Phillip Kitzer Presents at Eighth Circuit Employment Conference in Des Moines, IA

On April 26, 2024, Phillip Kitzer co-presented at the Eighth Circuit chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association conference in Des Moines, Iowa, along with attorney David Albrecht of Fiedler Law Firm. Their session, titled “Eighth Circuit Case Law Update,” offered a comprehensive review of important court decisions affecting employees at the district, appellate, and Supreme Court levels. Their  presentation helped employment attorneys throughout the Eighth Circuit better understand the key legal changes and how they impact the field of employment law.

Phillip is a regular presenter at state, regional, and national employment conferences. If you have questions about Minnesota employment law and how recent court decisions may affect you, contact us today.

Phillip Kitzer and Brian Rochel both Present at National NELA Employment Law Conference

The National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) held its Annual Convention in Chicago, Illinois from June 28 through July 1, 2023. NELA is the largest organization of lawyers who represent workers in the United States and is focused exclusively on advancing employee rights and making the workplace better for all Americans.

The Annual Convention is the largest meeting of NELA members each year. The Annual Convention provides several days of intensive, high-quality continuing legal education (CLE) training for employment lawyers. Both Brian Rochel and Phillip Kitzer  were invited to speak at the Convention—an honor that very few members are given.

Brian presented on a panel entitled “Putting Theory Into Practice: Effectively Litigating Age Discrimination Claims.” The panel provided a detailed discussion and strategies for plaintiff’s advocates to use in representing employees in age discrimination claims.

Phillip presented on a panel entitled “25 Years After Faragher-Ellerth.” The panel provided in-depth updates on the state of employment law as it relates to the the use of the “Faragher-Ellerth” affirmative defense in sexual harassment claims.

Phillip and Brian regularly speak on employment law topics and present around the country. If you have questions about employment law please do not hesitate to contact us.

Mayor Jacob Frey Praises Kitzer Rochel at Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

On June 6, 2023, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey proclaimed it “Kitzer Rochel Day” in the City of Minneapolis. Mayor Frey praised the law firm’s commitment to fighting discrimination and retaliation in Minneapolis and throughout Minnesota. Mayor Frey made the announcement at Kitzer Rochel, PLLP’s ribbon cutting ceremony, celebrating the law firm’s new office in the Capella Tower in Downtown Minneapolis.

Kitzer Rochel, a boutique employee rights law firm, has been located in downtown Minneapolis since its founding in 2020. The law firm is committed to staying in downtown Minneapolis and helping the City continue its great work recovering in the wake of the pandemic.

For more information about Kitzer Rochel and questions about employment law, contact us today.

Brian Rochel to Present on Multiple CLEs at 2023 Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute (ELI)

Brian Rochel will be presenting on two separate CLE panels at the 2023 Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute (ELI), on May 18-19, 2023, in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

First, Brian will be moderating a panel titled, “From Remote Work to Quiet Quitting and Work-Life Balance–Acting on Changing Perceptions and Realities Around Work and Workplaces.” The panel will explore a range of interconnected topics, focusing on the post-COVID workplace and employees’ changing perceptions and expectations.

Second, Brian will participate in a panel focusing on employment remedies and damages available in lawsuits. The panel is titled, “What’s the Harm: Evaluating and Proving Damages.”

The Upper Midwest ELI is one of the largest and most highly regarded employment law events in the country, featuring speakers from across the United States and drawing participants from various states in the midwest.

Brian Rochel Testifies at Minnesota Senate in Favor of Noncompete Ban

On March 15, 2023, the Minnesota Senate Judiciary Committee heard testimony on a bill that would ban noncompete agreements in Minnesota. Brian Rochel testified as an expert on the bill, SF 405, explaining how noncompete agreements harm workers and the economy.

The bill passed the Judiciary Committee and is moving quickly through the legislature.

If you have questions about noncompete agreements, including Minnesota and federal laws seeking to stop the problematic spread of noncompete agreements, please contact Kitzer Rochel.

Kitzer Rochel Recognized by Benchmark Litigation 2023

Kitzer Rochel, PLLP, a boutique employment litigation law firm in Minneapolis, MN, is pleased to announce that the firm and its lawyers were recognized in Benchmark Litigation’s 2023 guide. The annual guide identifies leading litigators and law firms using extensive research methods and in-depth interviews with practitioners, dispute resolution specialists, and clients.

