Justin M. Swartz Esq.

Justin M. Swartz Esq.

Partner
Location:
New York, New York
Phone:
(212) 245-1000
Fax:
(646) 509-2060
Email:

JUSTIN M. SWARTZ, a partner at Outten & Golden LLP in New York and Co-Chair of its Class Action Practice Group, represents employees in class action wage/hour and discrimination cases, as well as individual discrimination cases and other employment matters.  He is also Co-Chair of the firm’s Public Interest Committee.

Over the past ten years, Mr. Swartz has been lead counsel or co-lead counsel in dozens of unpaid wage theft class and collective actions on behalf of workers in a wide variety of industries.  He has represented thousands of workers in unpaid overtime lawsuits including assistant store managers at drugstores, restaurants (including Chipotle), and retail clothing chains, furniture salespeople, unpaid interns, “volunteers” who work for private companies (including Major League Baseball), dishwasher repair people, exterminators, delivery drivers, security guards, financial services employees, bank assistant branch managers, grocery store assistant managers and hourly workers, pet groomers, entry-level accounting employees, and adult entertainers, among others.  He is currently litigating cases challenging the practice of classifying workers as independent contractors and failing to pay overtime compensation.  He has also represented thousands of restaurant workers in overtime, minimum wage, and tip theft cases, including cases against TGI Friday’s and Applebees, as well as restaurants owned by Mario Batali, Bobby Flay, and other celebrity chefs.  Mr. Swartz and Outten & Golden LLP's Public Interest Committee have represented hundreds of low-wage workers in minimum wage and unpaid overtime cases, including construction workers, farm workers, and low-wage cleaning workers in their claims that large contractors failed to pay them overtime compensation for their work cleaning buildings around Ground Zero in 2001.

He has also represented workers in employment discrimination claims against companies that have refused to hire minorities with criminal records, systemic gender discrimination claims against a major utility company; and several individual race, gender identity, sexual orientation, and national origin discrimination cases.  He has represented hundreds of female and African American stock brokers in nationwide discrimination class action lawsuits against the country’s leading brokerage firms, including Merrill Lynch, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and Smith Barney.

Mr. Swartz is active in bar associations including the American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law where he is Co-Chair of the Section’s CLE/Institutes and Meetings Committee, Co-Chair of the Committee on Equal Employment Opportunity Law, and is a former Co-Chair of the Ethics and Professional Responsibility Committee.

Mr. Swartz frequently works with non-profit organizations on public interest matters including successfully representing a formerly incarcerated security guard in a licensing hearing in conjunction with MFY Legal Services and representing three low-wage immigrant women in sexual harassment, assault and battery, and overtime claims as co-counsel with the ACLU Women's Rights Project. He has co-counseled with, and performed pro bono services for, Make the Road New York, The Legal Aid Society, South Brooklyn Legal Services, Manhattan Legal Services, the New York Civil Liberties Union, Legal Momentum, NYLAG, the Sylvia Rivera Law Project, and MFY Legal Services as a volunteer attorney at its legal clinics. Mr. Swartz is also part of the Lambda Legal Cooperating Attorney Network. While living in Chicago, he volunteered at First Defense Legal Aid, providing emergency representation for recent arrestees and documenting police misconduct.

Mr. Swartz joined Outten & Golden LLP in December 2003 after representing workers as an associate at Goodman & Zuchlewski, LLP, in New York and Stowell & Friedman, Ltd., in Chicago.

He graduated from DePaul University School of Law with honors in 1998.

