Spencer C. Skeen
Mr. Skeen is the Managing Shareholder of Ogletree Deakins' San Diego office. He devotes his practice exclusively to the representation of companies and management in a wide range of labor and employment disputes. Mr. Skeen has represented private and publicly traded employers in hundreds of class and representative actions, including claims brought under California's Private Attorneys General Act. He has also defended clients in individual lawsuits alleging discrimination, retaliation, harassment, wrongful discharge, breach of contract, disability access, noncompete, and trade secret claims. Mr. Skeen's clients include businesses in the retail, toy, petroleum, food and beverage, healthcare, transportation, energy, golf, and financial services industries, as well as casinos, non-profit trade associations and governmental entities.
Mr. Skeen lectures frequently on California employment law topics. He has been recognized as one of California's leading employment lawyers multiple times as a Super Lawyer by the publishers of San Diego Super Lawyers magazine, a recognition based on peer reviews and professional achievement limited to five percent of all California lawyers. Mr. Skeen has also received numerous peer review awards including his repeated selection as a "Top Attorney" in the labor and employment category in the San Diego Daily Transcript's Top Attorneys publication.
Mr. Skeen currently serves or has recently served as lead defense counsel in several significant California and nationwide class actions, including:
- Nationwide class action against an alcoholic beverage manufacturer alleging unfair competition claims.
- Nationwide class action against the world's largest plush toy manufacturer alleging unfair competition claims.
- Eight California class actions against a restaurant chain alleging wage and hour, off-the-clock, PAGA, expense reimbursement, and meal and rest period violations.
- Two California wage and hour class and PAGA actions against a restaurant chain alleging misclassification of exempt restaurant managers.
- Class action and PAGA action against a petroleum company alleging seating, off-the-clock, overtime, and meal/rest period violations.
- Three separate California class actions against towing companies alleging wage and hour, meal and rest period violations.
- California class and PAGA action against the world's largest plush toy manufacturer alleging expense reimbursement, meal and rest period violations
- California class action against a wireless communications company alleging overtime, meal and rest period violations
Mr. Skeen was also the lead trial attorney in the following matters:
- Successful defense of a month long jury trial involving allegations of misclassification of exempt workers.
- Successful bench trial involving allegations of unpaid commissions by outside sales representative.
- Multiple successful arbitrations and administrative hearings before administrative bodies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Department of Labor, the Department of Health Services, the United States Department of Agriculture, and FINRA.
Education and Honors
J.D., with great distinction, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, 1995
B.A., University of California-Davis, 1992
- Top Attorney –San Diego Daily Transcript (2008. 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014)
- San Diego Super Lawyer (2008-2012, 2014)
- Top Attorney – SD Metro Magazine (2011)
- Top Attorney – Employment – Avvo (2012, 2013)
- Best of the Bar - San Diego Business Journal (2014)
- San Diego County Bar Association (Former Co-Chair Employment Section)
- Board Member, San Ysidro Chamber of Commerce
- American Bar Association (Labor & Employment Section)
- American Bar Association (Class Actions and Derivative Suits Committe)
- General Counsel, Neighborhood Market Association
- Association of Business Trial Lawyers
- State Bar of California (Employment Law Section)
In The News
- June 3, 2014 - - "Arbitration Agreement Only Partially Translated to Spanish Raises Red Flag With California Court "
- February 28, 2014 - - "Constructively Quit or Fired?—California Court Holds Employer Must Exhaust All Reasonable Alternatives"
- January 17, 2014 - - "Western Medical Case Adds Harris Rule To Retaliation Fights"
- December 30, 2013 - - "California Court Requires Clear and Unmistakable Waiver to Enforce Arbitration Agreement"
- September 30, 2013 - - "Employment Lawyers Discuss Future Trends Affecting Business"
- March 15, 2013 - - "5 Tips For Handling Employee Cybersmears"
- July 7, 2014 - SHRM.org - "Undocumented Worker May Recover Lost Wages"
- June 27, 2014 - Ogletree Deakins Publication - "California Supreme Court: Undocumented Worker May Recover Lost Wages for Period Up to Employer’s Discovery of Immigration Status"
- June 27, 2014 - Ogletree Deakins Publication - "California eAuthority"
- December 17, 2013 - The Daily Transcript - "Brinker's leftovers: Meal period class actions survive"
- September 30, 2013 - San Diego Business Journal - "Thinking Outside the Box: One Way to Avoid Bet-The-Company Litigation"
- September 24, 2013 - Ogletree Deakins Blog Post - "California Supreme Court Grants Review in Brown"
- June 21, 2013 - Ogletree Deakins Publication - "No Administrative Exemption Under California Law Where Worker Did Not Receive Fixed Salary"