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Employment Law

At Buelow Vetter, we understand that evolving trends and technology are constantly driving change in the laws governing the workplace. For more than four decades, our attorneys have represented management in all areas of employment law, because we enjoy the challenge of acting as your advocate and working to safeguard your interests.

 

Our attorneys regularly defend against claims of discrimination, harassment and retaliation brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act and similar federal and state laws. Not only do we defend lawsuits in federal and state courts, we can protect your organization against discrimination charges brought before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and similar state agencies.

We frequently work with our clients to develop policies to protect against discrimination and harassment in the workplace. In addition, our team regularly conducts management and supervisory training to minimize the potential for a claim. In cases where employees have filed a complaint under an internal policy, we can conduct an internal investigation to make sure all the necessary information is gathered and considered. We also defend educational institutions against Title IX claims, assist in drafting affirmative action plans and we handle OFCCP and other types of federal compliance audits.

You can count on Buelow Vetter’s depth and breadth of experience, as well as our commitment to scanning the evolving employment law landscape to alert you to any changes and prepare strategies to protect your interests.

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HR/Personnel

At Buelow Vetter, we understand how important it is to carefully manage all aspects of the employment lifecycle to ensure that your organization is following the myriad of laws related to hiring, managing, and, if necessary, even terminating employees.

Need Help Managing Your Employment Lifecycle?

An efficient and effective hiring process is essential to ensure that you not only secure the best talent for your organization, but helps you provide an optimal candidate experience. Our attorneys regularly work with clients to create processes that help them fill vacancies in their workforce, including drafting and reviewing applications, offer letters and other important documents. Additionally, we can guide your human resources team by training managers and other decisions makers who may be involved in screening applicants, conducting interviews and any background and reference checks that may be utilized through the hiring process.

 

Many organizations and job functions require pre-employment screening tests to ensure workplace safety and optimal performance. Buelow Vetter attorneys routinely work with clients to ensure that their testing practices are in compliance with all state and federal anti-discrimination laws.

 

Unfortunately, sometimes employees either fail to meet the requirements of their position or they behave in a manner that is grounds for their dismissal. We understand that these challenges are not pleasant for any organization, which is why Buelow Vetter is standing by to help you properly assess and notify employees regarding any performance issues, what they should do to improve their standing, and ensure that all appropriate actions have been taken in the event you need to sever ties with employees.

Need Help Managing Leave Issues?

Buelow Vetter attorneys regularly advise employers on employee leave issues arising under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), including the complex notice, posting, and record keeping requirements. We can assist with reviewing policies, procedures and forms to ensure your organization is in compliance with state, federal and local laws. In addition, we provide you with support in the evaluation and processing of leave requests,as well as defending charges of FMLA discrimination filed with the Department of Labor and state agencies, and FMLA lawsuits filed in state and federal courts.

 

If you need advice regarding employee leave issues that arise under the Americans with Disabilities Act and its state law counterparts, state and federal workers’ compensation laws and military leave laws, we’re standing by to help. We understand that the duty of reasonable accommodation is a particularly complex legal issue that requires extensive knowledge and experience that you will find at Buelow Vetter.

Learn More About Effective Employee Handbooks

At Buelow Vetter, we believe that employee handbooks are a strong foundation for any organization, whether it’s a global corporation with a large workforce or a small business with only a few employees. Not only do employee handbooks set forth expectations between the employer and employee, they clearly communicate the rules and benefits that come with being a member of your team. Additionally, handbooks provide information on what employees can wear in the workplace, how they should behave, how they will be compensated, rewarded and disciplined in the event of infractions.

 

If you need advice on how to develop your first employee handbook, or want to ensure that your documents are up-to-date with current labor and employment law, we are here to help.

Are Your Policies Up to Date?

Well-written policies and procedures are essential to assist your employees with clearly understanding their roles and responsibilities within your organization. Simply put, policies and procedures allow leadership to guide operations without the need to constantly intervene, which can lead to increased productivity and efficiency within any organization. Furthermore, they clarify issues and activities that are of critical importance to the organization, such as health and safety, legal liabilities, regulatory requirements or issues that could have potentially serious consequences.

 

The team at Buelow Vetter has extensive experience with helping clients draft comprehensive employment policies and procedures to meet a variety of needs and ensure a safe and productive workplace. In addition, we can help you establish and implement substance abuse testing and prevention programs, as well as policies and procedures addressing violence in the workplace.

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Discrimination & Harassment

Bad employee behavior is not unique to your business. It happens everywhere. We help you when a crisis hits, but we are also proactive in helping you prevent future issues by implementing strong policies and processes that are aligned with the evolving law.

 

Buelow Vetter attorneys regularly defend employers against claims of discrimination, harassment and retaliation brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and similar federal and state laws.

 

Additionally, if you seek counsel on all forms of employment discrimination as well as claims of retaliation, we are here to help. We provide sound advice on the wide variety of actions you take as an employer, including hiring and recruitment, compensation and benefits, transfers and promotions, layoffs and recalls and discipline and discharge.

 

Finally, our attorneys can assist you with designing policies against discrimination and harassment, conducting management and supervisory training, and guiding your organization in the internal investigation of harassment and discrimination claims.

