Royal, P.C. is a boutique, woman-owned law firm that only represents companies. Our specialty is management-side labor and employment law. Our labor and employment law practice can be divided into three main categories: employment litigation; labor relations; and preventive services for litigation avoidance. In addition to our labor and employment practice, we defend companies in a multitude of litigation cases and provide counsel on a number of corporate transactional matters.
The Royal law firm is certified as a woman/minority business vendor with the United States Federal Contracting Program, the Massachusetts Supplier Diversity Office, the Women’s Business Enterprise Council, and the National Association of Minority and Women Owned Law Firms (NAMWOLF). Serving the New England states, our offices are centrally located in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Vermont.
We represent a wide range of businesses, including various Fortune 500 companies. We take great pride in representing and forming business relationships with local businesses in Western Massachusetts. Through this representation, Royal attorneys have received local, regional, and national recognition for their leadership and professional excellence in the areas of labor and employment law.
In a nutshell, Royal has:
- Big city law firm trained lawyers who provide advocacy with the efficiency, responsiveness, and personalization of a smaller, boutique law firm.
- A successful track record of representing employers in all types of employment litigation in state and federal courts throughout New England.
- Extensive experience practicing before various state and federal agencies that oversee the workplace, particularly the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, the Vermont Human Rights Commission, the Rhode Island Commission for Human Rights, and the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission as well as the National Labor Relations Board.
- Proficiency in guiding our unionized clients through a myriad of union grievances, matters involving contract interpretation and employee discipline or discharge, labor negotiations and collective bargaining, and union organizing and NLRB elections.
- Skill in developing alternative dispute resolution strategies during mediation and arbitration.
- Experience in developing pro-active training sessions for management and implementing other preventive measures and best practices to minimize legal exposure.
We have comprehensive experience handling all stages of litigation from inception through appeal. Indeed, our employment litigation experience includes managing all aspects of fact investigation, pleadings, non-expert and expert discovery, motion practice, including successfully drafting and arguing dispositive motions, settlement, pretrial, trial through verdict, and appellate work.
Our experience includes representing employers in the following claims:
- Individual and class actions arising under the Fair Labor Standards Act
- Title VII
- Americans with Disabilities Act
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act
- Sexual and other unlawful harassment
- Family and Medical Leave Act
- State employment discrimination laws
- Wrongful termination
- Intentional interference
- Restrictive covenant enforcement.
Royal has an extensive record of solely representing management in the area of labor relations before state and federal courts and administrative agencies by guiding our unionized clients with union grievances, by advising clients during mediations and arbitration actions, and by leading clients through labor negotiations and collective bargaining as well as union organizing and NLRB elections. In addition, Royal advises non-union clients on developing best practices for maintaining a union free workplace.
Preventive Services for Litigation Avoidance:
Advice on local laws
Many New England states, especially Massachusetts and Connecticut, have quirky state and local laws and ordinances that bear on the employment relationship. Royal attorneys regularly help our national employers in understanding and navigating these unique laws, providing recommendations on implementing the requirements under them. For example, Massachusetts has a number of unusual leave-related laws, such as paid sick leave, domestic violence leave, parental leave, and small necessities leave. Massachusetts also recently enacted the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which creates atypical obligations for Massachusetts employers. In addition, Massachusetts has several pieces of legislation that have gained momentum relating to paid family and medical leave. Likewise, Connecticut has a number of distinct state-specific laws affecting employment, such as the “ban the box” law, paid sick leave, and family and medical leave. We assist employers in not only complying with these state-specific laws, but also in helping them align the requirements of such laws with company-wide, national policies.
Seminars and training programs
We offer a variety of training programs for supervisory and management personnel from standard sessions in topics such as anti-harassment and anti-discrimination and effective discipline and documentation to more specialized workshops and programs. For example, we put together and conducted a tailored training session for senior leadership at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. in Bentonville, Arkansas last fall that addressed the legal implications of managing workplace appearance and dress.
We also have trained company leadership, including in-house counsel departments, in the following areas:
- What to expect at the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, as this particular state agency differs significantly from other state anti-discrimination enforcement agencies
- Creating an inclusive work environment
- Implementing various state-specific laws, such as the Massachusetts Pregnant Workers Act; Connecticut and Massachusetts paid sick leave; Connecticut family and medical leave; Massachusetts parental leave; Massachusetts domestic violence leave; and wage and hour laws in the New England states.
- Discrimination laws based on transgender status or gender identity.
In addition, we have created a workshop series for supervisors, which covers the trickiest aspects of the state-specific laws they encounter and must deal with daily. Through these hands-on programs, we provide supervisors with the right tools for making the right decisions under certain state laws. Recent topics include what a supervisor can do and say regarding a request for paid sick time or domestic leave and how to identify and handle a request for a workplace accommodation.
- Corporate Law
Royal attorneys have significant experience in the preparation, review, and analysis of a multitude of commercial and corporate contracts. Our contract review and drafting includes the analysis of all terms, clauses, conditions, stipulations, obligations, and liabilities to determine any pitfalls or issues, outlining and negotiating them for our clients. We carefully analyze every word choice and contingency within an eye to practicality as well as to the forum state’s controlling law to make sure the contract does not contain any problematic language or unintended consequence or result. We propose and negotiate revisions where appropriate and help our clients reach sensible results.
Royal attorney’s contract law experience includes the preparation and review of comprehensive contracts involving vendors, business partners, and employment relationships. We have prepared a multitude of service agreements, branding agreements, licensing agreements, hosting agreements, affinity agreements, and collaborative agreements. In performing such work for our clients, we have crafted detailed statements of the work and services to be performed therein. We have also advised on and negotiated issues related to contract renewals and the termination of contracts. Specifically, Royal attorneys have prepared hosting agreements and complex agreements related to the maintenance of medical records and electronic billing, which included the parameters and precautions involved with data backup and confidentiality concerns for large health care and information technology organizations. Royal has prepared affinity agreements between banking associations and financial services institutions and higher education. Royal has also prepared important collaborative, partnership, and branding agreements on behalf of a Fortune 500 Company, including the launch of a new business line for them. One of our attorneys is a tenured law professor who has been instructing lawyers on how to prepare concise and comprehensive agreements over the last four decades in both the J.D. and L.L.M. programs. Business and educational organizations have engaged our attorneys to present seminars to other attorneys on topics such as Drafting Contracts, Representations and Warranties, Indemnification Provisions, Non-Competes, Drafting in Anticipation of Future Litigation, and Contract Ethics.
- Litigation/Trial Law
Royal attorneys have substantial litigation experience. Our attorneys have litigated a myriad of employment law matters in both state and federal court and before administrative agencies. For example, all of our attorneys regularly appear before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and have prepared innumerable position statements, responses to requests for information, and responses to other discovery requests. At the administrative agency level, we have represented clients through all phases of the administrative process and, in doing so, have handled countless investigative and conciliation (mediation) conferences, public hearings, and appeal hearings.
- Special Services for our Business Clients
- Estate Planning
- Business Success Planning
- Estate Litigation
- High Net Worth/Commercial divorces