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Jeffrey A. Dretler

Partner, Boston
t: 617.722.0044
f: 617.532.5899


Jeff Dretler is a partner in the firm’s Boston office. He has more than twenty years of experience litigating employment disputes at the trial and appellate levels of state and federal courts as well as at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD).

Jeff’s practice focuses on defending mid-size and large employers in single and multi-plaintiff cases alleging discrimination, harassment, retaliation, whistleblower and wage and hour claims. Jeff also devotes a significant amount of his practice to the prosecution and defense of trade secret and noncompetition cases.

In addition to his litigation practice, Jeff regularly counsels employers on compliance with a myriad of federal and state laws such as the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Massachusetts Payment of Wages Statute and the Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law. Jeff also drafts company handbooks, policies and employment agreements. As part of his compliance work, Jeff conducts sexual harassment prevention and other manager and employee training.

Jeff’s clients spans across a range of industries including healthcare, transportation, technology, manufacturing, retail and professional services.



  • Secured preliminary injunction on behalf of a national hygiene products company precluding its former employee from soliciting our client’s customers.
  • Won summary judgment on behalf of a hospital and two supervisors where plaintiff R.N.’s had alleged that their terminations from employment for falsification of patient records was motivated by personal animus and constituted defamation and other torts.
  • Obtained complete dismissal of whistleblower claim brought against public transportation authority by former engineering department head who alleged that his layoff was wrongfully motivated by retaliation for his having exposed fraud, corruption and safety issues.
  • Successfully argued appeal resulting in Massachusetts Appeals Court decision holding that hospital CEO’s comments to the Boston Globe concerning the terminations of nurses was protected petitioning activity under the anti-SLAPP statute.

Reported Cases

  • Blanchard v. Steward Carney Hospital, Inc., 89 Mass. App. Ct. 97 (2016)
  • Chacon v. Brigham and Women’s Hospital, 99 F. Supp. 3d 207 (D. Mass. 2015)
  • Craig v. Merrimack Valley Hospital, 45 F. Supp. 3d 137 (D. Mass. 2014)
  • Pearson v. Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, 723 F.3d 36 (1st Cir. 2013)
  • Delva v. Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Inc., 72 Mass. App. Ct. 766 (2008)

Honors & Leadership

Honors & Awards

  • Listed, Massachusetts Super Lawyers, Employment Litigation Defense - (2013-2017)
  • Listed, Super Lawyers, Top 100 Lawyers in Massachusetts - (2015)
  • Fellow, The College of Labor and Employment Lawyers
  • Selected to The Best Lawyers in America  (2018 - 2019)

Professional Activities

  • American Bar Association, Section of Labor and Employment Law
    • Employer Vice-Chair, Marketing Committee
    • Employer Co-Chair, Employment At Will Subcommittee, Employment Rights and Responsibilities (ERR) Committee
  • Member, Boston Bar Association
  • Member, Northeastern University School of Law Alumni/ae Board



Seminars & Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, Fair Labor Standards Act Update, Paychex, North Reading, MA (May 2016)
  • Speaker, Off-Duty Conduct as Grounds for Employee Discipline or Termination, Massachusetts Assisted Living Facilities Association (Mass-ALFA) 2015 Conference & Tradeshow, October 29, 2015, Worcester MA
  • Speaker, Negotiating Physician Employment Contracts, Partners HealthCare System Clinical   Fellows Retreat (October 2013, 2014, invited 2016)


  • Co-Author, Drafting Employment Documents in Massachusetts, Chapter 1: Documenting the Hiring Process (MCLE1`)(2010 & Supp. 2013, 2015)
  • Author, You Can’t Fire Me For That – I Was Off-Duty!, Employers and The Law: 2013-14 Anthology of Best Articles (G. Siedel and J. Siedel, eds., Van Rye Publishing, LLC, 2014)
  • Author, Constructive Discharge – How Bad Does It Have To Get, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, Employment Rights and Responsibilities Committee Midwinter Meeting (March 2016)


Bar Admissions

Court Admissions

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