Cheryl D. Orr

Partner

San Francisco

(415) 591-7503 phone
(415) 591-7510 fax

Cheryl D. Orr is one of 12 elected managing partners of the firm and chair of the firm’s national Labor and Employment Practice Group. Cheryl concentrates her practice on defending employers nationwide against complex wage and hour class, collective, and representative actions arising in industries including retail, health care, pharmaceutical, finance, and manufacturing. She also has a long history of resolving wrongful termination, unfair competition and discrimination cases through a winning motion practice. In addition to litigation, she provides a full range of employment law counseling, audit and training services.

Cheryl is often quoted in the media on employment law issues. She is a frequent writer and lecturer on employment law topics and regularly chairs the American Conference Institute's national wage and hour class action conference.  Chambers USA consistently ranks Cheryl as one of the top employment lawyers in California, and the Daily Journal has named her as one of California’s Top Employment Lawyers and Top Women Lawyers. She is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America and a member of the American Employment Law Council.

Recognitions
Chambers USA, California, Labor & Employment (2015)
Daily Journal "California's Top Employment Lawyers" (2015)
Daily Journal "Top California Women Layers" (2016)
Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America

 

Experience

Wage and Hour Class / Collective / PAGA Litigation

Cheryl is a recognized national leader in defending multi-party wage and hour actions including state and federal class actions, national Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) collective actions, and California Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) representative actions.  Recent representative wage and hour litigation accomplishments include:

  • Defeating conditional certification of a national FLSA collective action filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California alleging unpaid overtime for all nonexempt employees of a national furniture retailer and getting claims dismissed against the individual defendants;

  • Defeating class certification on California statewide claims brought by employees of a Big Box store merchandiser in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California for unpaid minimum and overtime wages, meal and rest period premiums, and waiting time and wage statement penalties;

  • Obtaining complete dismissal of a national FLSA collective action filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California involving "on call" pay and overtime issues for drivers of a national respiratory care company;

  • Defeating conditional certification for a major clothing retailer in a national collective action brought pursuant to the FLSA in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida wherein the plaintiff alleged wage and hour violations following the reclassification of her position as an Assistant Department Manager from exempt to nonexempt;

  • Convincing a plaintiff to voluntarily dismiss her California statewide putative class and PAGA representative action filed against a chain retailer in Riverside Superior Court and brought on behalf of California nonexempt employees of aa chain baby retailer based upon a showing of compliant policies and practices;

  • Compelling to arbitration—and ultimately obtaining dismissal with prejudice of all claims—a statewide putative class and representative action brought against a craft store chain in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California that involved meal and rest break, failure to pay wages, inaccurate wage statements, unfair business practices, and PAGA claims;

  • Striking all state class action claims and limiting conditional certification of an FLSA collective action to three units of a hospital in a class/collective hybrid action brought by a former nurse against a hospital in Wisconsin state court for meal period and overtime claims;

  • Settling (while class certification and summary judgment motions were pending) a statewide putative class action filed in San Mateo Superior Court for nuisance value with the named plaintiffs who alleged multiple wage and hour claims (unpaid regular and overtime wages, noncompliant meal and rest periods, untimely payment of final wages, noncompliant itemized wage statements, unpaid/forfeited vacation, and violation of PAGA) against a pharmaceutical supply company’s call center;

  • Obtaining summary judgment in (and complete dismissal of) a state wage and hour class action filed in Orange County Superior Court by hourly drivers against a respiratory care company and involving statutory and contractual overtime claims;

  • Limiting conditional certification of a national FLSA collective action (overtime, travel pay, donning and doffing, off-the-clock) brought in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas against an international inventory company to one district and then prevailing on both a decertification and summary judgment motion;

  • Resolving a statewide putative independent contractor misclassification class action filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California against an international packaging company through an individual settlement and dismissal of class claims; and

  • Obtaining complete voluntary dismissal of a state wage and hour putative class action filed in Washington Superior court against an international retailer (alleging violations of state wage and hour laws concerning payment for training) upon demonstration of compliant policies and practices.

