Benjamin Kim - Labor and Employment/OSHA attorney - Nixon Peabody LLP

Benjamin J. Kim

Benjamin Kim is a partner and the deputy practice group leader in Nixon Peabody’s Labor & Employment group and chairs the firm’s Occupational Safety & Health (OSHA) practice. He represents clients in a range of industries in employment and labor matters in both federal and state court litigation. He also counsels employers on a wide variety of employment issues.

What do you focus on?

I focus my practice in the following areas:

Occupational Safety and Health

I regularly represent clients in complying with federal and state workplace safety and health laws and during government safety inspections of the workplace as well as investigations of workplace accidents, particularly those involving fatalities and serious injuries. I represent and defend clients in pursuing appeals of citations and other enforcement actions by government agencies such as the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health and the U.S. Department of Labor (including the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Mine Safety and Health Administration).

Employment Litigation

By devising creative legal strategies designed to add value in litigation, I strive to achieve results efficiently. My work involves representing and defending clients in employment-related litigation, including cases alleging wage-and-hour violations, discrimination, wrongful termination, workplace harassment, disability accommodation, and retaliation. I have defended employers in class-actions, representative actions and lawsuits filed by single and multiple plaintiffs in both California state and federal courts. I also have represented employers in investigations and other actions by government agencies such as the California Department of Industrial Relations (including the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement), the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the U.S. Department of Labor. By devising creative legal strategies designed to add value in litigation, I strive to achieve results efficiently.

Advice and Counseling

I counsel and represent companies and nonprofit organizations in actions and investigations brought by various state and federal agencies. I provide advice on various labor and employment issues as well as personalized training for employers on a variety of topics, such as sexual harassment prevention, workplace safety and health issues, and wage and hour compliance.

Esports Initiative

Our esports team focuses on finding innovative solutions to the growing needs of clients involved in highly competitive video gaming that, with its explosive growth and cross-industry reach, present new and complicated legal challenges. We have dozens of attorneys from multiple offices and practice areas working with esports clients in a variety of areas such as merchandising and manufacturing agreements, employment and the use of independent contractors, compliance with gambling and other regulatory compliance and IP licensing issues. For more information, visit the firm’s Esports page.

What do you see on the horizon?

A worldwide pandemic has not only changed the way we approach safety and health in the workplace, but it also has accelerated the changes to our “workplace.”  Now, more than ever, employers have invested in advancements in technology and communication, and this will continue to change the way people relate to, and work with, one another. Whether dealing with workplace safety and health, investigating an alleged sexual harassment complaint, or litigating a wage and hour class action, we need to continue to look for ways to solve client problems, acknowledging how such changes have affected the way people approach their jobs and their workplace.


  • “The most pressing legal issues in esports,” Esports Insider, June 2019
  • Dealing with Ebola—and Ebola-Related Fears—in the Workplace,” Occupational Health & Safety, October 23, 2014
  • “Filmmakers Must Mind Workplace Safety, Too,” Daily Journal, October 3, 2014
  • “California Employers Should Sweat Over Cooldown Breaks,” Law360, August 8, 2014
  • “The Heat Is On for California Employers,” Law360, January 23, 2014
  • “California Employers Should Prepare for Increased Enforcement of, and Litigation Over, New OSHA Standards Regarding Serious Violations,” CA Employer, December 2010


  • “OSHA’s Pandemic Endgame: Vaccine Mandates and Enforcing COVID-19 Safety Protocols under the General Duty Clause,” 2022 Occupational Safety and Health Law Committee Midwinter Meeting, Sarasota, FL, March 10, 2022
  • “Keeping Employees Safe: Testing, Vaccinations and Related Issues during the Pandemic,” 15th Annual ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law Conference, Los Angeles, CA, November 11, 2021
  • What to Expect from Cal/OSHA in 2020: Enforcement Trends, Regulatory Developments, and How to Close Your Compliance Gaps,” BLR®—Business & Legal Resources webinar, December 17, 2019
  • “Important Cal/OSHA Updates for 2019: The Practical Impact on Your Policies and Procedures,” BLR®—Business & Legal Resources webinar, December 13, 2018

Inside 'contract hell': Esports players say predatory contracts run rampant

The Washington Post | March 03, 2022

This article discussing contract-related issues in the esports industry, including contracts with players who are minors, restrictive time pressures to review contracts, and language barriers, quotes Los Angeles partner Benjamin Kim, Labor & Employment deputy practice group leader and OSHA practice chair, on why it’s important for companies to establish clear policies and comply with applicable laws.

