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> Employment & Labor Law    > Business Litigation    > Wills, Trusts, & Estate Litigation    > Ethics Practice

Employment & Labor Law
Jill routinely defends employers against claims of discrimination under the Connecticut Fair Employment Practices Act (CFEPA), Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, claims of violations of the Family and Medical Leave Act, Sexual Harassment claims, and Civil Rights claims under Section 1981. Jill's employment practice also includes her successful defense of employers against claims of: wrongful termination, breach of an implied contract, whistle-blowing, defamation, retaliation under the Workers Compensation Act, violation of First Amendment rights and negligent hiring or supervision. Jill also routinely represents the interests of management in connection with claims under wage and hour laws, grievances, arbitrations, mediations, collective bargaining and workplace safety issues including those arising under OSHA. Jill's employment practice also includes advising her clients in an effort to ensure their compliance with labor and employment laws and in order to deter lawsuits. Jill trains and counsels her clients on compliance with wage and hour laws and appropriate classifications with regard to employee or independent contractor status and exempt and non-exempt employees for purposes of overtime. Jill's employment representation frequently requires her to prepare or update her clients' employee handbooks and policies and to draft appropriate non-compete, confidentiality and severance agreements on the employer's behalf. Recent victories on behalf of Jill's employment clients include the federal court's entry of summary judgment for the defendant on the plaintiff's race based claims of discrimination and retaliation.

A significant portion of Jill's practice has also been devoted to representing employers in disputes regarding the enforceability of non-compete agreements including obtaining and opposing requests for temporary and permanent injunctive relief. In addition to litigating the enforceability of non-compete agreements and other restrictive covenants, Attorney Hartley has extensive experience with regard to the other types of claims that typically accompany such employment disputes including claims of misappropriation of "trade secrets", breach of fiduciary duty, and claims that the misappropriation of a trade secret was a computer related offense and/or an unfair trade practice in violation of the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act. For instance, she recently obtained judgment for the defendants in favor of a national mortgage lender and its seven loan originators on the plaintiff's lawsuit for misappropriation of trade secrets, violation of CUTPA and breach of fiduciary duty in which plaintiff sought in excess of $5,000,000.00 in claimed damages. For a review of this favorable, take-nothing judgment in favor of Jill's clients, click on to the Court's decision under Related Links.

Business Litigation
With regard to her commercial litigation practice, Jill has and continues to litigate a wide range of business matters and disputes involving businesses including:

  • Contractual and quasi-contractual claims
  • Breach of fiduciary duty claims
  • Unfair competition claims including those brought under the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA)
  • Business torts such as tortious interference with a business or contractual relationship
  • Fraud, conversion and statutory theft claims
  • Claims of computer crimes and computer related offenses
  • Privacy issues
  • Broker/dealer issues
  • Corporate and partnership issues, including dissolution, a winding up of the company's affairs and the appointment of a temporary receiver
  • Real estate disputes
  • Franchisor/franchisee issues
  • Construction
  • Landlord/tenant disputes
  • Defense of Fair Credit Reporting and Fair Debt Collection Practices Claims
  • Defense of Claims For Violation of State and Federal Fair Housing Laws

Wills, Trusts, & Estate Litigation
Jill's litigation practice includes her zealous representation of individuals, businesses and charitable institutions with regard to an array of trust and estate matters and claims in probate, state and federal courts including: will contests; claims of undue influence; a lack of testamentary capacity; the imposition of a constructive trust; and the removal of fiduciaries of an estate.

Ethics Practice
Jill's practice includes her representation of both claimants and respondents in a variety of state and municipal agency proceedings with regard to state and municipal codes of ethics. Jill's experience with regard to ethics matters has included her service as Special Counsel to the Connecticut State Ethics Commission. In this capacity, she was responsible for investigating and prosecuting complaints arising from alleged contingent fee agency lobbying. Jill was instrumental in securing for the State Ethics Commission a settlement of those matters constituting approximately $1.9 million in forfeited finder's fees after the completion of a protracted probable cause hearing. For more detail, see the write-up in the Connecticut Law Tribune by clicking on the Related Links page.

Jill's ethics experience also includes her appearance before the State Ethics Commission and municipal ethics boards on behalf of respondents charged with violation of revolving door provisions and/or other unethical conduct. Subsequent to her role as Special Counsel to the Connecticut State Ethics Commission, Jill was appointed and retained as Special Enforcement Counsel for the Office of State Ethics to prosecute its complaint against a lobbyist/respondent before the Citizen's Ethics Advisory Board (involving claims of gift and meal violations) although this matter was resolved prior to hearing. In this role as Special Enforcement Counsel, Jill also investigated and made a finding of probable cause with regard to political campaign contributions made by a member of the Ethics Advisory Board in violation of the applicable Code of Ethics for Public Officials. For more information about this matter, click on the Article in the Hartford Courant, under the Related Links page.

Jill's ethics work also includes her service, since 2007, as a Commissioner of the Ethics Commission for The Mohegan Tribe of Indians of Connecticut (the "Tribe"). Jill's role as an ethics commissioner includes investigating claims of a violation of the Mohegan Tribal Ethics Ordinance, conducting hearings with regard to same, making determinations as to whether a violation has occurred, drafting decisions and the issuance of sanctions and fines for any such violations. Jill has also had the privilege of serving the Mohegan Tribe's Freedom of Information Commission).