Sacks Tierney P.A.

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Helen R. Holden

Helen Holden has extensive employment law experience in assisting businesses of all sizes with both counseling and litigation involving a wide range of human resources and legal issues. She provides a practical approach to resolving workplace issues.

“Every business that has employees faces challenges with employment law. I am passionate about helping clients understand how successfully navigating the alphabet soup of federal and state employment law can positively impact their businesses. When disputes do arise, I’m able to advocate for the employer’s interests without losing sight of the big-picture issues.”

Helen is experienced in defending litigation and advising on compliance issues under a number of federal and state laws, including the following recent successful representations:

  • Successfully obtained dismissal with prejudice of a collective action filed by a group of employees for unpaid overtime under the Fair Labor Standard Act.

  • Efficiently completed a compliance audit relating to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) required by a client contract.

  • Advised multiple clients in connection with investigation of wage and hour issues by the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor.

  • Successfully obtained dismissal of discrimination charges at the agency level, including matters alleging sex discrimination, age discrimination, Equal Pay Act violations, disability discrimination, and pregnancy discrimination.

  • Successfully resolved litigation alleging violation of non-solicitation obligations of a former employee.

  • Successfully defended an LLC and its members in complex litigation seeking restraining orders alleging interference with employee restrictive covenants.

  • Obtained dismissal of a parent corporation from litigation alleging breach of employment contract and reverse national origin discrimination.

Helen is rated AV-Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell® and is a Best Lawyers in America® honoree. She writes and speaks regularly on a variety of employment law issues. She is Vice Chair of the Employment Practices and Workplace Liability Section of the Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel (FDCC), Program Vice Chair for the Defense Research Institute’s Employment and Labor Committee 2017 Seminar, and is a member of the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM).

Practice Areas

Employment Law

Business and Corporate Law

Appeals

Honors and Awards

The Best Lawyers in America, Employment Law, 2017

AV-Preeminent Rating, Martindale-Hubbell

“Arizona’s Top Lawyers,” AzBusiness Magazine: Employee Benefits & Insurance, 2014

Professional Activities

State Bar of Arizona: Civil Practice & Procedure Committee, 2010-2016; Labor and Employment Law Section; Appellate Practice Section

Defense Research Institute: Employment and Labor Law Committee (Steering Committee; Vice Chair, Publications Subcommittee; Vice Chair, Program Committee, 2017 Seminar)

Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel: Vice Chair, Employment Practices and Workplace Liability Section; Member, Appellate Law Section, Commercial Litigation Section, Law Practice Management Section, Trial Tactics and Procedures Section, Professional Women’s Forum

Claims & Litigation Management Alliance

Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program (EMCAP) Working Group

Law Clerk to Chief Judge Noel Fidel, Arizona Court of Appeals, 1990-1991

Court and Bar Admissions

State Bar of Arizona, 1990

U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, 1990

U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1994

Reported Cases

Grynberg v. Shaffer, 216 Ariz. 256, 165 P.3d 235 (App. 2007)

Sabelko v. City of Phoenix, 120 F.3d 161 (9th Cir. 1997)

Presentations

“Employment Law Update,” Associated Minority Contractors of America – Arizona, 2017

“Legalizing Marijuana: It’s on the Ballot, Now What?” Associated Minority Contractors of America – Arizona, 2016

“Employment Law Tapas: Wage & Hour Update,” Association of Corporate Counsel, 2016

Rainmaker Panel Member, Ladder Down, 2016

“Wage and Hour Update: An Insider Perspective from the Department of Labor” (moderator), Defense Research Institute (DRI) Employment and Labor Committee Seminar, 2016

“The Joy of Pregnancy: Pregnancy Discrimination” (podcast), West LegalEdcenter, 2015

“Recent Developments in Employee Handbooks” (moderator and presenter), Practical Law (Thomson Reuters), 2015

“The NLRB and Joint Employment” (webinar), C.O.R.E. Training, 2015 | See related article

“Family Leave: Law and Controversies in the U.S.,” The John F. Roatch and Linda Haskell Lectures, 2015

“Employee or Independent Contractor: Introducing the Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program,” Employment & Labor Law Section, State Bar of Arizona, 2014

“The Joys of Pregnancy from the Employer’s Perspective,” Arizona Chapter, Association of Corporate Counsel, 2014

“Employee or Independent Contractor: Introducing the Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program,” Arizona Chapter, Associated General Contractors, Employment Practices Committee, 2014

“Employee or Independent Contractor: Introducing the Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program,” Chandler Chamber of Commerce, Public Policy Committee, 2014

“Employee or Independent Contractor: Introducing the Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program,” Arizona Registrar of Contractors Industry Advisory Council, 2014

“Employee or Independent Contractor: Introducing the Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program,” Arizona Builders’ Alliance Lunch & Learn, 2014

“Employee or Independent Contractor: Introducing the Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program,” Labor and Employment Relations Association, Arizona Chapter, 2014

“Employee or Independent Contractor: Introducing the Employee Misclassification Compliance Assistance Program,” Association of Pool & Spa Professionals, Central and Southern Arizona Chapters; National Association of the Remodeling Industry, Greater Phoenix and Southern Arizona Chapters; Association of the Wall and Ceiling Contractors of Arizona; Arizona Concrete Promotion Council; Ceramic Tile and Stone Association of Arizona; Painting and Decorating Contractors of America, 2014

