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Jody I. LeWitter

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Phone: (510) 452-5000 Ext: 307
Fax: (510) 452-5004

1939 Harrison St #307
Oakland, California 94612

SP Lawyer 2020
SP Lawyer 10 years
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  • State Bar of California (1987 to present)
  • State Bar of Michigan (1982, currently inactive)
  • Northern District of California
  • Eastern District of California
  • United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit & Ninth Circuit
  • Eastern District of Michigan
  • Western District of Michigan

Jody I. LeWitter is a partner at Siegel LeWitter Malkani and has been an attorney in private practice for over 35 years. She is passionate about representing employees in discrimination and wrongful termination cases and is known for her vigorous advocacy of employees. She has had great success in court, negotiations/mediations and in arbitrations, and has been recognized as a "go to" employment lawyer for her determination and innovative strategies.

Practice Areas

Jody has represented employees from all walks of life including high level executives, sales managers, corporate executive officers, factory workers, blue collar workers, high tech and white collar employees. She has represented employees in hostile environment/sexual harassment/racial harassment, disability, sex, race, national origin, sexual orientation, age and pregnancy discrimination cases, as well as wrongful termination, breach of contract, misrepresentation or fraud, public policy and other cases. She primarily represents individual employees or small groups of employees.

Jody has a passion for pushing the envelope in litigation. She knows that not all employment discrimination cases involve overt discrimination, and that bringing the more difficult double standard cases is necessary to protect employees’ rights in the workplace. She has used her passion for justice to prove that employees deserve protection from unlawful termination in the guise of layoffs, or firings, when comparative coworkers are not terminated. She has also used her passion for pushing the envelope to advocate for employees in the new area of family responsibilities discrimination, and has parlayed her expertise of sexual harassment in employment law to representing victims of sexual harassment in other contexts, such as protecting student victims of harassment.

Jody is also a Mediator and serves on the Northern District of California’s Employment Law Panel.

Representative Cases and Experience

Jody’s victories include Behne v. Micro Touch, Inc., an employment fraud case in which her client was awarded what was then believed to be the largest employment fraud verdict in California at the time. The $2.64 million dollar award, which included punitive damages, was upheld by the Ninth Circuit. Since then she has become known as a lawyer who will hold corporations accountable to their employees and the public for their actions.

Despite the fact that arbitrations are not considered the friendliest forums for employees, Jody has successfully arbitrated a number of employment cases and convinced arbitrators to make significant awards including rare findings that the employer acted with malice, oppression and fraud, required in order to obtain an award of punitive damages. For example, she represented 3 African American employees in a race discrimination arbitration in which the employees were awarded significant compensatory damages and a finding of malice, oppression and fraud, as required for an award of punitive damages. The total recovery exceeded $3.6 million dollars. She also represented the employee in Miceli v. Flowserve, an age discrimination/retaliation case, in which the Arbitrator awarded compensatory damages of $1.09 million dollars, plus interest and attorney’s fees, and a finding of malice, oppression and fraud.

Jody represented Jose Rossi in his case against the County of Napa, where a jury found the County of Napa fired Assistant District Attorney Rossi in retaliation for his complaints of disability discrimination.

Recognition and Awards
  • Best Lawyers in America, Labor & Employment (2007 to present)
  • California Super Lawyer, Employment Litigation (2007 to present)
  • Lawyer of the Year, Best Lawyers, Northern California, Employment Law – Individuals (2020)
  • Martindale Hubbell AV Rated
  • National Lawyers Guild, Champion of Justice (2016)
  • The Recorder Top Ten Employee Side Practices (2011)
  • Oakland Magazine, Best Lawyers in the East Bay, Labor & Employment (2006)
Professional Activities

Jody has been involved in various legal organizations, including Equal Rights Advocates, California Employment Lawyers Association, Plaintiffs Employment Lawyers Association, the Alameda County Bar Association and the National Lawyers Guild. She has volunteered with the Workers’ Rights Clinic, Legal Aid Society of San Francisco and the Asian Law Caucus, among other organizations. She is a member of the Legal Network for Gender Equity (Times Up).

Jody also volunteers in her community in various capacities. She currently serves on two Boards, the Nicaraguan Children’s Friendship Committee and Amigos de las Americas, San Francisco chapter.

Speaking Engagements & Publications
  • Annual Trial College, California Employment Lawyers Association (approximately biannually)
  • USF Intensive Advocacy Program, Instructor (approximately biannually)
  • Stanford Law School Intensive Advocacy Program, Instructor (approximately biannually)
  • National Institute of Trial Advocacy, Instructor (multiple years)
  • GGU School of Law, Women’s Employment Law Clinic, Wrongful Termination, Guest Lecturer (multiple years)
  • Kurzban’s Immigration Law Sourcebook, Chapter edition, Employment/Labor Right (multiple years)
  • Mock Mediation, California Employment Lawyers Association (2015)
  • Winning Strategies for Discovery & Taking Depositions, Bridgeport Seminars (2015)
  • California Workers’ Rights: 2013 Update, Center for Labor Research & Education (2013)
  • Practical Tips from Seasoned Employment Lawyers: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You, Employment Lawyers Association (2013)
  • Protecting Your Rights in the Workplace, East Bay Women in Science (2013)
  • Claims of Caregiver or Family Responsibilities Discrimination by California Employees, Continuing Education of the Bar (2011)
  • Court Ordered Mediation, University of California Berkeley School of Law (2011)
  • Deposition Techniques in Employment Cases, California Employment Lawyers Association (2008)
  • Representing Employees in Everyday Practice, Contra Costa Bar Association, Employment Law Section (2008)
  • Trial Advocacy: Voir Dire Dos and Don’ts, Northern District of California (2008)
  • Understanding the Psychology of Negotiations, California Employment Lawyers Association (2008)
  • Workplace Privacy, Privacy Compliance & Litigation in California, California Education Bar, Chapter edition (2008)
  • Discovery 101: Conducting Depositions, California Employment Lawyers Association (2006)
  • Leave the Lawyer Perspective Behind: Developing & Presenting Emotional Distress Damages, California Employment Lawyers Association (2005)
  • The Abridged Encyclopedia of Labor & Employment Law for Immigration Practitioner, American Immigration Lawyers Association (2003)
  • Employment Law: Latest Developments, The Recorder (2002)
  • Tell the Truth or Face the Consequences: Misrepresentations in Employment Law, Practicing Law Institute (2001)
  • The Essential Terms of Settlement Agreement, State Bar of California, Labor & Employment Section (1998)
  • Wrongful Termination Practice After Filing, National Lawyers Guild (1989)
Education and Background

Jody was born in Detroit, Michigan. She graduated from Barnard College, Columbia University, magna cum laude. She received her law degree from the University of Michigan Law School, cum laude. She practiced law in Michigan from 1982 through 1986. She moved to California in 1986 where she has practiced employment law ever since.