General Labor and Employment Experience

Cheryl leads a vibrant general employment litigation and counseling practice. Recent representative engagements include:

  • Spearheading both national and state audits, in multiple industries, that focused on employment law compliance generally; wage and hour issues only; or on specific issues, such as the proper classification of exempt employees;

  • Conducting numerous high-profile investigations regarding employment and regulatory issues;

  • Managing reductions in force for employers of all sizes while avoiding subsequent litigation; and

  • Supervising the defense of hundreds of single- and multi-plaintiff litigation matters resolved through favorable early settlements, dispositive motions, arbitration, or trial.

Published Opinions

Cheryl’s published opinions date back to early in her career.  Representative samples include:

Jackson v. Kaplan Higher Educ., LLC, 2015 WL 2095206 (E.D. Cal. May 5, 2015).
Ortiz v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., 2014 WL 4961126 (E.D. Cal. Oct 1, 2014).
Fardig v. Hobby Lobby Stores Inc., 2014 WL 2810025 (C.D. Cal. June 13, 2014).
Combs v. Greenfield, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 54622 (N.D. Cal. May 11, 2010).
Wren v. RGIS Inventory Specialists, 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74789 (N.D. Cal. Aug. 24, 2009).
Gomez v. Lincare, Inc., 173 Cal.App.4th 508 (2009)..
Johnson v. RGIS Inventory Specialists, 554 F. Supp.2d 693 (E.D. Tex. 2007).
Wells v. Board of Trustees of California State University, 393 F.Supp.2d 990 (N.D.Cal. 2005).
Wolfe v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Insurance Co., 46 Cal.App.4th 554 (1996).
Spellman v. Securities, Annuities & Ins. Services, Inc., 8 Cal.App.4th 452 (1992).

Publications

6/25/2014
Client Alert
The California Supreme Court Upholds Class But Not Representative Action Waivers In Iskanian
4/1/2014
Daily Journal
Commuter Policies Drive Employers to Offer More Benefits
11/19/2013
California HR Newsletter
Practical Tips for “Bring Your Own Devices” (BYOD) Policies and Practices
8/14/2013
Client Alert
Employer Liability Under State Medical Marijuana Laws
3/29/2013
Westlaw Journal Employment
Crowdsourcing: Applying Existing Law to the Future of Employment
10/8/2012
Inside Counsel
An Inside Look at Practice Management Within Law Firms
8/27/2012
Inside Counsel
New Trends in Misclassification Cases
8/27/2012
Inside Counsel
Labor: New trends in misclassification cases
7/30/2012
The Recorder
Employer’s BYOD Dilemma
5/8/2012
First Chair
Meeting the Challenge of Change
2/14/2012
San Francisco Daily Journal
Are Employers Ready to Welcome Home Returning Veterans?
1/4/2010
California State Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law
Chapter 20: State Common Law Torts, Business Torts and Unfair Competition Law
8/25/2009
Employment Law 360
Q&A With Drinker Biddle’s Cheryl Orr
10/8/2007
Labor & Employment Newsletter
Labor & Employment Update
8/27/2007
Labor & Employment Alert
Claim Adjusters Not Exempt According to California Court of Appeal

