O’Hagan Meyer announced the opening of their Orange County California office with employment law veterans Sarah K. Goldstein and Matthew C. Sgnilek and their team of dedicated employment law specialists. The firm expanded into California earlier this year with the opening of a Los Angeles office. These two California offices will serve the firm’s clients in all of Southern California, from the desert areas to San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Orange and Ventura Counties to Santa Barbara.  

Goldstein’s employment law team will work out of both Southern California offices. The firm expanded into California at the request of several clients. Having team members in both offices allows the firm to provide excellent service without additional expense. In addition to Partner Matthew Sgnilek with his expertise in client advising, litigation and wage and hour class action work, Goldstein will be joined by Of Counsel, Ann Piper, Associates Andrea Rosenkranz and Gouya Ranekouhi and paralegal, Rachel Stensen. “It is an honor to join the O’Hagan Meyer firm as a Managing Partner of the Orange County office. I’ve known Kevin O’Hagan for many years through the Professional Liability Underwriting Society (PLUS) and we have always been like-minded about our approach to client service, engaging quick strategies for resolution and our pragmatic litigation tactics. Charlie Meyer and Kevin O’Hagan have created a great place to work and serve our clients.” Goldstein is a current member of the Board of Trustees of PLUS and is the board liaison to the Diversity and Inclusion Committee and Future PLUS, a committee dedicated to the engagement of insurance professionals early in their careers.

“We pride ourselves on our ability to aggressively cut to the chase to bring early resolution to as many cases as we can. We engage counsel early to share facts and information that support our defenses rather than waiting for counsel to hopefully learn they have weakness through the deposition process. We keep track of our case metrics- how many days a case is open and how much we spent in costs and fees to get to case closure and we proactively have shared this information with our clients because we are proud of our results” Goldstein said. Goldstein became a certified mediator in 2009 through her coursework at Pepperdine University School of Law’s Straus Institute of Dispute Resolution. She credits this training as part of her recipe for success. Goldstein said, “I learned so much through the Straus program that I use every day in my litigation and advising practice. The training was invaluable and changed my approach to litigation. On the occasions where a trial or arbitration is needed, O’Hagan Meyer’s reputation for trial expertise is exemplary.”

The team will represent employers in relation to claims of harassment and discrimination, wage and hour violations, retaliation, whistle-blower, wrongful termination, breach of contract, ADA, defamation, negligent hiring and retention claims and other unlawful business practices. They regularly appear before the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, U.S. Department of Labor, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing and state and federal courts from Santa Barbara to San Diego. Both Goldstein and Sgnilek are frequent speakers at local and national events on #MeToo, pay equity, the changing landscape of independent contractor and joint employer liability, trends in emotional distress damages and various other employment related topics.

Goldstein was formerly the Chair of the Labor and Employment Group and Tressler, LLP. Before joining Tressler, Sgnilek practiced employment law at Kutak Rock LLP in Irvine. “I discovered my passion for employment law early in my career and enjoy helping employers. Especially here in Southern California where it seems the cards are always stacked against them,” said Sgnilek. “We are thrilled to have this energized duo of very experienced practitioners and their team join us,” said Kevin O’Hagan.