| "He's ingrained himself, he knows as much about our company as anybody and is a great asset." Benesch client, Chambers USA 2017|
W. Eric Baisden, Chair of Benesch’s Labor & Employment Practice Group, maintains a national labor and employment practice which includes representing employers in all areas of employment and labor relations, as well as related employment litigation, before federal and state administrative agencies and in trial and appellate courts in 45 states.
Eric is ranked in the 2013-18 editions of The Best Lawyers in America, the 2015-17 editions of Ohio Super Lawyers, as well as in the 2014-16 editions of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. In the latter, his clients enthuse: “Eric is one of the best attorneys I have ever worked with. He is a reliable business partner who is supportive yet appropriately challenging.” His other clients agree, noting that he “speaks with a thoughtful and clear viewpoint,” and “possesses excellent people skills.” In addition, Eric is AV® Preeminent™ Rated by Martindale Hubbell, its highest available rating for legal ability and professional ethics.
Eric has significant first chair experience in protecting employers from unfair competition, litigating the enforceability of restrictive covenants and confidentiality agreements, including obtaining and opposing TROs and preliminary injunctions. Eric has handled numerous cases under the FLSA and state wage and hour laws, including collective and hybrid class actions. Eric also litigates claims of wrongful discharge and discrimination, including ADA, age, race, pregnancy, gender and sexual harassment and intentional torts. He litigates cases under ERISA, including preemption, benefit denials, retaliation, and multiemployer pension fund issues, and claims to enforce or construe executive compensation and change of control agreements in connection with corporate mergers and acquisitions. His experience also includes legal proceedings regulating picketing and other organizational conduct of nonemployee union organizers and pickets and strike contingency planning, including TRO and preliminary injunction hearings regulating strike activities and striker misconduct.
Eric defends employers in administrative proceedings before the Department of Labor, including numerous wage and hour audits, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, including several fatal accident and egregious penalty cases. He represents employers before the National Labor Relations Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and state administrative agencies in connection with charges of discrimination. He also regularly represents employers in arbitration hearings dealing with contract interpretation issues, discipline, wrongful discharge and discrimination. Eric regularly counsels both union and nonunion employers on wage and hour compliance, representation elections, contract negotiations, third party avoidance, discipline, leaves and terminations. He advises clients on the implementation of personnel practices, including drafting and revising employee guides, applications, training materials, harassment policies, ADA compliance, drug testing policies and in house investigations of drug use, and large scale reductions in force. Additionally, Eric is experienced in training client personnel in the implementation and application of personnel policies, third party avoidance and internal investigations. He advises employers on employment eligibility and I9 compliance, counseling the company and providing training to the human resource professionals on best practices to ensure that the company complies with employment eligibility verification requirements while avoiding immigration discrimination violations. He also is experienced conducting I-9 self-audits and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) onsite audits.