Alexandra A. Bodnar
Ms. Bodnar defends employers in litigation, including wage and hour class actions, harassment, discrimination and wrongful discharge cases and trade secret litigation. She has experience in federal and state court at both the trial and appellate court levels, experience handling arbitrations and experience before California and federal administrative agencies including the DLSE, EEOC and DFEH. She also counsels employers on employment law compliance and litigation avoidance, regularly conducts training on a wide array of employment law topics, conducts investigations into employee misconduct, and is a frequent speaker on employment law issues.
Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Bodnar led the employment practice for the Los Angeles office of a large international law firm.
- Defending class certification of an overtime and meal period case in a class action filed against an educational institution by its admissions representatives.
- Obtaining complete dismissal of claims brought against a franchise in a class action regarding alleged wage and hour violations of its franchisees.
- Defending a US-based national financial services company in a California statewide representative action and potential class action seeking damages under state wage and hour law based on alleged “off-the-clock” work and failure to pay meal and rest breaks. The case was compelled to arbitration and settled favorably.
- Defending a closet company against a California statewide class action on behalf of its designers, who sought allegedly unpaid commissions and bonuses, reimbursements for mileage and other business-related expenses. The court granted a demurrer to three of the eight causes of action, and four of the five defendants were dismissed based on the motion. The case was settled thereafter on very favorable terms.
- Defending a manufacturing company against a California statewide class action on behalf of its commissioned salespeople, who sought allegedly unpaid commissions and reimbursements. The case was settled on very favorable terms.
- Defending a temporary services company in a California class action by workers assigned to a manufacturing company who allegedly failed to provide meal periods in accordance with California wage and hour laws. The case was settled on very favorable terms for the client.
- Defending a financial services company in two California statewide class actions on behalf of managers alleging they were improperly categorized as exempt from overtime and customer service representatives alleging they were forced to work off the clock. Ms. Bodnar forced the two cases to be mediated together, arguing that the potential classes overlapped, and obtained a favorable settlement for the client.
- Reaching a favorable settlement in a class action brought against a temporary services agency by terminated employees alleging that they were not paid their final pay on a timely basis in accordance with California Labor Code Section 203.
- Defending against two companion California statewide collective actions by airport shuttle drivers seeking overtime and unpaid wages under the California Labor Code and relief for unfair business practices under the California Business and Professions Code. In the first case, the trial court granted the motion to dismiss all of the plaintiffs’ claims except the claims for overtime pay. The California Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s ruling on the claims for overtime pay and compelled the case to arbitration. Following the decision by the Court of Appeal, the plaintiffs’ counsel withdrew from the cases and all named plaintiffs stipulated to dismiss their claims.
- Obtaining a dismissal of a class action brought against an airline by temporary service workers assigned to work for the airline’s subcontractor.
- Defending a petroleum products company in a California statewide class action brought by truck drivers claiming that the company failed to follow California’s unique meal period requirement rules. After the issue of class certification was fully briefed and heard, and the court signaled that it was unlikely to certify a class, the case settled on favorable terms for the client.
- Obtaining dismissal of a California state-wide meal, break and overtime class action against a franchisor hair salon business brought by an employee of a franchisee.
Discrimination, Harassment and Wrongful Termination:
- Successful representation in arbitration of a Japan-based biopharmaceutical company in connection with the whistle-blowing, wrongful termination and fraud claims of the former CEO
- Successful trial representation of an airline executive accused of age discrimination, harassment and retaliation.
- Obtaining summary judgment on all claims, including sexual harassment and gender discrimination, brought by a Los Angeles-based employee of a medical devices manufacturer; the decision was affirmed on appeal.
- Obtaining complete dismissal of race discrimination and harassment claims brought against a manufacturing company.
- Obtaining summary judgment on behalf of a security services company in connection with a claim brought by a former employee alleging that he was terminated for reporting discrimination. The judgment was affirmed on appeal.
- Obtaining summary judgment on disability discrimination claims brought by a former employee of a real estate company. The judgment was affirmed on appeal.
- Obtaining summary judgment in connection with discrimination and retaliation claims brought against an insurance brokerage firm.
- Obtaining a dismissal in exchange for a waiver of costs after filing a motion for summary judgment in a race, gender and disability discrimination and harassment case.
Trade Secret Misappropriation:
- Obtaining a successful resolution of an action brought against a bank by a competitor for unlawful competition and misappropriation of trade secrets.
- Obtaining a favorable result for an insurance brokerage firm in an action against a competitor and a departing employee for misappropriation of trade secrets, unfair competition and violation of the Computer, Fraud and Abuse Act.
- Counseling employers on trade secret agreements and covenants not to compete.
- Defeating summary judgment in a trade secret, unfair competition and Computer Fraud and Abuse Act case.
- Obtaining a favorable result for an insurance brokerage firm in a connection with an employee's former employers' claims for alleged misappropriation of trade secrets and violation of a non-compete agreement.
- Authored amicus curae brief in support of the constitutionality of the city of Oakland's "bubble ordinance" preventing third parties from approaching patients within a set space outside reproductive rights clinics.
Education and Honors
J.D., University of Southern California, 1996
B.A., Dartmouth College, 1991
- Moot Court Honors Program
- Managing Editor, Review of Law & Women's Studies
- Honors Program, Government
- Super Lawyers (2011-2014)
- Rising Star (2004-2010)
- AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell
- Dartmouth Lawyers Association (Secretary)
- 2010 American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution 12th Annual Spring Conference - "An In-Depth Look at Class Action Arbitrations in the Consumer and Employment Contexts" - San Francisco - April 2010
- California Fashion Association - "California Employment Law: What Apparel Industry Employers Must Know" - Los Angeles - 2010
- Los Angeles County Bar Association Employment Law Nuts & Bolts Seminar - "The Intersection of Disability Discrimination and Workers Compensation" - Los Angeles - Summer 2008
In The News
- November 17, 2014 - - "A Good Gift-Giving Rule: Would Your Mom Approve?"
- June 25, 2014 - - "When Sexual Harassment Involves HR Employees"
- March 27, 2014 - - "Ninth Circuit Rejects Suit Brought by Worker Who Expressly Declined to Take FMLA Leave"
- February 11, 2014 - - "On Valentine's Day, Bring Cupcakes, Not the Tiffany Necklace"
- Summer 2012 - - "Part Litigator, Part Guru"
- May 29, 2013 - Ogletree Deakins Blog Post - "The Wage & Hour Perils of Employing Personal Assistants"
- 2008 - Communication And Prevention: Key Strategies For Discrimination Suits - "Employment Discrimination Lawsuits"
- 2008 - Labor and Employment Law 2008 - "Recent Updates In Labor And Employment Law"
- 1996 - Southern California Review of Law and Women's Studies - "Amending Title IX To Combat The Sexual Harassment Of Students By Students In Primary And Secondary School"