Lead attorney in contesting OFCCP jurisdiction of a large financial services company, which resulted in a finding of no jurisdiction by the OFCCP
  • Served on team of attorneys in negotiating a conciliation agreement with the OFCCP, which resulted in a favorable settlement to the company
  • Lead attorney in handling Department of Labor audit, which resulted in a finding of full compliance
  • Lead attorney in handling False Claims Act retaliation investigation
  • Lead attorney in handling False Claims Act retaliation lawsuit which resulted in successful resolution for client
  • Lead attorney in handling numerous EEOC investigations, resulting in finding of no cause

Counseling, Training and Litigation Readiness

  • Regularly advises clients on comprehensive trade secret protection and prepares enforceable covenants not to compete and non-disclosure agreements
  • Regularly advises clients on handling whistleblower and retaliation complaints, investigations and claims
  • Assists clients in preparing compliance plans for handling whistleblowers in the workplace
  • Regularly provides counseling on a multitude of employment related issues, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, Family Medical Leave Act and Fair Labor Standards Act compliance
  • Assisted multiple clients in establishing and performing self-audits of employment practices, including compensation
  • Prepared litigation readiness and avoidance analysis and seminars and training for senior leadership teams, human resources, managers and employees

Professional Activities and Speeches

Professional Activities:

  • Any Baby Can - Board Member
  • National ILG - Board Member
  • Austin Industry Liaison Group (AILG) - Co-Founder
  • San Antonio Industry Liaison Group (SAILG) - Board Member/Legal Liaison
  • Austin Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section, former Chair
  • American Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section

Speeches:

  • Labor and Employment Counsel Exclusive - ''"The Never Ending Story": Litigating Retaliation Claims'' - Boca Raton - November 09, 2017
  • Arkansas ILG - ''The Gender Gap was Not Built in a Day and Neither are the Solutions – A Holistic Approach to Pay” and “Navigating Compliance with Complex Recruiting Strategies'' - Little Rock - October 25, 2017
  • Corporate Paralegal Group CLE - ''Whistleblowers'' - Austin - October 24, 2017
  • American Employment Law Council Conference Panelist - ''Federal Contractor Update – Compliance with OFCCP-enforced Obligations'' - Dana Point - October 20, 2017
  • San Antonio Human Resource Management Association’s 11th Annual Employment Law Conference - ''Leaves, Leaves and More Leaves! Successfully Managing the Most Difficult Situations'' - San Antonio - August 23, 2017
  • 2017 ILG National Conference - ''Navigating Compliance with Complex Recruiting Strategies'' - San Antonio - August 02, 2017
  • 2017 ILG National Conference - ''The Gender Gap Was Not Built in a Day and Neither Are the Solutions—A Holistic Approach to Pay'' - San Antonio - August 02, 2017
  • 2017 Austin Human Resource Management Association (AHRMA) Annual Conference - ''Bridging the Gap—An Update on Pay Equity'' - Austin - July 27, 2017
  • The University of Texas School of Law 24th Annual Labor and Employment Labor Conference - Pay Equity Panel - ''Pay Equity: Origins and Obligations'' - Austin - June 12, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - ''Call the Hotline? Constructing a Whistleblower/Internal Complaint Program'' - San Diego - May 05, 2017
  • Client Seminar - ''Legal Leadership'' - Austin - May 03, 2017
  • Texas Society for Human Resource Management Legislative Conference - ''OFCCP Updates: How to Prepare your Organization'' - Austin - April 20, 2017
  • 2016 Austin Game Conference - ''You Need a Lawyer (Probably More Than One)'' - Austin - September 21, 2016
  • The OFCCP Institute Annual Summit Agenda - ''Adverse Impact Analysis” and “Audit Insights: Strategies for Submitting Non-Compensation Data'' - Washington - May 4 - May 5, 2016
  • The University of Texas School of Law 23rd Annual Labor and Employment Law Conference - ''Who Me, a Federal Contractor: Federal (Sub)Contractor Jurisdiction, Obligations and New Developments'' - Austin - May 03, 2016
  • Practicing Law Institute – OFCCP & Government Contractors 2016: Effective Approaches to Compliance and Audits Seminar - ''OFCCP’s New and Expanded Compliance Review Focus and Contractor Strategies for Dealing with OFCCP’s Approach'' - New York - February 03, 2016
  • State Bar of Texas 24th Annual Advanced Employment Law Course - ''Pitfalls in Settlements: An Ethical Standard Settlement Agreement for Texas'' - Dallas - January 14 - January 15, 2016
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Media

Media Quotes

November 01, 2017 - SHRM Online - "Can an Executive Employment Agreement Excuse Bad Behavior?"
October 26, 2017 - SHRM Online - "Can an Employee Waive the Right to Bring a Sexual Harassment Claim?"

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