Areas of Practice

  • Employment Law
  • Employment Class Action
  • Labor & Employment Law - Plaintiff

Bar Admissions

  • New York, 2002
  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court Western District of New York
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois

Education

  • DePaul University College of Law, Chicago, Illinois - 1998
    • Honors: With Honors
  • University of Richmond
    • B.S. - 1994

Published Works

  • Retaliatory Counterclaims: Turning The Tables On The Overly Aggressive Defendent
  • Can Law Firm Partners Sue The Firm For Employment Discrimination?, Law Journal Newsletters' Law Firm Partnership & Benefits Report, 2004
  • Ethics Corner: Third Circuit Vindicates Plaintiff's Attorney, Ethics Corner, 2007
  • EEOC Committee Reviews Workplace Diversity Issues, Section of Labor & Employment Law, American Bar Association, Vol. 35, Number 4, 2007
  • The Epidemic Of Employer Misclassification Of Employees As Independent Contractors Under The Fair Labor Standards Act, And The Courts' Response, 2009
  • FLSA Collective Action Notice Issues, Section of Labor and Employment Law, American Bar Association,Volume 41, Number 2, 2013
  • Overtime Class of Duane Reade Assistant Store Managers Conditionally Certified, O&G Employment Law Blog, 2012
  • New York Attorney General Says Domino's Pizza Is "Joint Employer" in Wage Theft Scheme, O&G Employment Law Blog, 2016
  • Stalled Overtime Rules Will Hurt All U.S. Workers, Including Trump Voters, O&G Employment Law Blog, 2017
  • A Puzder-Led Labor Department Would Make Life Much Harder for U.S. Workers, O&G Employment Law Blog, 2017

Classes/Seminars

  • Speaker: "View from the Plaintiffs’ Bar: Adapting Your Defense Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques and Tactics", American Conference Institute, 26th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
  • Panelist: "Interactive “Ask the Plaintiff’s Bar", American Conference Institute'2 29th National Forum, Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions, Session: Adapt Your Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques Being Brought by Your Adversaries Specifically in the Wage Context
  • Panelist: "FLSA/Wage & Hour Issues in US Sport", Sports Lawyers Association, 2017 Annual Conference
  • Moderator: "Co-Counseling & Cooperating with Other Plantiffs' Lawyers (Or Playing Nice in The Sandbox)", NELA, 2016 Annual Convention
  • Panelist: "Interactive “Ask the Plaintiff ’s Bar” Session: Adapt Your Strategies to New and Innovatice Techniquest Beign Brought by Your Adversaries Specifically in the Wage Context", American Conference Institute, 28th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Action
  • Speaker: Current Issues in Settlement of FLSA Cases, New York City Bar Association
  • Speaker: View from the Plaintiffs' Bar: Adapting Your Defense Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques and Tactics, American Conference Institute's 23rd National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
  • Faculty: Wage-Hour Actions, Eighteenth Annual NYU Workshop on Employment Law for Federal Judges, NYU Labor & Employment Law, Institute of Judicial Administration, NYU University School of Law
  • Moderator: Vulnerable Workers Under the Microscope: Developments and Prospects, National Conference on Equal Employment Opportunity Law, ABA Section of Labor & Employment
  • Speaker: Views From The Plaintiff's Bar, ACI's 25th Wage & Hour Conference
  • Speaker: Interns and Volunteers as Employees?, NYU 68th Annual Conference on Labor
  • Panelist: Displaying Professionalism When Clients Allege Wrongdoing and Malpractice, ABA Section of Labor & Employment Law, 9th Annual Labor & Employment Law Conference
  • Speaker: View from the Plaintiffs' Bar: Adapting Your Defense Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques and Tactics, American Conference Institute's 26th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
  • Panelist: Views From The Plaintiffs' Bar: Adapting Your Defense Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques and Tactics, American Conference Institute's 20th Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions Conference
  • Facilitator: A Side Bar With the Judges on Rule 30(b)(6): Use, Abuse, and Process, National Conference on Equal Employment Opportunity Law
  • Panelist: Views From The Plaintiffs' Bar: Adapting Your Defense Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques and Tactics, American Conference Institute's 21st Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions Conference
  • Panelist FLSA Mediation Issues, JAMS Employment Law Practice Group Conference
  • Speaker: Defeating and Dealing with Arbitration Agreements in Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) Cases, American Association for Justice, Employment Rights Section and Wage & Hour Litigation Group
  • Speaker: Keeping the Heat On Employers in FLSA Cases, NELA 2014 Annual Convention: Blazing the Trail, Courage, Challenge, Change
  • Speaker View from the Plaintiffs' Bar: Adapting Your Defense Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques and Tactics, American Conference Institute's 21st Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions Conference
  • Moderator: Arbitration and Alternatives, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act After 50 Years, NYU 67th Annual Conference on Labor, New York University
  • Speaker: View from the Plaintiffs' Bar: Adapting Your Defense Strategies to New and Innovative Techniques and Tactics, American Conference Institute's 22nd National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
  • Moderator: Raising the Level of Ethics and Professionalism in the Labor and Employment Bar, ABA Section of Labor & Employment Law, 8th Annual Labor & Employment Conference
  • Panelist" Plaintiff's Perspective on Wage and Hour Litigation, How to Handle a Wage and Hour Case, New York County Lawyers' Association
  • Speaker: Attorney's Fees and Settlement of FLSA Actions, Bridgeport Continuing Legal Education
  • Speaker: Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions, ACI's 18th National Forum
  • Panelist: Class and Collective Action Certification and Related Discovery, Managing Wage & Hour Risks 2013, Practising Law Institute
  • Panelist: Attorney's Fees and Settlement of FLSA and Wage & Hour Actions, FLSA/Wage & Hour 2013 Litigation & Management
  • Panelist: Settling Wage-Hour Litigation (including Rule 68 Offers after Genesis Healthcare v. Symczyk), Litigation and Settlement of FLSA Claims, NYU Labor & Employment Law, NYU 66th Annual Conference on Labor
  • Faculty: Wage and Hour Practice Today: Policies and Litigation Strategies after Comcast, Genesis, and Espenschied, American Law Institute CLE audio/webcast
  • Panelist: Talk to Me: Communications with Potential Class Members Before and After Complaint Filing, 7th Annual ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law Conference

