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Gregory Abrams has devoted his two-decade career to representing and counseling management in all facets of labor and employment law.

Greg focuses his practice on defending employers in their most complex and important litigation, tailoring his approach to each individual client’s definition of “success.” He also advises companies of all sizes in responding to and overcoming challenges involving their most important asset: their people.

Greg’s litigation experience includes defending employers against class and collective actions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and state wage-and-hour laws, Title VII, and other employment laws. Having managed matters involving thousands of potential class members throughout the country, he has successfully defeated class certification, prevailed on the merits, and secured favorable resolutions. He also regularly represents companies in prosecuting and defending trade secrets and restrictive covenants matters. In recent years, Greg has led the defense of multiple companies against class action lawsuits under the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) and has become a prolific speaker and writer on the topic.

In his employment counseling practice, Greg provides day-to-day (and often immediate) guidance on all types of issues, including restrictive covenants, wage-and-hour laws, employee termination, drug and alcohol testing, and criminal background checks. He also prepares severance agreements, employee handbooks, and other employment policies, and manages internal employment investigations. Clients appreciate Greg’s commitment to partner with them to find the best way to advance their objectives while minimizing risk.

Greg routinely presents at CLEs and similar events on a variety of employment and related topics. His writing on employment and privacy-related issues frequently appears in publications such as Reuters (for which he provides a quarterly column), Employment Law 360, and Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. A recognized thought-leader, he has also been interviewed by multiple media outlets, including Bloomberg LawFortuneChicago TribuneCrain’s Chicago BusinessSociety for Human Resource ManagementClass Action Reporter, and Business Insurance. Greg has also served as a contributing author and editor to the annual FLSA Midwinter Report published by the FLSA Subcommittee of the ABA Federal Labor Standards Legislation Committee.

Greg is also committed to pro bono work, which has included representing multiple plaintiffs alleging federal due process violations in connection with Illinois executive clemency proceedings, an applicant for asylum, a Chicago Public Schools student seeking a specially tailored educational curriculum, and an incarcerated individual alleging civil rights violations.

Greg lives in Deerfield, Illinois, where he enjoys spending time with his family, coaching his sons’ baseball teams, and chasing his dog (Wrigley).

Education
The University of Chicago Law School (J.D., 2003)
University of Pennsylvania (B.A. in Economics and Political Science, summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, 2000)
State Admissions
Illinois, 2003
Federal Admissions
United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
United States District Court, Eastern District of Arkansas
United States District Court, District of Colorado
United States District Court, Central District of Illinois
United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois
United States District Court, Southern District of Illinois
United States District Court, Western District of Michigan
United States District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
United States District Court, Western District of Wisconsin
  • Managed more than 30 FLSA collective action and state law wage-and-hour class actions involving alleged “off-the-clock” work, employment misclassification, and other theories in courts throughout the country
  • Represented companies in multiple industries, including finance, manufacturing, and insurance, in pursuing and defending against claims involving alleged restrictive covenant violations and similar theories
  • Defended multiple companies in class actions alleging race discrimination, age discrimination, and invasion of privacy
  • Handled more than a dozen class actions under the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) in Illinois state and federal courts, on behalf of employers and manufacturers
  • Obtained complete jury verdict for the defense in multi-plaintiff race discrimination case in the Northern District of Illinois federal court
  • Supported multiple national employers in developing and revising employment policies for compliance in all states in which they operate

Publications

Speaking Engagements

  • “Compliance in the Age of Privacy: What Your Marketing, HR, and IT Departments Must Know,” Tucker Ellis In-House Counsel Summit (November 2022)
  • Chicago Society for Human Resource Management, Legislative Committee, Employment Law Developments Webinar (November 2022)
  • “The Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) Class Action Litigation: Key Trends and Best Defense Strategies,” The Knowledge Group LLC (October 2022)
  • Chicago Society for Human Resource Management, Legislative Committee on the Illinois Equal Pay Act, Webinar (May 2022)
  • “Charting a New Course: Labor and Employment Under the Biden Administration,” Webinar (December 2021)
  • “Offboarding: Strategies for a Successful Goodbye,” Lorman Education Services, Webinar (August 2021)
  • “Hiring in a Competitive Marketplace – Pay Equity and Beyond,” MRA, Webinar (August 2021)
  • “Employee Discipline for Conduct Outside of Work,” Lorman Education Services, Webinar (January 2021)
  • Minimizing Labor and Employment Litigation in the Coronavirus Pandemic,” Business & Legal Resources (BLR), Webinar (July 2020)
  • “Politics in the Workplace,” Lorman Education Services, Webinar (July 2020)
  • “Litigation on the Horizon,” Indiana Chamber of Commerce 26th Annual Employment Law Seminar, Webinar (June 2020)
  • “Age Discrimination in the Workplace,” Lorman Education Services, Webinar (January 2020)
  • “Everything You Wanted to Know About Drug and Alcohol Testing but Were Afraid to Ask,” Lorman Education Services, Webinar (December 2019)
  • “Biometric Class Action Wave on the Rise,” The Knowledge Group, New York, New York (September 2019)
  • “Hot Topics in Data Privacy for Illinois Companies – BIPA & CCPA,” Game On: Fielding Developments in IP and Labor & Employment, Chicago, Illinois (June 2019)
  • “Biometric Information Class Action Lawsuits – Is Your Company Ready?,” Webinar (April 2019)
  • “Navigating Menacing Waters: Whether Injunctive Class Actions Are a Useful Way to Avoid Class-Certification Hurdles and Avoid Arbitration,” ABA 22nd Annual National Institute on Class Actions, Chicago, Illinois (October 2018)
  • “Employee Arbitration Agreements After Epic Systems,” North Shore Labor Counsel, Chicago, Illinois (October 2018)
  • “Little-Known Laws That Lead to Big Litigation,” Indiana Chamber of Commerce 24th Annual Employment Law Seminar, Indianapolis, Indiana (March 2018)
  • “Understanding and Applying the New City and County Sick Leave Ordinances,” Hospital Employers Seminar (September 2017)
  • “Understanding Serious Health Conditions Under the FMLA,” Lorman Educational Services, Webinar (August 2017)
  • “Fair Labor Standards Act/Wage and Hour Litigation: Recent Developments and Key Topics for Employers,” Indiana Chamber of Commerce, 22nd Annual Employment Law Seminar, Indianapolis, Indiana (March 2016)
  • “Wage & Hour Issues: Compliance in 2015 & Beyond,” Chicago Hospitality Employers Seminar, Chicago, Illinois (September 2015)
  • “The Role of Criminal Records in Hiring: Easy Access, Difficult Decisions,” North Shore Labor & Employment Counsel, Chicago, Illinois (June 2014)

Media

  • Illinois Leading Lawyers Emerging Lawyers, Employment Law (2015-2019)
  • Burton Award for Distinguished Legal Writing (2014)
  • Cabrini Green Legal Aid – Charles V. Hogren Outstanding Service Award (2008)
  • American Bar Association
  • Illinois State Bar Association
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Society for Human Resource Management
  • Cabrini Green Legal Aid, Young Professionals Board, Former Co-Chair
  • Equip for Equality, Young Professionals Board