Biography

As a member of Farella’s employment team, Ryan Wessels advises clients on employment matters to minimize legal risk, while also working to efficiently resolve employment disputes as they arise.

Ryan handles both single-plaintiff cases and larger class actions and defends small nonprofits, family-owned businesses, and global corporations. He has defended employers against discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims in state and federal court and before administrative agencies across the country. He has also resolved wage and hour disputes with the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE) and defended employers against wage and hour class actions involving meal and rest breaks and Equal Pay Act violations.

Regardless of the size or structure of his client’s business, Ryan’s goal is the same: effectively resolve disputes while taking his client’s needs into account. Clients value the way Ryan manages cases, commending him for his responsiveness, attention to detail, and efficiency. 

Ryan also guides clients to avoid unnecessary employment litigation. He counsels clients on all areas of the employment relationship, including hiring and termination decisions, disability accommodations, immigration law, and employee policies. Ryan works with clients to draft employment agreements, policies, and handbooks that comply with federal, state, and local laws and minimize the risk of litigation.

Outside of his employment law practice, Ryan has played a pivotal role in complex litigation teams, such as the class action UFCW & Employers Benefit Trust v. Sutter Health. Representing a certified class of California companies in an antitrust action against Sutter Health, Ryan prepared the case for trial by crafting trial narratives, overseeing discovery teams, and drafting direct and cross-examinations for key trial witnesses. Through this work, Ryan was instrumental in securing a $575 million settlement for the plaintiff class on the eve of trial.

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Member, Barrister’s Labor & Employment Law Section Executive Committee, Bar Association of San Francisco

Firm Highlights

Publication

California Employment Law Updates: What to Look Out for in 2024

Farella's 2024 Employment Law Symposium provided invaluable insights that will keep you and your talent team at the forefront of California employment law trends. The Symposium offered a unique chance to deepen your understanding of new...

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Publication

Navigating Cannabis in the Workplace: A Guide for California Corporations

The landscape surrounding cannabis in the workplace is rapidly evolving, posing challenges for California corporations and businesses to establish effective policies and procedures. As the use of cannabis, both medical and recreational, becomes more...

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Publication

Five New California Laws Employers Need to Know

California has become a trendsetter when it comes to implementing new laws. The state is often at the forefront of key issues and paves the way for other states to follow in its footsteps. This...

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Publication

Navigating California's Evolving Legal Landscape Governing Leaves of Absence

California’s employment laws are no stranger to change, and recent years have witnessed the introduction or modification of various protected leaves by employees. In this article, we will delve into three significant leave categories...

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Publication

Important Changes and the Impact of California Industry-Specific Minimum Wage Laws

In the ever-evolving landscape of California labor laws, the minimum wage has once again taken center stage. With the recent state-wide increase to $16 per hour, the Golden State continues to lead the nation...

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Publication

Employment Law Symposium Recordings & Articles

Employers Face Significant New Requirements for Severance Agreements and Non-Competes  (Recording) Conducting Effective, Defensible Investigations (With Lessons Learned from Summary Judgment & Trial)  (Recording) California Employment Law Updates: What to Look Out for in...

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