Law Office of Jean Jorgensen, PS
- BIG ENOUGH TO GET RESULTS, SMALL ENOUGH TO CARE.
Business Law, Business Formation, Business Litigation, Business Planning, Buying and Selling of Businesses, Closely Held Business Law, Limited Liability Company Law, Partnership Law, Small Business Law, Contracts and Breach of Contract, Construction Law, Construction Accidents and Defects, Mechanics Liens.
Washington State law is very supportive of employees and their right to have wages paid in full and on time. Yet, I have had many clients come to me because their final paycheck was being delayed, withheld, or because unlawful deductions were being made. One of my clients had endured a significant deduction being regularly made from her paycheck for nearly a year, attributed to her employer’s legal expenses. When she procured alternative employment, the employer started sending threatening letters to her, attempted to collect the balance of this disputed debt. I got involved and convinced the employer not only to stop its collection of the “debt,” but to refund all of the unlawful deductions that had been taken from her paychecks. Otherwise, if I proceeded to file a lawsuit, the employer would face claims for double damages and attorneys’ fees and costs. Not only was my client successful financially, but she felt completely vindicated by shifting the power away from her national employer. This was a victory for the “little guy,” which is what I enjoy most about my career.
I have tried many wage claims that have generated published appellate opinions.
Disability Insurance, Medical Leave, Disability Claims
Washington State has extraordinarily liberal and protective laws to protect employees that suffer from any type of medical issue. Our laws are even more comprehensive and employee friendly than the federal laws. Many of my clients come to me because they have never been involved in a situation in which they are dealing with a medical issue. Unfortunately, navigating the laws can be fairly complicated. Frequently, I am able to identify and utilize an insurance policy to provide much needed financial support, in order to permit my client the time necessary to recover. The Washington laws pertaining to medical leave are also designed to give an employee time off to recover, in a way that protects the employee’s position. Employees often return to work short of reaching a full recovery. It is surprising how little employers understand about their legal duties in handing someone with a medical issue. The law is very clear in this regard, yet, I still have a great number of employees come to me for help because they are being demoted, transferred, or even terminated simply because their medical issue is viewed as a detriment by their employer. I have successfully taken on the largest employer in the world. The size of the employer does not matter when they are breaking the law.
I have successfully procured disability benefits from a variety of insurers, and have a substantial amount of experience litigating disability discrimination and medical leave claims.
Employment Agreements / Severance Agreements
High managerial-level employees seek my help in negotiating and drafting employment agreements that govern their employment relationship. Although Washington is an “at-will” State and employment may be ended at any time and for any reason, a contract between the employer and employee can alter that relationship. Some employees have the bargaining power to ensure that they will only be terminated “for good cause.” Some employees may benefit from stock options that are being offered from the employer as part of their compensation. It is very wise to make the investment ahead of time to ensure that your rights as an employee are fully protected.
When the end of the employment relationship arrives, many employers are willing to consider offering a severance package in exchange for a release of potential claims by the employee. As this agreement may adversely affect the employee’s future employment options, it is critical to have an experienced attorney participate in the negotiation and drafting of a severance agreement to protect your rights. Otherwise, an employee might find themselves in a position in which they have limited their options.
I have assisted numerous employees with negotiating employment agreements and severance agreements, and have experience litigating them as well.
When an employee loses his or her job, frequently the first concern they have is whether or not they will be able to obtain unemployment benefits. Frequently, employers use this as a bargaining chip, but it is not theirs to use. Employers can choose not to contest an application for unemployment benefits, but employers cannot deny them. An independent agency, the Employment Security Department, evaluates each case individually in order to determine whether benefits are awarded pursuant to the guidelines set forth in Washington statutes. I have successfully assisted numerous applicants to obtain benefits as well as to appeal the denial of benefits.
In this part of the country, it is critical to understand how an employer’s intellectual property is protected by the law. An employee cannot utilize confidential information gained as part of their former employment to unfairly compete with that employer.
Insurance, Automobile Insurance, Commercial Insurance, Insurance Bad Faith, Life and Health Insurance, Property Insurance.
Real Estate Law
Real Estate, Commercial Leasing and Commercial Real Estate, Landlord and Tenant Law, Mortgages.
Personal Injury Law
Personal Injury, Automobile Accidents and Injuries, Dog Bites, Harassment, Slip and Fall, Wrongful Death.
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