Ms. Ochs works in the San Francisco office of Ogletree Deakins, where she is a Shareholder. She has 18 years of experience as a civil litigator, with an emphasis on the defense of employment-related claims in federal and state trial and appellate courts and administrative agencies. Ms. Ochs’ experience includes successfully defending employers in both jury and bench trials and in arbitration proceedings. In addition to her active labor and employment litigation practice, Ms. Ochs has litigated a range of business disputes including contract, defamation, business interference, trade secrets, unfair competition, and fraud disputes.
Ms. Ochs also has active advice, training, and investigations practices, assisting employers with a variety of employment and industrial relations issues. She has represented both private and public employers in a broad array of local, national, and international industries including the accounting, banking, defense, education, hotel, manufacturing, retail, transportation, technology, and utility industries.
Ms. Ochs received her bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she was a Regents Scholar. She received her law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law. She currently teaches at Hastings as an Adjunct Professor of Law in the areas of Pretrial Practice and Employment Discrimination.
She is the immediate past Chairperson of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the National Bar Association (“NBA”), past President of Black Women Lawyers of Northern California, and is a past Director of NBA Region IX.
- (2013) United States District Court, N.D. Cal. - Secured summary judgment of FEHA medical condition and leave retaliation claim alleged by former radio executive.
- (2013) San Francisco County Superior Court - First-chaired matter set for jury trial. Age discrimination claim alleged by radio personality. Favorably settled day before trial.
- (2013) United States District Court, N.D. Cal. - Secured dissolution of highly contentious preliminary injunction prior to trial. Trade secret dispute between prior and subsequent employers and former employees in language interpretation industry.
- (2013) United States District Court, N.D. Cal. - Achieved dismissal of unfair competition and wage hour declaratory relief claims by former sports agent and secured out-of-state arbitration of employer's claims.
- (2013) California Supreme Court - Led appellate briefing on petition for review of decision denying motion to compel arbitration.
- (2012) California Court of Appeals, 2nd Appellate Dist. - Led appellate argument leading to reversal of denial of motion to compel FEHA discrimination claims.
- (2011) San Mateo County Superior Court – First-chaired matter set for jury trial. Seven figure contract dispute between television stations. Plaintiff dismissed with prejudice day before trial.
- (2010) - Santa Clara County Superior Court – Led trade secrets cross-action against former employee claiming alleged harassment. After significant law and motion, achieved terminating sanctions and default judgment in favor of employer in excess of $100,000.
- (2010) San Francisco AAA – Litigated employment arbitration. Compensation dispute involving commission claim in excess of $200,000 under complex compensation plan and cross-claim against employee for overpaid wages. Achieved judgment in favor of employer in excess of $40,000.
- (2009) San Francisco AAA – Litigated employment arbitration. Compensation dispute involving commission claim in excess of $200,000 under complex compensation plan. Achieved complete defense award.
- (2009) San Mateo County Superior Court – Co-chaired jury trial. Pregnancy discrimination claim alleged by television production manager. Seven figure claim settled after $65,000 jury verdict, with no emotional distress damages.
- (2008) San Mateo County Superior Court – Co-chaired jury trial. Sex discrimination claim by television shipping assistant. Settled day of trial.
- (2008) California Court of Appeals, 1st Appellate Dist. – Led appellate briefing. Multi-plaintiff race discrimination/harassment suit. Defense jury verdict affirmed.
- (2008) Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal – Led appellate briefing and trial court proceedings. Race discrimination claim by employee terminated for falsifying time card. Summary judgment granted and affirmed.
- (2007) Alameda County Superior Court – First-chaired jury trial. Disability discrimination claim by long-term public employee. Defense verdict rendered.
- (2007) United States District Court, N.D. Cal. – First-chaired bench trial. Disability Discrimination. Defense decision rendered (bench trial).
- (2007) California Court of Appeals, 6th Appellate Dist. – Led appellate briefing and argument. Engineer alleged wrongful demotion/ discipline/ sexual orientation/ wage and penalty claims. Defense jury verdict on wrongful demotion/discipline affirmed; summary adjudication of wage claims affirmed.
- (2005) Santa Clara County Superior Court – Second-chaired jury trial. Engineer alleged wrongful demotion/discipline. Defense verdict rendered.
- (1998) San Diego County Superior Court – Second-chaired jury trial. Partnership dispute between disenfranchised partners. 1.2 million jury verdict rendered (represented plaintiff).
Education and Honors
J.D., University of California, Hastings College of the Law, 1995
B.A., University of California at Santa Cruz, 1991
- Regents Scholar
- Adjunct Associate Professor – Hastings College of the Law
- Wiley Manuel Law Foundation (Board Member)
- Alameda County Bar Association (Labor and Employment Section)
- American Bar Association (Labor & Employment Section)
- Bar Association of San Francisco (Labor and Employment Section)
- Past President (2009-10), Black Women Lawyers of Northern California
- California Association of Black Lawyers
- Charles Houston Bar Association
- National Bar Association (Board Member at Large, 2009-10; Chair, 2007-2010, Labor & Employment Section; Director of Region IX, 2006-08)
- National Employment Law Council
- State Bar of California (Labor and Employment Section)
- Board of Directors for the Volunteer Legal Services Program
- Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - "Employment Law Litigation, New Claims and Trends" - Phoenix - May 2012
- Ogletree Deakins Seminar - "Suddenly, Federal Law is Relevant Again" - San Francisco - October 2011
- Bridgeport Continuing Education - "Taking & Defending Depositions" - San Francisco - July 2011
- Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - "Conducting Successful Workplace Investigations" - Chicago - May 2011
- ABA’s 4th Annual Labor & Employment Law Pre-Conference - "Taking on the Yoke: Women and Minorities as Leaders of National Legal Associations" - Chicago - November 2010
- National Labor and Employment Law Developments - "Avoiding Sexual Harassment in the Workplace" - San Francisco - October 2010
- NBA Annual Convention - "Jeopardy in the Workplace" - New Orleans - August 2010
- NBA Annual Convention - "Meet the EEOC” (moderator)" - New Orleans - August 2010
- Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - "Conducting Successful Workplace Investigations" - Las Vegas - May 2010
- Black Women Lawyers Survival Series - "How to (Not Just) Survive a Law Firm" - San Francisco - April 2010
- NBA Labor & Employment Law Section 3rd Annual CLE Conference - "Coordinator and Luncheon Speaker" - Atlanta - March 2010
- Labor and Employment Law Developments in the State of California - "A Guide to Implementing the Interactive Process When Accommodating Disabilities in the Workplace" - San Francisco - November 2009
- NBA Annual Convention - "Jeopardy in the Workplace" - San Diego - August 2009
- Ogletree Deakins Seminar - "COBRA and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009" - San Francisco - June 2009
- NBA Labor & Employment Law Section 2nd Annual CLE Conference - "Coordinator and Luncheon Moderator" - New Orleans - March 2009
In The News
- November 3, 2011 - - "Juries Shift Sympathies to Workers"
- January 17, 2014 - Law360 - "Sorting Laundry: The Scope of Calif. Trade Secrets Act"
- August 2012 - California Lawyer - "Book Review - LAWTALK The Unknown Stories Behind Familiar Legal Expressions"