Events

6/2/2016
American Conference Institute’s 27th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
In-House Insights on New and Emerging Areas of Risk in the Wage & Hour Landscape
1/29/2016
American Conference Institute’s 26th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
In-House Insights on New and Emerging Areas of Risk in the Wage & Hour Landscape
10/28/2015
Strafford CLE Webinar
Defending California Wage and Hour Litigation Amid New Legislation and Court Decisions
10/9/2015
Bridgeport Continuing Education
What can (and should) Management Counsel, including In House Counsel, Advise Clients to Avoid and/or Minimize the Risks of a Wage Hour Class Action?
8/26/2015
California HR Webinar
When Employees Go Bad
9/29/2014
American Conference Institute’s 22nd National Forum
Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
6/18/2014
Bridgeport CLE
Drafting Arbitration Agreements in Business, Consumer and Employment Arenas
5/29/2014
American Conference Institute’s 21st National Forum
Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
2/20/2014
CFO Alliance Webinar
2014 CFO Sentiment Study Results
1/30/2014
American Conference Institute’s 20th National Forum
Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
12/13/2013
Bridgeport CE's Annual Wage & Hour Conference
Increasing the Chance of Success in Settling Wage & Hour Litigation
11/7/2013
NAWL General Counsel Institute
Workplace Bullying: An Examination of Current and Proposed Anti-Harassment Legislation
9/30/2013
American Conference Institute’s 19th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
In-House Roundtable: Preventing and Managing Wage and Hour Claims/Class Actions and Best Practices for Selection and Evaluation of Outside Counsel
9/9/2013
Drinker Biddle Webinar
Impact of DOMA and Proposition 8 on California Employers
8/28/2013
First Chair Awards Event
The Top Human Resources Issues for 2014
5/7/2013
American Conference Institute’s 18th National Forum
Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
4/24/2013
The Knowledge Congress Webcast
Wage & Hour: Mitigating Risks and Ensuring Compliance in 2013
3/27/2013
PRIMO Roundtable
Bring Your Own Device
3/22/2013
Law Seminars International
Bring Your Own Device Policies for the Workplace
1/24/2013
American Conference Institute
Co-Host of 17th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
7/20/2012
Bridgeport Continuing Education
Litigating Discrimination & Harassment Claims
7/19/2012
ACC San Francisco Bay Chapter
Privacy and Social Media - A Contradiction in Terms?
6/21/2012
ACC Chicago Chapter
Privacy and Social Media: A Contradiction in Terms?
5/31/2012
“In-House Roundtable: Preventing and Managing Wage and Hour Claims/Class Actions”
15th Annual ACI Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions Conference
1/24/2012
BayBio
1/19/2012
Bridgeport Continuing Education -- Mastering the Deposition
1/6/2012
Avoiding the Legal Landmines of Employee Separation and Release Agreements
12/7/2011
Litigation Skills for Legal Professionals Seminar
9/20/2011
ACI’s 13th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
7/19/2011
Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Small Businesses
5/23/2011
ACI's 12th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions
1/31/2011
American Conference Institute’s 11th National Forum
10/20/2010
ERI Webinar
10/7/2010
2010 Wage and Hour Litigation Conference
10/7/2010
BLR Webinar
10/7/2010
BLR Webinar
9/17/2010
Lorman Education Services Seminar
5/4/2010
BLR
12/8/2009
Los Angeles County Bar Association Antitrust Section
9/18/2008
Wage & Hour Litigation Conference

News

4/25/2016
Cheryl Orr Listed in Daily Journal’s Top 100 California Women Lawyers
11/13/2015
Cheryl Orr Quoted in Variety
10/12/2015
Cheryl Orr Quoted in Daily Journal
7/16/2015
Cheryl Orr Quoted By Law360 About New DOL Independent Contractor Misclassification Guidance
6/3/2015
Cheryl Orr Recognized as a Top Labor and Employment Attorney in California
5/26/2015
Cheryl Orr Profiled in the Daily Journal
10/31/2014
Cheryl Orr Quoted in The Los Angeles Times
4/25/2014
Cheryl Orr Quoted in Los Angeles Times Story "Lawsuit challenges a Hollywood pillar: Unpaid internships"
11/22/2013
Cheryl Orr Noted in the Chicago Tribune
7/23/2013
Cheryl Orr Quoted in Human Resource Executive Online
4/17/2013
Cheryl Orr Quoted in Daily Journal
3/29/2013
Cheryl Orr’s Discussion of Virtual Sweatshops Published in Westlaw Journal Employment
10/25/2012
Cheryl Orr Quoted in Law360
10/9/2012
Cheryl Orr Article Published in Inside Counsel
8/28/2012
Cheryl Orr Wage & Hour Article Published in Inside Counsel
7/30/2012
Cheryl Orr and Heather Sager Publish Articles in The Recorder
5/10/2012
Cheryl Orr Interviews Kaplan In-House Counsel for Cover Story in First Chair Magazine

Wage and Hour Class / Collective / PAGA Litigation

Cheryl is a recognized national leader in defending multi-party wage and hour actions including state and federal class actions, national Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) collective actions, and California Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) representative actions.  Recent representative wage and hour litigation accomplishments include:

  • Defeating conditional certification of a national FLSA collective action filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California alleging unpaid overtime for all nonexempt employees of a national furniture retailer and getting claims dismissed against the individual defendants;

