So You Always Wanted to Go to Law School, Huh? How About Taking a Seat on the Witness Chair Instead!

Tuesday 8:00 – 11:30 AM

Session Description

This fun and interactive session will demonstrate how the depositions of the HR Manager and the decision-making Supervisor can go superbly . . . and how they could go terribly wrong.  Join an energetic Ogletree team who will walk you through a (not so) hypothetical scenario and deposition questioning of the key company witnesses by the fired employee’s attorney and by the company’s lawyer.  What documents will be used as exhibits?  Did the company witnesses prepare for their depositions well?  What questions by the employee’s attorney will the witnesses stumble or crumble on?  Can questioning by the company’s lawyer save the situation?  What will the witnesses discuss with their lawyer during the breaks?  Will the settlement value of the claim increase or decrease?  And, can the case be dismissed on a summary judgment motion?  As an attendee, you will have the opportunity to actively participate by asking additional questions of the witnesses, as well as being the judge and jury at the end of the session.  Don’t miss this eye-opening learning opportunity . . . before you are asked to take the witness seat yourself in real life!


James M. Paul

Jim has extensive trial and appellate experience with handling labor and employment law litigation in federal and state courts, and before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Department of Labor, Department of Justice, Missouri Commission on Human Rights, Illinois Department of Human Rights, and several other federal and state agencies. He has also earned the national Society for Human Resource Management’s “SHRM-SCP” certification and regularly advises employers on all labor and human resource management issues in an effort to prevent or resolve employee issues before they escalate into legal disputes. As Co-Chair of the firm’s Disability Access practice group, Jim advises clients regarding legal requirements for accommodating disabled individuals and defends Americans with Disabilities and Rehabilitation Act lawsuits nationally.

Prior to his private practice of law, Jim served as judicial law clerk to the Honorable Ray Price, Jr. of the Missouri Supreme Court and then as a Missouri Assistant Attorney General. As Assistant Attorney General, he represented the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, the Missouri Division of Labor Standards, and the Missouri Commission on Human Rights by enforcing state discrimination and wage and hour laws. He also worked in Washington, D.C. on legislative issues for the late Missouri Governor Carnahan and has taught Trial Advocacy at Saint Louis University as an Adjunct Professor.

Andrew L. Metcalf

Andrew represents businesses and public organizations in all aspects of employment law, including both litigation and human resources counseling. He assists clients facing lawsuits and administrative charges alleging employment discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and violations of other workplace laws and regulations, including the FMLA and FLSA. He has guided clients through investigations by the EEOC, Missouri Commission on Human Rights, the Department of Labor, and OSHA. Having extensive experience with complex employment litigation, Andrew offers strategies to ensure clients are efficiently and thoroughly protected in workplace legal matters. As a chapter editor for a treatise on the FMLA, Andrew has extensive knowledge about employee leave of absence laws.

Andrew also helps businesses and human resources professionals minimize risk by offering practical strategies and legal counseling on workplace policies, including the preparation and review of employee handbooks and employment contracts. He regularly speaks to business groups about best practices and litigation avoidance, and he is a frequent author about developments under Missouri law.

Andrew is a Committee Chair for the Human Resources Management Association of Greater St. Louis, and has led several initiatives to help HR professionals network and launch their careers.

Shelley I. Ericsson

Shelley Ericsson is a shareholder in the Kansas City office of Ogletree Deakins. She is an experienced trial lawyer having represented both Missouri and Kansas employers in state and federal courts on a wide range of workplace matters. Since 2007, Shelley has been selected by her peers as one of the “Best of the Bar” in the labor and employment field by the Kansas City Business Journal.

Shelley counsels companies of all sizes, from family-owned and privately held to Fortune 100 companies, on how to navigate various employment laws, including the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA), Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, Americans with Disabilities Act, Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the companion state Equal Employment Opportunity laws. Her services include drafting policies and procedures that are tailored for companies and their individual philosophies. In addition to her employment cases, she has successfully tried a number of medical malpractice actions in Missouri state court.

Shelley is very active in the legal community and was a board member for the Association for Women Lawyers of Greater Kansas City, serving as its president in 2011. She is a frequent public speaker on employment and labor law and litigation.

Walter M. Brown

Walter is a shareholder in the Kansas City office of Ogletree Deakins.  He represents a broad range of litigation clients, from individuals and small companies to large corporations. He concentrates his practice on employment law matters, including state and federal discrimination actions based on race, age, sex, disability, FMLA retaliation, and class action wage and hour claims under the FLSA. His employment practice also includes a wealth of experience in cases of trade secret misappropriation and the violation of non-competition and non-solicitation agreements. Additionally, he represents clients in business cases involving breach of contract, business torts, fraud, negligent misrepresentation, tortious interference, breach of fiduciary duty and partnership disputes.

Walter also counsels clients on employment policy and compliance issues. He performs management training and drafts policy handbooks for clients in various industries.

Walter is licensed to practice before the State and Federal Courts in both Kansas and Missouri.