Pavneet Singh Uppal
Pavneet Singh Uppal is the regional managing partner of the Firm’s Phoenix office. Pavneet has litigated in state and federal courts in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Illinois. He regularly represents national, regional, and local clients in a variety of complex civil litigation matters. As lead trial counsel, Pavneet has litigated employment cases, including class actions, in federal and state trial and appellate courts, at arbitration and before administrative agencies.
Pavneet focuses his practice on labor and employment disputes with an emphasis on unfair competition, trade secrets, wrongful discharge and equal employment opportunity litigation and arbitration. His practice also encompasses litigation and counseling relating to Title VII, ADEA, ACRA, ADA, FMLA, ERISA and other federal and state employment laws.
Pavneet has extensive experience with state and federal litigation concerning enforcement of trade secrets and covenants not to compete, and regularly represents national clients in such matters. He also defends management in lawsuits alleging violations of employment discrimination statutes, employment contracts, leaves of absence, wage and hour compliance, whistleblower claims, safety (OHSA) and common law rights.
Pavneet counsels employers on preventing discrimination and harassment in the workplace and provides training and counseling for management with respect to federal and state employment laws and regulations.
Pavneet advises both buyers and sellers on labor, employment, and employee benefits issues that arise in mergers, acquisitions, and downsizings.
He has extensive experience designing and implementing alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.
- Obtained a temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction, and permanent injunction on behalf of a national bank against a former contractor who misappropriated computer source code, refused to return the bank’s computer and threatened to sell trade secret and confidential information.
- Represented national bank and obtained an appellate ruling which upheld the client’s language policy as a “limited, reasonable and business-related English-only rule.” Appellate court further opined that the client’s enforcement of its language policy was not racially discriminatory.
- Obtained Ninth Circuit appellate ruling affirming summary judgment in favor of a national bank client in an ERISA lawsuit alleging failure to pay pension benefits and breach of fiduciary duty.
- Represented a national professional employer organization in an FLSA collective/class action asserting nonpayment of overtime wages. Through aggressive litigation the client was able to settle the case on highly favorable terms and obtain a full release of all claims against the PEO and its employees, agents, affiliates, successors, etc. Settlement was approved by the federal court.
- Obtained a $1 million dollar settlement in an arbitration involving claims of fiduciary breach and self-dealing.
- Obtained judgment in favor of one of the nation’s largest community college districts in a special action brought by a former employee who claimed that his due process rights were violated in conjunction with his separation from employment.
- Obtained summary judgment in favor of the City of Phoenix against a former police officer who alleged failure to accommodate and discrimination on the basis of his disability.
- Represented one of the largest bulk carriers in North America and obtained complete summary judgment in favor of the client and recovered attorneys’ fees in federal lawsuit alleging wrongful termination in violation of public policy and breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing.
- Represented a global advanced materials company and obtained complete summary judgment on all claims in federal lawsuit alleging: 1) race discrimination; 2) sex discrimination; 3) wrongful termination in violation of the public policy against assault and battery; 4) hostile work environment; and 5) retaliation. Court dismissed plaintiff’s complaint and entered an order awarding fees against the plaintiff.
- Obtained full summary judgment in a lawsuit alleging interference with plaintiff’s FMLA rights and retaliation in violation of the FMLA.
- Represented client in a lawsuit alleging employment discrimination in violation of Title VII and § 1983 on the basis of plaintiff’s national origin (Mexican American) and race (Hispanic). After filing a motion for summary judgment, plaintiff was forced to withdraw all claims and dismiss the lawsuit with prejudice.
- Represented an international commercial real estate broker and successfully forced a former partner to tender his entire partnership interest to the client in a dispute involving allegations of fraud, intentional misrepresentation and misappropriation of corporate assets by a former partner.
- Successfully obtained numerous no cause findings before administrative agencies.
Honors & Leadership
Honors & Awards
- AV rated by Martindale Hubbell Peer Review
- Chosen in 2014 by Arizona Business Magazine as the top legal specialist in the area of trade secrets and unfair competition
- Fellow Litigation Counsel of America
- Same-Sex Marriage Ruling Could End Domestic Partner Benefits, Launch New Workplace Discrimination Fights6.26.15
- Veteran Labor and Employment Attorneys Join Firm In Its 22nd Office1.11.10
Seminars & Speaking Engagements
- Employee Document Essentials – What to Keep, What to Trash and What Could Land Your Business in the Courtroom9.23.14
- Employee Complaints: How to Conduct Effective Internal Investigations Without Triggering Retaliation Claims – Phoenix, AZ4.26.12
- University of Texas School of LawJ.D. 1993 with honors
- University of TexasB.A. 1989 with honors
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona
- Arizona Supreme Court
- Arizona Court of Appeals