Mollie M. Burks

Partner

  • Office Contact Info
  • Biography

    Mollie Burks is a Partner in the Walnut Creek and Los Angeles offices of GRSM and a member of the Labor and Employment Practice Groups.

    Mollie specializes in litigating complex multi-plaintiff and class action wage and hour cases in state and federal court. She is among a small group of lawyers who has taken a wage and hour class action case to trial in California Superior Court. She also handles litigation involving claims of wrongful discharge, discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. 

    Mollie's practice also includes providing advice and counseling to employers, including auditing workplace practices, drafting polices and employee handbooks, and presenting on current trends in labor and employment law.

    Mollie's industry experience is broad, as she has represented companies in the technology, security, service, manufacturing, health, retail, hospitality, education, and entertainment sectors.

    Admissions

    • California

    Memberships

    • Los Angeles County Bar Association
    • Association of Business Trial Lawyers
  • Practice Areas
  • Representative Experience

    Representative Experience 

    • Secured defense verdict after two-week trial in San Francisco Superior Court on behalf of public relations company against a claim by a former executive that he was owed more than $1 million in severance under his employment contract after the company indicated an intent to reduce his duties. The executive claimed the company had breached his employment contract and intentionally prevented him from meeting certain performance metrics under his contract. After three hours of deliberations, the jury returned a verdict for Ms. Burks’ client on the executive’s tort and breach of employment contract claims, and even awarded the client $125,000 on the company’s claim that the executive had wrongly failed to pay back a loan from the company.
    • Secured complete dismissal of case on summary judgment in Los Angeles Superior Court on behalf of a financial institution and individual manager against a claim by a former employee that he had been discriminated against on the basis of his gender and race and defamed post-termination.
    • Obtained appellate reversal of a $500,000 trial verdict against client, an oil drilling and technology company, in a breach of implied employment contract case.
    • Secured a complete defense arbitration award on behalf of a technology-based glass processing company against the company’s former CEO, following a week long employment arbitration in which the CEO alleged breach of employment contract, fraud, and various wage and hour-based claims. The claimant sought in excess of $400,000 in damages, plus penalties, interest and attorney’s fees.
    • In September of 2013, secured a complete defense arbitration award on behalf of client, a maker of medical imaging software and devices, following a three-day AAA employment arbitration brought by client’s former regional sales manager, alleging claims of gender discrimination, wrongful termination and retaliation.
    • Trial counsel in Hurley v. Electrical Training Institute, Case No. BC464344, L.A. County Superior Court, 2012. Plaintiff claimed that he had been discriminated against on the basis of his religion (Jehovah’s Witness) and that the apprenticeship program failed to accommodate his religion by placing him on swing shift work assignment that conflicted with his religious meetings. Following a two week trial, the jury returned a complete defense verdict on all claims.
    • Won summary judgment on behalf of client in a sexual harassment, gender/ethnicity discrimination, wrongful termination and wage and hour case venued in San Diego County Superior Court.
    • Trial Counsel in Luk v. Landwin Management dba Los Angeles/San Gabriel Hilton Hotel, Case No. BC364658, L.A. County Superior Court, 2009. Plaintiff claimed that she had been subject to severe sexual harassment and retaliation and was forced to resign her position at the hotel. She also claimed various labor code violations relating to wage and hour practices. After a two week jury trial, the court entered directed verdicts on the wage and hour claims and the jury deadlocked on the remaining claims. Upon retrial in 2009, the jury returned defense verdicts on three of the four remaining claims with the Court ultimately dismissing the final claim not decided by the jury for a complete defense verdict in the case.
    • Trial Counsel in Bedford Howard v. MV Transportation, Case No. BC331523, L.A. County Superior Court, 2008. Plaintiff claimed that the defendant, a nationwide transportation company, terminated his employment in retaliation for complaining of racial harassment and reporting what he claimed were billing irregularities to a governmental agency overseeing the performance of certain government contracts being performed by the company. The jury in this two week case returned a defense verdict on all claims.
  • Publications & Presentations

    Presentations

    • Latest Developments in Class Action Litigation, GRSM Legal Education Conference, San Francisco, CA, September 2023
    • Latest Developments in Class Action Litigation, GRSM Legal Education Conference, Los Angeles, CA, June 2023
    • “Hot Topics in Employment Litigation,” LeadingAge's Annual Meeting + Expo, October 2022
    • "Sitting in the Litigation Hot Seat - Tips for Navigating Depositions, Mediation and Trial/Arbitration for HR Professionals," Human Resources Association of the Central Coast, May 2020
    • “Class Actions: The Latest Threats and Defenses,” GRSM San Francisco Legal Education Conference, October 2019
    • "One Bad Apple: Navigating through Sexual Battery and other Intentional Torts," Southern California Association for Healthcare Risk Management Breakfast Meeting at The California Club in Los Angeles, August 2019
    • “Becoming a Master Negotiator: Insights into Mediations and ADR,” Bar Association of San Francisco, November 2018
    • “Class Action Litigation - Employers-Brace Yourselves,” GRSM San Francisco Legal Education Conference, October 2018
  • Education

    Education

    J.D., cum laude, Western State University College of Law

    • Editor-in-Chief, Law Review
    • American Jurisprudence Award for the highest grade in Torts I and Trial Practice 

    B.A., Psychology and Social Behavior, University of California at Irvine

    Externships

    Presiding Justice David Sills of the Fourth District California Court of Appeal

    Honors

    Rising Stars® distinction in the field of Employment & Labor and Business Litigation (2013-2014, Law & Politics)

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