Jon Zimring

Jon Zimring

Shareholder

Jon Zimring is Co-Chair of the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice’s Workforce Compliance & Regulatory Enforcement group. He practices management-side labor and employment law, representing clients before both the courts and administrative agencies, including the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), numerous state and local counterparts to these agencies, and additional other federal, state, and local agencies that investigate, audit compliance with, and enforce labor and employment laws. Drawing on this experience, he also has an active practice assisting employers with prevention through proactive audits, compensation analyses, investigations and consultation, and the development of policies, procedures, systems and training. Jon's practice includes the representation of employers through virtually all workplace issues, including traditional labor relations with unions, affirmative action compliance, wage and hour, leave and disability, and all forms of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation.

Jon recognizes that most employers would prefer to find a way to favorably resolve their employment-related problems rather than spending vast resources in litigation. He focuses on best strategies for avoiding litigation and entanglements with administrative agencies and unions, where such litigation, agency, or union entanglements are ongoing and unavoidable, and how best to resolve them with the least expenditure of time and resources.

For employers who are new as well as established government contractors and/or subcontractors, Jon regularly guides clients in designing and self-auditing affirmative action programs to demonstrate compliance in light of increasingly aggressive OFCCP enforcement efforts, and represents such clients in OFCCP audits.

For employers who have unions, or who find themselves targets of union organizing efforts, Jon works closely with clients in their labor relations, including collective bargaining negotiations, labor disputes and resolution of grievances. He has also counseled employers in many industries facing, among other difficult challenges: high-level sexual harassment complaints; mental health workplace violence and ADA accommodations issues; wage and hour and independent contractor/employee misclassification and payment system problems; and the interplay among the ADA, FMLA, and workers' compensation laws. Jon regularly provides training on these topics to employer audiences ranging from highest level officers and boards of directors to entry level rank and file.

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Capabilities

Experience

  • Represented a federal contractor facing OFCCP notice of violations involving asserted seven-figure liability for minority adverse impact from unvalidated tests. Negotiated OFCCP to resolution with no ongoing hiring obligations.°
  • Represented a federal contractor in compliance review showing substantial female and minority hiring shortfalls and adverse impact in minority terminations. Brought OFCCP administrative closure of compliance review.°
  • Represented a federal contractor in compliance review related to compensation where contractor submitted compensation data showing significant gender-based compensation disparities. Brought OFCCP administrative closure of compliance review.°
  • Counseled a federal contractor in order to avoid continued multi-establishment targeting by OFCCP. Guided client through critical self-analysis and self-audit of affirmative action program to develop more effective monitoring and reporting systems to satisfy current OFCCP enforcement initiatives.°
  • Represented a federal contractor facing OFCCP notice of violations involving gender-based adverse impact in hiring. Used Title VII damages and mitigation principles and related legal arguments to negotiate OFCCP down to a resolution.°
  • Acted as counsel to new federal contractors in developing affirmative action programs to achieve voluntary compliance with changing OFCCP requirements, building human resources systems to support such programs, and training human resources personnel and managers to facilitate both the annual generation of affirmative action plans and the maintenance of a successful overall affirmative action program at a predictable and manageable yearly cost.°
  • Represented employers evaluating the acquisition of union workforces, negotiating new collective bargaining agreements, and navigating successorship issues.°
  • Acted as counsel to engineering, health care and construction employers in ERISA audit and collection disputes with union pension and health and welfare funds, defending funds' litigation and/or negotiating resolutions of such matters.°
  • Represented a construction industry employer in connection with IRS and Department of Labor investigations arising out of claims by a health and welfare and pension fund of illegal subcontracting to evade ERISA obligations.°
  • Represented a nationwide retailer relating to union misconduct during an election campaign petitioning the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a decision of the NLRB.°
  • Acted as counsel to manufacturing and health care businesses in the conduct of counter-organizing campaigns and representation cases before the NLRB, thwarting union efforts to organize and defending unfair labor practice charges arising from the campaigns.°
  • Counseled a large educational institution with a mentally disabled employee exhibiting potentially threatening behavior through a variety of legal issues. The result protected the workplace and neutralized ADA litigation threatened by the employee's attorney through the effective use of ADA's interactive process.°
  • Designed and conducted diversity training, harassment training, ADA and FMLA training, USERRA training, wage and hour training, hiring, performance review and discipline and discharge training and other programs for upper- and mid-level management for employers ranging from a nationwide Fortune 500 financial services client to numerous small employers operating at a single site.°
  • Acted as counsel to many employers, including health care facilities and professional services firms, to investigate and resolve claimed harassment of employees by residents, clients, customers, supervisors and coworkers. Have conducted sexual, racial, religious and national origin harassment investigations, prepared or counseled employers on the preparation of investigation reports and counseled on both specific and systemic measures to minimize the risk of lawsuits or liability.°
  • Designed and implemented preventive human resources systems, including development of new policies, reworking of hiring practices, training of managers and rank and file, job descriptions, performance review systems and disciplinary procedures, which ended cycle of repeated employment litigation against construction industry client.°
  • Represented a hospitality industry client in wage and hour class action alleging failure to pay overtime and misclassification. Achieved court-approved six-figure global resolution.°
  • Represented a pharmaceuticals manufacturer defending pregnancy and gender discrimination claims by high-achieving sales representative. Developed facts during discovery that led to plaintiff's counsel voluntarily dismissing the action.°
  • Represented a Fortune 100 financial services firm in defense of sexual harassment and gender discrimination claims and retaliation in connection with the termination of a branch manager. Won summary judgment on all claims and defended appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.°
  • Represented a publicly traded telecommunications company defending multiple common law and ERISA claims in connection with denial of severance benefits. Avoided discovery, then won summary judgment on all counts.°
  • Represented an affordable housing employer in defense of a wage and hour class action for unpaid overtime based on misclassification. Reduced the scope of a potentially large class and achieved a global settlement based only on the amount claimed by the individual named plaintiff.°
  • Represented a closely held retailer defending allegations of workers' compensation retaliatory discharge. Won defense verdict.°
  • Acted as counsel to a multinational fast food franchisor in numerous ADA, Title VII, ADEA and employment tort cases. All won on dispositive motions or settled — most for less than $20,000 — with demands as high as $50 million.°
  • Acted as counsel to a publicly traded office supply and services company defending lawsuits alleging violations of the ADEA, ERISA, ADA, VEVRA and breach of employment contract, all of which were either settled on terms the client found favorable or won on dispositive motion and defended before the Illinois Appellate Court or the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.°
  • Acted as counsel to an online university in connection with multiple sexual and racial harassment, disability, wage and hour, discrimination, and whistleblower claims. Matters won, averted or resolved on terms favorable to the client.°

°The above representations were handled by Mr. Zimring prior to his joining Greenberg Traurig, LLP.

Recognition & Leadership

  • Listed, Leading Lawyers Network, 2007-2018
  • Listed, Super Lawyers magazine, Illinois Super Lawyers, 2010-2015
  • Listed, The Chicago Law Bulletin, "40 Under 40," 2006
  • Member, DirectEmployers Compliance Advisory Board

Credentials

Education
  • J.D., Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, 1992
  • B.A., with high honors, University of Michigan, 1989
Admissions
  • Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
  • Supreme Court of Illinois