Holly L. Sutton

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Holly L. Sutton is a partner in Farella Braun + Martel's Employment practice.

Ms. Sutton counsels clients on the design and implementation of sound business policies – from hire to fire – to reduce the threat of employment litigation. She advises her clients on effectively managing the critical employment matters they face, with an eye toward practical solutions and risk management.  Her advice includes personnel policies, wage and hour laws, EEO compliance, hiring and termination practices, harassment and discrimination investigations, non-competition clauses, conflict of interest, and trade secret matters.

By developing creative and innovative strategies, Ms. Sutton guides her clients through the challenges of high risk situations, including reductions in force.  She provides carefully tailored advice, focusing on the specific and unique facts in each situation, and partners with her clients to develop strategies that best protect against claims and related disruptions.

Representing employers throughout the Bay Area and nationally, Ms. Sutton also assists clients with wrongful termination and employment discrimination actions, including claims for race, age, sex, disability and pregnancy discrimination, in state and federal courts and administrative forums.  Her practice has included single plaintiff, multi-plaintiff and class action matters.  She has also successfully litigated cases involving trade secrets, accommodation and employee solicitation issues.   Ms. Sutton has extensive experience in all facets of contractual arbitration.  In addition, Ms. Sutton has defended government investigations, resulting in dismissal of claims. 

Ms. Sutton’s clients include companies in the media, insurance, wine, agriculture, technology, retail, banking, construction, manufacturing, cannabis, and professional services industries.

Ms. Sutton regularly authors client alerts to keep employers apprised of legal developments in California and on the national level. She is frequently tapped to present local and national  seminars to employers and professional organizations on various employment topics, with a special emphasis on preventing and investigating claims of sexual and other harassment in the workplace, and effective management skills). Ms. Sutton has been quoted in numerous media outlets, including most recently KTVU Channel 2KNBR, and The Recorder, and has published articles on numerous topics, including arbitration and family and pregnancy leave laws.  She authored the chapter “Monitoring Key Issues Impacting Today’s Employment Agreements” in Negotiating and Drafting Employment Agreements (2012 ed.) by Aspatore. Ms. Sutton is recognized as a Labor & Employment Star – West by Benchmark Litigation (2019).