Is COVID a "grave danger"? If not Biden rule may fall flat

Law360 | November 19, 2021

This article, focusing on the possible challenges to the “grave danger” argument in the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s emergency temporary standard, quotes Labor & Employment deputy practice group leader, OSHA practice chair and Los Angeles partner Benjamin Kim on what constitutes a grave danger, while he notes there will likely be continued legal scrutiny and discussion.

Pandemic and heat create workplace risks

HR Magazine | August 02, 2021

This article, covering potential heat illness risks in the workplace, quotes Labor & Employment deputy practice group leader and Los Angeles partner Ben Kim on the different factors employers should consider when creating heat illness prevention plans and the proactive steps they should take to avoid heat stroke or heat exhaustion in the first place.

Law360 names attorneys who moved up the firm ranks in Q1

Law360 | May 07, 2021

This roundup article of notable Q1 partner-level promotions includes Steve Zubiago’s election to CEO and managing partner; Long Island partner Tara Daub’s and Los Angeles partner Ben Kim’s promotions to Labor & Employment practice group leader and deputy PGL, respectively; and the attorneys from this year’s new partner class.

Employers face new risks as business travel returns

Law360 | March 16, 2021

This article on the risks employers face as business travel returns quotes Labor & Employment deputy practice group leader and OSHA practice chair Ben Kim, of Los Angeles, and San Francisco Labor & Employment partner Rachel Conn on the realities of a shifting office environment.

CDC vaccine guidance offers ‘road map’ for employers

Law360 | March 10, 2021

Labor & Employment deputy practice group leader and OSHA practice chair Ben Kim, of Los Angeles, and San Francisco Labor & Employment partner Rachel Conn provide commentary in this article analyzing the CDC’s new post-vaccination guidance, discussing implications for employers.

Wake Up Call

Bloomberg Law | February 19, 2021

Long Island partner Tara Daub and Los Angeles partner Ben Kim were included in this daily column of notable legal news for their promotions to Labor & Employment Practice Group Leader and Deputy PGL, respectively.

Employer Object To Cal/OSHA Virus Reporting Split From Federal OSHA

Inside OSHA | July 28, 2020

This article, discussing employer objections to the differences between Cal/OSHA and the federal OSHA requirements to record and report COVID-19 cases, quotes an NP alert providing guidance for California employers on the differences. The alert was authored by Occupational Safety & Health (OSHA) practice co-chair and Los Angeles Labor & Employment partner Ben Kim and San Francisco Labor & Employment associate Maritza Martin.

Coronavirus putting crimp on firms doing business in China

Rochester Business Journal | February 21, 2020

Rochester Corporate partner Jeremy Wolk authored this column about how employers with business operations in China are responding to the coronavirus outbreak and related travel restrictions. The article is based on an alert by Hong Kong Corporate partner David Cheng, Los Angeles Labor and Employment partner Benjamin Kim, San Francisco Labor and Employment senior counsel Jeffrey Tanenbaum and associate Rachel Conn, and Director of Global Strategies David Kaufman

California nears enactment of nation’s first workplace violence prevention regulation for general industry

Recorder ( | September 17, 2019

Los Angeles partner Ben Kim and San Francisco associate Rachel Conn, both of the Labor and Employment practice group, co-wrote this contributed article analyzing California’s latest effort to prevent workplace violence through regulations.

E-sports practices get boost with teen's Fortnite win

LegalTech News ( | August 05, 2019

This article highlights Los Angeles Labor and Employment partner Ben Kim and associate Irene Scholl-Tatevosyan for leading the e-sports practice at Nixon Peabody, one of only a few such practices at large law firms.

Storms on the horizon after high court’s Dynamex ruling

Los Angeles Daily Journal | July 10, 2019

Partner Ben Kim, counsel Alicia Anderson and associate Irene Scholl-Tatevosyan, all of the Labor and Employment group in Los Angeles, co-wrote this contributed article. The authors analyze the impact of a California Supreme Court ruling that drivers for Dynamex, a package delivery company, are employees rather than independent contractors.


Benjamin J. Kim

Deputy Practice Group Leader, Labor & Employment
Chair, Occupational Safety & Health (OSHA)

Los Angeles

Phone: 213-629-6090

Fax: 866-947-0849

University of Arizona, B.A., summa cum laude

University of California, Berkeley School of Law, Boalt Hall, J.D.


U.S. District Court, Central District of California

U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California

U.S. District Court, Northern District of California

U.S. District Court, Southern District of California

Benjamin has been recognized as “Up & Coming” in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business 2022 for Occupational Safety and Health (Nationwide).

  • American, Korean American, Los Angeles County, and National Asian Pacific American bar associations
  • Asian Americans Advancing Justice—Orange County
  • Asian Rehabilitation Service, Inc.
  • Berkeley Korean-American Alumni Association
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