Partners Phillip Kitzer and Brian Rochel each received the directory’s distinguished honor of “Labor and Employment Star,” as recognized by peers and members of the labor and employment law community.

Click here for more details about Phillip Kitzer and Brian Rochel. If you have questions about employment law or would like to learn more about Kitzer Rochel, please contact us.

And please visit Benchmark Litigation’s website for more information on its 2023 rankings. About Benchmark Litigation (www.benchmarklitigation.com)

Since its inception in 2008, Benchmark Litigation has been the only publication on the market to focus exclusively on litigation in the US. The Benchmark brand has grown dramatically and garnered industry-wide accolades as the definitive hub for in-depth analysis of the players shaping the dynamic practice of litigation.

Brian Rochel and Phillip Kitzer Recognized as Super Lawyers

Kitzer Rochel is proud to announce that Brian Rochel and Phillip Kitzer have both been selected as a Minnesota Super Lawyer in 2022. Attorneys are selected based on their professional accomplishments and leadership skills.

Both Mr. Rochel and Mr. Kitzer are highly dedicated attorneys who practice on behalf of employees involved in a wide variety of employment-related legal disputes. They represent whistleblowers and other employees who are wrongfully terminated, discriminated and/or retaliated against. Mr. Rochel serves on the Board of Directors for the Minnesota Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association, and Mr. Kitzer serves on the Governing Counsel for the Labor and Employment Law Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association. Mr. Rochel and Mr. Kitzer are each certified as Labor and Employment Law Specialists by the Minnesota State Bar Association.

If you would like to consult with Mr. Kitzer or Mr. Rochel, please contact us today.

Brian Rochel Presents at CLE on Minnesota Employment Law

On March 30, 2022, Brian Rochel presented on a panel entitled “McDonnell Douglas and the Direct Method – A New Normal on the Horizon?” The presentation focused on the McDonnell Douglas (or indirect) burden shifting method for proving discrimination and retaliation claims. The Minnesota Supreme Court is currently deciding whether Minnesota courts will continue applying the McDonnell Douglas framework. In Hanson v. DNR, the Supreme Court was asked to abolish use of the McDonnell Douglas framework because it has become problematic over the several decades it has developed.

Hanson, along with amici curiae Minnesota NELA and ELA-UM, argued that McDonnell Douglas has been misused on Rule 56 and resulted in dismissing employment claims that should appropriately be tried to a jury.

In the March 30 CLE, Brian laid out the arguments made by the employee in Hanson, and the panelists discussed the pros and cons of McDonnell Douglas in employment litigation–as well as what employment litigation may look like in the absence of the familiar framework.

The panel also discussed Friend v. Gopher Company, Inc., a Minnesota Court of Appeals case holding that McDonnell Douglas is not required to be applied in every case. Brian argued that means that regardless of the Supreme Court’s decision in Hanson v. DNR, employees may still choose to forego McDonnell Douglas in favor of the “direct method” to prove cases at trial and present evidence on summary judgment.

A decision is expected in Hanson v. DNR soon, check back for more updates. If you have questions about Minnesota employment law, proving claims of discrimination or retaliation, or related topics, please contact us.

Phillip Kitzer Presents on COVID-19 Employment Issues to Minnesota Lawyers

On December 8, 2020, Phillip Kitzer presented “COVID-19: A Plaintiffs’ Employment Attorney’s Perspective” to the Minnesota chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association along with Elizabeth Binczik, attorney at Fabian May & Anderson, PLLP.

The program covered a variety of employment issues that arise for Minnesota employees during the COVID-19 pandemic. Whether working from home under a stay-at-home order or caring for a child when school is closed, the pandemic has affected nearly every employee in the state. Phillip and Elizabeth discussed various laws that apply to employers during this time through programs such as the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”), but also how employer bias and discrimination related to COVID-19 can violate employee protection laws.

If you feel you have experienced discrimination or retaliation at work related to COVID-19, our attorneys at Kitzer Rochel are here to help. We advocate on behalf of employees facing discrimination, retaliation, and whistleblower issues in the workplace.