Tenacious. Focused. Strategic. These are the core qualities upon which Steve Jones has built his practice. Steve is a trusted advisor and trial advocate for employers of every size. He concentrates his practice in employment litigation, with a particular emphasis on complex class action lawsuits, discrimination/whistleblower claims, trade secret/non-competition litigation, sexual harassment suits, ERISA claims and FLSA collective actions. Steve has also developed successful preventative and training methodologies in EEO and wage-hour areas and conducted dozens of company-wide wage-hour audits focusing on exemption classifications and timekeeping practices.
Steve leads the firm’s Labor & Employment Class Action Team and has devised aggressive and creative strategies to defeat class and collective action certification in numerous cases across the country. Peer rated as a Rising Star, Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers Magazine, Steve has a proven track record of obtaining summary judgment and Rule 12(b)(6) dismissals of employment lawsuits—obtaining more than a dozen dismissals in the last two years alone.
Steve served for over a year on special assignment as in-house counsel to Eastman Kodak Company, where he was responsible for managing external counsel and counseling business units. This experience has proven invaluable in understanding the pressures and budgetary constraints placed on his in-house clients.
My mission, above all else, is to achieve my clients’ business objectives while pursuing excellence in the practice of law. I don’t just “represent” my clients, I partner with them. I believe clients are entitled to “no surprises.” Accordingly, I dedicate my practice to constant client contact, transparency and accountability.
I understand that the most efficient way to resolve litigation is not always the most obvious. It is critical from the outset, therefore, to develop a defense strategy that is carefully calibrated to achieve trial and/or settlement advantage while remaining attentive always to my clients’ overall business objectives. It’s the foundation of any successful defense and my personal promise to clients.
Steve currently serves as Corporate Secretary, Board of Directors for Volunteers of America, Western New York. In 2009, Mr. Jones was selected to the Rochester Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Award in recognition of his civic and professional achievement. He served for three years as President of the Board of Directors for Step by Step, a Rochester-based organization dedicated to assisting and rehabilitating incarcerated women. He also served as a coach and mentor to high school students in the Monroe County Law Explorers Program for over five years. He actively represents several community-based, nonprofit organizations on a pro bono basis.
Recent Representative Litigation
- Defending international food company in the first case ever filed under the whistleblower provisions of the Food Safety Modernization Act; motion to dismiss pending (2013).
- Obtained dismissal of alleged ERISA claims for retiree health benefits on behalf of major hospital system (2012).
- Representing national retail company in wage-hour class and collective action and defeated conditional FLSA certification for operations consisting of thousands of employees (2010-present).
- Obtained Rule 12(b)(6) dismissal of alleged USERRA retaliation claims on behalf of major research university (2013).
- Obtained affirmance of summary judgment dismissal from Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals on claims of retaliation under the False Claims Act (2013).
- Obtained summary judgment dismissal of age discrimination claims under the ADEA and NYHRL on behalf of international business services company (2013).
- Obtained Rule 12(b)(6) dismissal of complaint alleging nine common law causes of action with prejudice on behalf of national financial services company (2013).
- Obtained affirmance of summary judgment dismissal from Second Circuit Court of Appeals on claims of disability discrimination and FMLA interference and retaliation on behalf of international engineering company (2012).
- Obtained summary judgment dismissal of sexual harassment and retaliation claims under Title VII and NYHRL on behalf of international technology company (2012).
- Obtained affirmance of dismissal of FLSA claims in class and collective action against major Long Island hospital system from Second Circuit Court of Appeals (2013).
- Obtained summary judgment dismissal of race/national origin discrimination, hostile work environment, and retaliation claims on behalf of national retail company (2013).
- Representing international news media company in multiple actions for long term disability benefits claims under ERISA (2013).
- Represented IT communications company in non-competition, alleged trade secret litigation involving unified communications technologies utilized by the U.S. Department of defense and dissolved temporary restraining order (2011-12).
- Defended multinational engineering company in alleged exemption misclassification class action and twice defeated plaintiffs’ motion for conditional certification under the FLSA (2010).
- Negotiated dismissal of New York City-based hospital system from multi-defendant class action alleging meal period and off-the-clock claims under the FLSA and New York Labor Law (2010).
- Obtained dismissal on the pleadings of sexual harassment claims against multinational restaurant franchise under Title VII of the Civil Rights and New York Human Rights Law (2011).
- Defeated motion for preliminary injunction in breach of restrictive covenant, unfair competition, and trade secret litigation (2009).
- Defended Boston-based hospital system in class action alleging meal period and off-the-clock claims under the FLSA and Massachusetts Wage Act until successful settlement (2010).
- Obtained summary judgment dismissal of disability discrimination and failure to accommodate claims under the ADA, NY Human Rights Law, and FMLA (2011).
- Obtained summary judgment dismissal of racial discrimination, hostile work environment, and retaliation claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and NY Human Rights Law (2010).
- Obtained decision from Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirming summary judgment dismissal of racial discrimination, hostile work environment, and retaliation claims under federal and state law (2009).
- Defended multinational retailer in class action alleging misclassification of store managers under the FLSA and multiple state laws and negotiated settlement on terms favorable to the employer (2010).
- Defended national retailer in alleged misclassification of information technology and financial positions in class action under the FLSA and New York Labor Law and negotiated settlement on terms favorable to the employer (2009).
- Defended multinational technology company in alleged exemption misclassification class action under the FLSA and New York Labor Law and negotiated settlement on terms favorable to the employer (2009).