Phil has been defending and advising employers for 20 years. He practices in both state and federal court, and before administrative agencies such as the California Labor Commissioner, U.S. Department of Labor, California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, and California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board, where he defends against a wide range of employment claims, including discrimination, harassment, retaliation, whistleblower retaliation, breach of contract and wrongful termination, as well as wage and hour claims for unpaid overtime, meal and rest break penalties, record keeping violations or other violations of state or federal labor law.
Phil also advises and guides employers through the minefield of state and federal labor and employment regulations, helping them achieve and maintain compliance through proper employee classification, compliance with state and federal leave laws, and accommodation of employee disabilities and religious practices.
In his spare time, Phil performs improv comedy at the L.A. Connection Comedy Theater in Burbank, and trains in martial arts and Chinese archery.
Phil represents and advises both private and public sector employers. Public sector clients include law enforcement, utility, and transportation agencies. Private sector clients range in size from small local businesses to nationwide companies, including hospitals, insurance companies, and hotel chains.
Phil developed an interest in labor and employment law in law school, and has been with BRGS for almost his entire legal career, joining the Firm in early 2000, shortly after he graduated from Loyola Law School. Prior to law school, Phil spent 13 years freelancing in the film and television industry as an editor, researcher and producer, primarily on historical drama and documentary series.
Recent positive outcomes for clients include:
- Jury verdict in favor of City of Los Angeles in Fair Employment and Housing Act lawsuit by former LAPD detectives alleging retaliatory reassignment after complaints of race discrimination;
- Negotiated $3,000 settlement for construction company appealing Labor Commissioner award of over $11,000 in penalties;
- Negotiated $8,500 settlement of maintenance worker’s claims against apartment owner for over $43,000 in alleged unpaid overtime and meal and rest break premiums, liquidated damages and waiting time penalties;
- Summary judgment for a municipality against a police officer’s claim of retaliation for assisting with another officer’s discrimination lawsuit;
- Dismissal of False Claims Act and Fair Employment and Housing Act claims by psychiatrist claiming non-renewal of hospital contract based on her age and alleged opposition to fraudulent Medicare billing practices;
- Permanent injunctions against terminated employee and the spouse of another terminated employee who threatened former supervisors, their family members and co-workers;
- Dismissal of wage claim by employee of unlicensed contractor who claimed he was employed by client homeowner;
- Early dismissal of former deputy chief’s retaliation and defamation claims against police department via successful “anti-SLAPP” motion;
- Dismissal of administrative complaint of race discrimination by janitorial worker terminated for collecting recyclables for personal profit on company time
- Negotiated ($2,000) settlement of race discrimination/wrongful termination lawsuit against luxury hotel/resort by former massage therapist terminated for interpersonal conflicts with co-workers;
- Negotiated settlement of race discrimination/wrongful termination lawsuit against luxury hotel/resort by former massage therapist terminated for interpersonal conflicts with co-workers; and
- Negotiated dismissal of LAPD detective’s claim of failure to reinstate him to the same position after an extended military leave.
Admitted to Practice
United States District Courts
- Central District of California
- Northern District of California
- B.A., University of Southern California
- J.D., Loyola Law School, Los Angeles
- Los Angeles County Bar Association, Employment Law Section
- Association of Southern California Defense Counsel (“ASCDC”)