Debra Fischer is chair of the firm’s Labor and Employment Practice Group and firm administrative partner. She also is the chair of the firm’s Committee on Associates, a member of the Management Committee and National Pro Bono Committee.
Debra has practiced employment law for more than 20 years, successfully trying cases in both California state and federal courts. She has experience in arbitrations, and her appellate work consists of briefing and arguing cases in state and federal courts of appeal, including briefing in the U.S. Supreme Court. She has defended clients in a wide variety of employment matters, including sexual harassment and wrongful termination suits; claims of race, sex, disability, pregnancy, age and sexual orientation discrimination; and assault, battery, invasion of privacy, defamation, fraud and false imprisonment allegations. Debra advises on trade secret and unfair competition issues that arise when employees change employment. In addition, she defends clients against wage and hour class actions and Section 17200 claims. She is often called upon to handle employment disputes with high-level executives and other highly confidential matters.
Debra regularly counsels employers in all aspects of employment law compliance and risk avoidance, including restructurings and downsizing; drafting personnel policies and employment agreements; conducting internal investigations; providing educational seminars to management and employees in all areas of employment law, including sexual harassment and other forms of discrimination; hiring and terminating employees; giving performance reviews; and understanding federal, state and local employment statutes and ordinances.
Debra represents local emerging companies as well as national and international corporations. She has particular experience in the financial services area, regularly representing accounting firms, broker-dealers, insurance companies, private equity firms, mortgage companies and other financial institutions.
Debra hopes women will continue to emerge as leaders in the legal profession, thus enhancing their ability to practice law as well as providing more diverse representation to clients. She also has a personal interest in helping women and children locally and globally. She has provided pro bono assistance to parents of children seeking to obtain better and more comprehensive health education in the public schools and currently serves on the board of the Forgotten International (a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing programs to alleviate poverty, particularly for women and children).