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Lonnie D. Giamela

Partner, Los Angeles
Los Angeles
t: 213.330.4454
f: 213.330.4501
t: 949.798.2142
f: 949.851.0152


Lonnie Giamela is a partner in both the Los Angeles and Irvine offices. His practice is focused on being a “one-stop shop” for businesses of all sizes to address their labor and employment law needs.

Lonnie’s subject matter expertise ranges from fair employment matters to leave management, Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) litigation, wage and hour compliance, payroll tax audits, mass layoff strategy, management training and litigating matters before the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Lonnie has extensive experience representing local, regional and national clients in class action wage-hour lawsuits as well as representative lawsuits brought under California’s Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA).

Lonnie has handled matters before Superior Courts across California, the California Court of Appeal, the California Supreme Court, United States District Courts, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the NLRB, the Employment Development Department (EDD), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the United States Department of Labor (DOL) and the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE).

Utilizing experiences from his family's restaurants in the San Fernando Valley, Lonnie also provides preventive advice to the companies he represents. His prior business experience assists in finding practical, compliant legal solutions to clients’ everyday employee relations issues. The preventive advice ranges from single-issue analysis to broader matters including, but not limited to, overtime exemption audits under state and federal law.

Lonnie’s clients range from small businesses to national companies in all sectors of manufacturing, retail, wholesale distribution, hospitality, education and the automotive industries. He has assisted in the preparation of more than 500 handbooks for clients and has developed policies and procedures manuals for both small businesses and national companies with multi-state operations.

Lonnie has presented more than 250 seminars to management, executives, human resources professionals and employer groups on topics including fair employment, medical leaves, mass layoffs, FMLA/CFRA compliance, independent contractor classification matters, preparation of handbooks, emerging legal issues and wage and hour compliance.

Lonnie has an "AV" Peer Review Rating by Martindale-Hubbell, which is their highest peer review survey rating for legal abilities and ethical standards. He has been selected for inclusion in Southern California Super Lawyers – Rising Stars since 2013. He was also been named as one of the Top 100 Up and Coming lawyers in Southern California by Super Lawyers in 2015 and 2016. He was also selected as a Client Service All-Star for 2016, an elite group of attorneys nominated by in-house counsel for their outstanding client service. BTI Consulting Group conducted the survey.

Lonnie is frequently quoted on labor and employment issues and has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the Los Angeles Business Journal,,, PIHRAescope blog and Business Finance.



  • Full defense arbitration award in disability discrimination/unpaid wages suit brought against dealership.
  • Full defense arbitration award in single plaintiff disability discrimination suit brought against collision center.
  • Full defense arbitration award in sexual orientation discrimination and breach of contract case brought by a plaintiff seeking in excess of $10,000,000 in damages.
  • Full Defense Verdict in Dealership Breach of Contract Case
  • Successful defense of client at trial in case involving claims of retaliation, constructive discharge, failure to accommodate and failure to engage in the interactive process.
  • Obtained favorable decisions in California Court of Appeal and United States District Court matters involving the enforceability of pre-dispute arbitration agreements.
  • Handling of matters before National Labor Relations Board and 9th Circuit involving legality of class action waiver in pre-dispute arbitration agreements.
  • Representation of clients before governmental agencies including, but not limited to, California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement, California Employment Development Department and United States Department of Labor Wage-Hour and VETS division.
  • Representation of clients before superior court, California Courts of Appeal, California Supreme Court, various federal district courts and 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
  • Representation of clients in payroll tax audits conducted by California Employment Development Department.
  • Representation of clients in payroll audits conducted by City of San Francisco.

Reported Cases

  • Lucas v. Gund, Inc., 450 F. Supp. 2d. 1125 (C.D. Cal. 2006)

Honors & Leadership

Honors & Awards

  • Named “Client Service All-Star” by BTI Consulting Group - 2016
  • Named Up and Coming Top 100 Southern California Rising Stars by Los Angeles Magazine - (2015-2016)
  • Named Super Lawyer- Rising Star by Los Angeles Magazine - (2013 - 2016)
  • Rated AV by Martindale Hubbell

Professional Activities

  • Children’s Hospital of Orange County, Littlest Angel Guild
  • Member, Orange County Bar Association
  • Member, Los Angeles Bar Association
  • Member, Armenian Bar Association
  • Member, Burbank Chamber of Commerce

Community Activities

  • National Italian American Foundation
  • San Gennaro Foundation
  • Burbank Chamber of Commerce



Seminars & Speaking Engagements

  • “Minimizing Employment Law Liability”
    West Ventura County Employers’ Advisory Council 
    February 2016
  • “2016 Employment Law Update”
    San Fernando Valley Employers’ Advisory Council 
    February 2016
  • “An Ounce of Prevention Saves A Ton of Liability”
    PIHRA California Legislative Update
    January 2016
  • Express Employment Professionals Legislative and Caselaw Update
    January 2016
  • “Employees’ New Tactic to Challenge Arbitration Agreements – A Trip to the NLRB"
    December 2015
  • “How To Conduct A Proper Workplace Investigation” 
    October 2015
  • California Unemployment Insurance Council “A Primer on Medical Leave Laws” 
    September 2015
  • “A Class On How To Avoid Wage Hour Class Actions
    PIHRA California Legislative Update
    January 2015
  • "The Intersection of Social Networking And Employment Law"
    Orange County Private School Association  - Yorba Linda, CA 
    August 2012
  • "Top Ten Legal Landmines in Wage Hour Law and Medical Leaves"
    San Fernando Valley Employers Advisory Council - Van Nuys, CA 
    November 2011
  • "Handling Medical Leaves of Absence"
    California Unemployment Insurance Council - Long Beach, CA 
    May 2011
  • "Beyond the Basics in Employment Law"
    Sterling Education - Pasadena, CA 
    November 2012
  • "Drafting Employee Handbooks"
    PMAA - Los Angeles, CA 
    May 2010
  • "The Intersection Of Social Networking And Employment Law"
    Employer Advisory Council  of Ventura County - Oxnard, CA 
    April 2010
  • "Legislative Update"
    California Staffing Professionials Conference 
    City of Industry, CA 
    April 2010
  • "The Intersection Of Social Networking And Employment Law"
    PIHRA District 10 Ontario, CA 
    October 2009
  • "Quarterly Legislative Updates"
    Pacific Coast Association of Health Care Recruiters 
    2011 through 2012
  • "Annual Employment Law Update"
    PIHRA District 15
    2011 through 2012


Bar Admissions

Court Admissions


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