 

We facilitate in the drafting of affirmative action plans, conducting Affirmative Action Plan Audits, and representing you in the event of an OFCCP compliance audit.

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Mergers, Acquisition, Restructuring & Downsizing

If a merger, acquisition or downsizing in on the horizon within your organization, there are a myriad of labor, employment and employee benefits law issues that arise. Our experienced attorneys provide sound advice – for both buyers and sellers – on issues such as reductions in force, downsizing, severance packages, ERISA, multi-employer pension plan withdrawal liability, health plan and other benefit plan termination issues, hiring, union bargaining and representation rights, and decision and effects bargaining.
When it is necessary to downsize current operations, our attorneys offer counsel on compliance with the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act and similar state statutes, severance pay, COBRA issues, avoidance of discrimination claims, and compliance with the Older Workers Benefits Protection Act.

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Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs

If your organization needs to review affirmative action plans, develop appropriate OFCCP desk audit responses and assistance when the OFCCP conducts an on-site audit, the team at Buelow Vetter is here to provide support. We work closely with our clients to prepare management teams and with OFCCP’s compliance officers during interviews and evaluations, to ensure your employment practices and affirmative action plan is explained completely and accurately. When the OFCCP issues findings, our attorneys have the experience to represent you in negotiation and litigation.

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Public Sector

Buelow Vetter has one of the most distinguished public sector employment law practices in Wisconsin. We are dedicated to effectively advising and representing states, cities, counties, school boards, and other state governmental bodies, in the entire range of employment law matters. You can count on Buelow Vetter to help resolve any employment law issues that may occur in a cost efficient manner.

Looking for a Partner in Public Sector Law?

As a public employer, you are subject not only to the innumerable employment laws that govern private sector employers, but the dictates of the State and Federal Constitutions, including procedural due process, equal protection, first amendment and privacy rights, and the fourth amendment’s protection against unreasonable searches. If you are currently experiencing an employee-related claim, or looking to prevent future claims, Buelow Vetter brings a wealth of knowledge in advising you on all of these issues and more.

Looking for a Partner in Public Sector Law?

Buelow Vetter has represented hundreds of public sector clients in employee disciplinary proceedings. Not only do we have the expertise to guide you with the effective handling of employee disciplinary actions – including advising on due process issues – we often work with our clients to develop policies and processes to prevent future infractions.

Looking for a Partner in Public Sector Law?

Police and Fire agencies present unique legal problems, which require unique legal responses. Our firm has the depth and breadth of experience necessary to effectively represent the interests of law enforcement management, including providing representation in police and fire commission hearings.

Looking for a Partner in Public Sector Law?

If you are experiencing challenges in dealing with the Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS), Buelow Vetter can provide advice and assist you with handling claims under the WRS.

Looking for a Partner in Public Sector Law?

Our attorneys regularly advise public entities on issues arising under the Open Meetings Law, including the legal bases to meet in closed session, agendas, minutes and defense of complaints filed by citizens or the media.

If you need assistance in complying with Public Records Law, especially the complex issues involving the release of disciplinary and other personnel records, Buelow Vetter has a breadth of experience in handling unique and complex Public Records Law requests – both e-document and traditional paper requests. We are prepared to help you respond quickly and comprehensively to demands.

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Unfair Trade Competition & Trade Secrets

Buelow Vetter attorneys have the experience to help your organization to secure your proprietary information, safeguard trade secrets and prevent unfair competition, including drafting covenants not to compete and non-solicitation, non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements. We can also assist you in developing strategies designed to prevent your employees from misappropriating trade secrets and other proprietary information.

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Wage & Hour Law

The dramatic increase in wage and hour claims in recent years has made compliance a crucial issue for employers. Buelow Vetter attorneys have many years of experience in helping employers comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Davis Bacon Act, the Service Contract Act, and similar state laws. We work with our clients to determine if employees are exempt or nonexempt under the FLSA, We also assist our clients in the complexities of determining the “regular rate” for calculating overtime pay. Additionally, we can also advise you on record keeping requirements to ensure your practices are protecting your interests.

 

We have successfully represented clients in investigations and enforcement actions conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division and the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development. We also defend employers in wage and hour lawsuits involving overtime, meal and break periods, prevailing wages, and other wage and hour issues in federal and state courts.

 

Additionally, as the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) evolves the number of class action lawsuits against employers has risen, and we stand ready to represent you in the event your organization is facing FLSA litigation.

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Workers’ Compensation

Buelow Vetter provides employers with proactive advice and recommendations in this complicated area of employment law. Not only can we help your organization reduce the chances for workplace injuries, we ensure that in the event a claim is filed, you are well-positioned in the event of litigation. Additionally, we regularly assist our clients on disability issues.

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Workplace Safety & Health

Buelow Vetter offers advice and assistance in complying with federal and state workplace safety laws and regulations, including the Occupational, Safety and Health Act (OSHA) and comparable state laws. We are standing by to represent you during safety and health inspections and in enforcement actions brought by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Mine Safety and Health Administration, and state safety agencies. We also defend your interests against whistleblower claims investigated by OSHA, as well as under various state laws.

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