“Employee Mismanagement: As Seen on TV,” Construction Financial Management Association, June 2014

“ADA and FMLA: Confluence or Confounding? Continuing Challenges in Compliance” (co-presenter), Defense Research Institute (DRI) Employment and Labor Law Annual Seminar, May 2014

"Labor and Employment Basics for Construction Lawyers,” State Bar of Arizona, Construction Law Section, April 2013

“Speed Learning for HR Professionals,” Sacks Tierney Client Seminar, January 2013

Articles and Publications

Ban on Sexual Orientation Discrimination May Affect Arizona Employers,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, April 2017

“Employment and Immigration Considerations” (chapter co-author), Construction Law Practice Manual, 3rd Ed. 2016, State Bar of Arizona

Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave: New Arizona Statutes,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, December 2016

‘That Will Be $15 for Your Kids Meal’: Welcome to the New World of U.S. Department of Labor Regulations,” FDCC Insights, Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel, October 2016

New OSHA Rule May Impact Post-Accident Employee Drug Testing,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, September 2016

“Marijuana in Arizona: Impact of Legalization on Employers,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, September 2016

Arizona Attorney General Seeks to Restrict ADA Claims” (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, August 2016

Arizona’s Implied Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing May Apply to Workers in Multiple States” (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, August 2016

“Changes to Minimum Wage, Overtime Rules Pose New Threats to Employers,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, May 2016

Joint Employment: NLRB Ruling Poses New Risks for Employers,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, September 2015

Employee Misclassification and the ‘Economic Realities’ Test,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, September 2015

Accommodating Pregnant Employees,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, March 2015

NLRB Takes Aim at Employee Handbooks,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, March 2015

FMLA: Communicating with Employees on Leave,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, January 2015

Phoenix District Office of U.S. Department of Labor Offers Program to Self-Report Worker Misclassification,” The Job Description, Defense Research Institute Employment Law Committee, November 21, 2014

Businesses Have Plenty of Legal Hurdles to Clear Regarding Employees,” Phoenix Business Journal, November 21, 2014

Minimum Wage: Don’t Overlook Arizona’s Higher Requirement,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, November 2014

Arizona Same-Sex Marriage Triggers FMLA Eligibility,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, October 2014

U.S. Department of Labor Offers Incentives to Self-Report Worker Misclassification,” August 2014

Arizona Anti-Deficiency Protection Is Not Available for Vacant Land,” January 2014

"Misclassifying Employees as ’Owners’: Resist the Temptation,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, December 2013

"Restrictive Covenants in Employment Agreement Found to Be Too Broad,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, November 2013

"Employers, Large or Small: Obamacare Requires Action by October 1,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, September 2013

Borrowers Cannot Waive Fair Market Value Protections, Court Rules,” September 2013

"Analyzing Cross-Appeals in Federal Court“ (co-author), Certworthy, Defense Research Institute, July 2013

"Obamacare Update: Employer Mandate Pushed Back to 2015,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, July 2013

"Supreme Court Decides Cases in Favor of Employers,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, June 2013

"NLRB Poster Requirement Struck Down by D.C. Court,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, May 2013

"OSHA Clash with State Safety Regulators a Concern to Employers,” Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, April 2013

"Prepare Now for the Obamacare Employer Mandate: 2014 Liability to Be Based on 2013 Data“ (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, March 2013

"IRS Program Offers Employers a Break for Misclassifying Workers“ (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, October 2012

Signature Requirements in an Arizona Real Estate Commission Agreement“ (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, October 2012

"Confidentiality in Investigations: A Trap for Unwary Employers?“ (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, September 2012

"Unique Legal Issues Affect Employers on Arizona Indian Reservations“ (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, August 2012

Refinancing, Construction and Arizona’s Anti-Deficiency Laws” (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, May 2012

"Employee Voting Rights: Arizona Employer Obligations” (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, May 2012

"A Planning Resource for Your Arizona Employee Handbook” (co-editor)

"Court Suspends NLRB-Required Notice of Collective Bargaining Rights” (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, April 2012

"Social Networking and the Workplace” (co-author), Sacks Tierney Client Newsletter, April 2012

“Recent Employment Cases,” 6 Trial Practice 13 (Winter 1995)

“Arizona’s Fair Housing Act: Prohibitions Against Discrimination on the Basis of Handicap,” 5 Real Property Section Journal 12 (Summer 1994)

Comment, "Does the Legal System Batter Women? Vindicating Battered Women’s Constitutional Rights to Adequate Police Protection,” 21 Ariz. St. L.J. 705 (1989)

Community Leadership

Raising Special Kids: Secretary; Member, Board of Directors

Ivy Council of Phoenix: Member, Board of Directors; Member, Advisory Board

Temple Chai: Vice President; Member, Board of Directors

Beth El Congregation: Past President

Bryn Mawr Club of Greater Phoenix: President

Education

Arizona State University College of Law, J.D., 1990: Order of the Coif; Symposium Editor, Arizona State Law Journal, 1989-1990

Bryn Mawr College, A.B. with honors, 1983

Birthplace

Chicago, Illinois