Protecting the Rights of Federal Employees in Los Angeles

It should hardly come as a surprise that Los Angeles is the second-largest city in the country. In addition, the region has countless federal employers, including the Department of Defense (DoD), the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), and the Department of Homeland Security. Consequently, we know there’s a tremendous need for quality federal employment attorneys.

At Pines Federal, we take great pride in confidently handling a variety of complex employment issues affecting federal employees.

We have successfully fought cases that resulted in overturned suspensions, mandated back pay, and reinstated employment.

Trust our decades of experience for your federal employment case, such as:

Defending You Against Adverse Actions

No one ever imagines they’ll receive disciplinary or adverse action. Thus, people are often surprised when it happens. Although you might feel the temptation to give in or go along with your employer, you should quickly understand your rights and protect them. 

Our Los Angeles federal employment law firm has decades of experience defending employees against unfair and illegitimate adverse actions. 

Each one of our federal employment attorneys has experience helping Los Angeles federal employees with all kinds of charges, including:

We also have experience with performance-based adverse actions and Performance Improvement Plans (PIPs). Because these actions involve a different set of federal rules than traditional adverse actions, it’s essential you consult with an attorney who is familiar with this area of law.

VA Federal Employees

Veterans Affairs employees fall within unique laws and policies of the federal government. Title 5 employees include any non-medical personnel while Title 38 employees include medical personnel such as doctors and nurses. In addition to these two employment categories, some jobs are considered a Title 38 Hybrid. These positions include physical therapist, pharmacist, and licensed practical/vocational nurse. Hybrids are covered by Title 38 for appointment, advancement, and certain pay matters, and Title 5 for performance appraisal, hours of duty, adverse actions, reemployment rights, and reduction-in-force, among others.

The laws governing VA employees are the same as other federal employees in some areas but are different in others and can be particular to the VA employee type. At Pines Federal, we have a discerning and deep understanding of the rights and responsibilities of VA employees.

Our experience can help you with:

  • Administrative Investigations Board,
  • Disciplinary Appeals Board,
  • Professional Standards Board,
  • Equal Employment Opportunity cases, and
  • Merit Systems Protection Board issues.

Employees facing disciplinary action have a champion at Pines Federal. We can help you with both your oral and written responses. The presence of progressive discipline in government is one reason why you need highly skilled legal help in these cases. We will fight to reduce the disciplinary penalty or eliminate it all together. If action has been taken against you, our seasoned litigators can vigorously represent you during an appeal to the Disciplinary Appeals Board (DAB).

Justice for the Disabled

We are a firm that represents all types of federal employees, but we have a special interest in defending those dealing with disability-related issues. We are confident in our ability to represent our clients in Disability Reasonable Accommodation cases before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

There also are times when a federal employee can no longer work because of a disability. If the disability is expected to last at least one year and prohibits the employee from fulfilling their job, they are eligible for a benefit of 60% of pre-disability income for the first year and 40% every year thereafter while disabled. This benefit can last as long as the disability continues. We handle these Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Disability Retirement applications. If you have applied for OPM Disability Retirement and been denied, we can argue on your behalf during appeals.

Union Representation

Another wrinkle of federal employment concerns federal union representation. Like many private-sector counterparts, federal employees can join a federal union. These unions have Master Bargaining Agreements with federal agencies to regulate the treatment of covered employees. 

Federal sector unions and union members face a multitude of overlapping topics while interfacing with the bureaucracy of many federal agencies. Handling these issues requires ample experience and a delicate touch. Fortunately, our founding attorney, Eric L. Pines, Esq., is currently in-house counsel for AFGE Union 1923 and federal unions for Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals. His colleagues have also represented various other Unions, including the NFFE, NTEU, and the IAM.

We frequently draft grievances and represent our clients at arbitration hearings within union representation. A Pines Federal Los Angeles federal employment attorney can also analyze Master Bargaining Agreement issues to potential violations.

Equal Employment Opportunity Cases

The EEOC is a federal agency that adjudicates complaints of discrimination. Many kinds of discrimination are illegal thanks to federal laws like the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. 

This includes discrimination based on :

  • Age, 
  • Race, 
  • Sex,
  • Disability,
  • Gender identity,
  • Genetic characteristics,
  • Color,
  • Ethnicity, and
  • Prior protected activity.

The EEOC also handles claims of harassment, including hostile work environment harassment and sexual harassment.

Filing an EEOC complaint is a rather lengthy process. You first have to exhaust your administrative remedies with your local agency. This means filing an informal EEO complaint and going through either traditional counseling or mediation. Assuming these steps do not resolve the complaint, you then receive an opportunity to file a formal complaint. Once you do that, the EEOC will assign an investigator to collect pertinent information and interview witnesses. 

Having an attorney at your side for every step of the EEO complaint process is critical for obtaining the best outcome possible. 

When you consult with our Los Angeles federal employment lawyers, you can expect us to:

  • Analyze your complaint;
  • Assess the relevant documents and evidence;
  • Provide an evaluation of your legal rights and options;
  • Negotiate with your management and the EEOC investigator; and
  • Litigate your case before the EEOC or federal court if necessary. 

We also handle appeals to the EEOC’s Office of Federal Operations (OFO) and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. No matter your case, our attorneys at Pines Federal can give you the quality representation you deserve.

Federal Whistleblower Defense

Over the years, federal laws like the Whistleblower Protection Act have sought to empower and protect federal whistleblowers. These acts also punish whistleblower retaliation. 

Therefore, you can receive protection for disclosing information that reveals:

  • A violation of any law, rule, or regulation;
  • Gross waste of funds;
  • Mismanagement;
  • An abuse of authority; or
  • A substantial, specific danger to public health or safety. 

That said, whistleblower retaliation is still a massive problem in the federal workplace. A qualified federal employment attorney can help you respond to retaliation and hold wrongdoers accountable. We can provide assistance with your claims, collect evidence, and even protect your identity against disclosure.

Reputation for Success

Our team at Pines Federal has been assisting clients nationwide for over six decades. We have earned a reputation for being steadfast and talented advocates to employees of federal agencies. Our clients and their needs always come first, and we are ready to fight on your behalf in court should the need arise.

If you have any questions about how we can help you, please contact us at any time through our online form or by calling (800) 801-0598.

Meet Our Legal Team

Eric Pines, Esq. Attorney
Amanda Moreno, Esq. Attorney
Justin Schnitzer, Esq. Attorney
Michael Kleinman, Esq. Attorney
Ibidun Roberts, Esq. OF COUNSEL
Elizabeth Matta, Esq. Attorney