  • Defeating class certification on California statewide claims brought by employees of a Big Box store merchandiser in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California for unpaid minimum and overtime wages, meal and rest period premiums, and waiting time and wage statement penalties;

  • Obtaining complete dismissal of a national FLSA collective action filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California involving "on call" pay and overtime issues for drivers of a national respiratory care company;

  • Defeating conditional certification for a major clothing retailer in a national collective action brought pursuant to the FLSA in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida wherein the plaintiff alleged wage and hour violations following the reclassification of her position as an Assistant Department Manager from exempt to nonexempt;

  • Convincing a plaintiff to voluntarily dismiss her California statewide putative class and PAGA representative action filed against a chain retailer in Riverside Superior Court and brought on behalf of California nonexempt employees of aa chain baby retailer based upon a showing of compliant policies and practices;

  • Compelling to arbitration—and ultimately obtaining dismissal with prejudice of all claims—a statewide putative class and representative action brought against a craft store chain in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California that involved meal and rest break, failure to pay wages, inaccurate wage statements, unfair business practices, and PAGA claims;

  • Striking all state class action claims and limiting conditional certification of an FLSA collective action to three units of a hospital in a class/collective hybrid action brought by a former nurse against a hospital in Wisconsin state court for meal period and overtime claims;

  • Settling (while class certification and summary judgment motions were pending) a statewide putative class action filed in San Mateo Superior Court for nuisance value with the named plaintiffs who alleged multiple wage and hour claims (unpaid regular and overtime wages, noncompliant meal and rest periods, untimely payment of final wages, noncompliant itemized wage statements, unpaid/forfeited vacation, and violation of PAGA) against a pharmaceutical supply company’s call center;

  • Obtaining summary judgment in (and complete dismissal of) a state wage and hour class action filed in Orange County Superior Court by hourly drivers against a respiratory care company and involving statutory and contractual overtime claims;

  • Limiting conditional certification of a national FLSA collective action (overtime, travel pay, donning and doffing, off-the-clock) brought in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas against an international inventory company to one district and then prevailing on both a decertification and summary judgment motion;

  • Resolving a statewide putative independent contractor misclassification class action filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California against an international packaging company through an individual settlement and dismissal of class claims; and

  • Obtaining complete voluntary dismissal of a state wage and hour putative class action filed in Washington Superior court against an international retailer (alleging violations of state wage and hour laws concerning payment for training) upon demonstration of compliant policies and practices.

General Labor and Employment Experience

Cheryl leads a vibrant general employment litigation and counseling practice. Recent representative engagements include:

  • Spearheading both national and state audits, in multiple industries, that focused on employment law compliance generally; wage and hour issues only; or on specific issues, such as the proper classification of exempt employees;

  • Conducting numerous high-profile investigations regarding employment and regulatory issues;

  • Managing reductions in force for employers of all sizes while avoiding subsequent litigation; and

  • Supervising the defense of hundreds of single- and multi-plaintiff litigation matters resolved through favorable early settlements, dispositive motions, arbitration, or trial.

Published Opinions

Cheryl’s published opinions date back to early in her career.  Representative samples include:

Jackson v. Kaplan Higher Educ., LLC, 2015 WL 2095206 (E.D. Cal. May 5, 2015).
Ortiz v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., 2014 WL 4961126 (E.D. Cal. Oct 1, 2014).
Fardig v. Hobby Lobby Stores Inc., 2014 WL 2810025 (C.D. Cal. June 13, 2014).
Combs v. Greenfield, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 54622 (N.D. Cal. May 11, 2010).
Wren v. RGIS Inventory Specialists, 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74789 (N.D. Cal. Aug. 24, 2009).
Gomez v. Lincare, Inc., 173 Cal.App.4th 508 (2009)..
Johnson v. RGIS Inventory Specialists, 554 F. Supp.2d 693 (E.D. Tex. 2007).
Wells v. Board of Trustees of California State University, 393 F.Supp.2d 990 (N.D.Cal. 2005).
Wolfe v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Insurance Co., 46 Cal.App.4th 554 (1996).
Spellman v. Securities, Annuities & Ins. Services, Inc., 8 Cal.App.4th 452 (1992).