Honors and Awards

  • "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers® for: Litigation - Labor and Employment
  • Best Lawyers®, 2016 - 2019
  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers, 2013 - 2018
  • Rising Star, 2011 - 2012

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Association of the Bar of the City of New York-Committee on Civil Rights, Member, 2005 - 2008
  • Association of the Bar of the City of New York- Committee on Labor and Employment Law , Member, 2002 - 2005
  • Executive Board of the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) New York affiliate , Member
  • NELA National Wage and Hour Committee, Co-Chair
  • ABA Section on Labor and Employment Law, Member
  • ABA Section on Labor and Employment Law, Co-Chair, Ethics and Professional Responsibility Committee, 2005 - 2008
  • BNA/ABA LEL Section Treatise, The Fair Labor Standards Ac, Contributing Editor
  • BNA/ABA LEL Section Treatise, Employment Discrimination Law, Chapter Monitor
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Committee, Co-Chair, Conference Planning Committee, 2012 - Present
  • American Constitution Society, Member
  • Americans United for Separation of Church and State, Member

Past Employment Positions

  • Goodman & Zuchlewski, LLP, New York, Associate
  • Stowell & Friedman, Ltd., Chicago, Associate

Pro Bono Activities

  • Co-Counsel, ACLU Women's Rights Project
  • Co-Counsel, The Legal Aid Society
  • Co-Counsel, South Brooklyn Legal Services
  • Co-Counsel, Manhattan Legal Services
  • Co-Counsel, New York Civil Liberties Union
  • Co-Counsel, Legal Momentum
  • Co-Counsel, NYLAG
  • Co-Counsel, Sylvia Rivera Law Project
  • Volunteer Attorney, MFY Legal Services, Legal Clinics
  • Lambda Legal Cooperating Attorney Network
  • Volunteer, First Defense Legal Aid
  • American Constitution Society
  • Americans United for Separation of Church and State

Languages

  • English (Primary)