Garry G. Mathiason

Garry G. Mathiason


Recognized since 2006

San Francisco, California

Practice Areas

Employment Law - Management

Labor Law - Management

Litigation - Labor and Employment

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Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2021 - Employment Law - Management
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Garry is a senior class action litigator and strategist at Littler Mendelson, resident in the San Francisco office. He has personally supervised the firm's attorneys on more than 1,000 employment and labor litigation matters and currently defends employers in complex wage and hour, and discrimination class action cases. He also represents clients before the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), in arbitration, mediation, and collective bargaining and offers advice on:

  • Class action avoidance, litigation and defense
  • Traditional labor law and NLRB issues
  • Discrimination issues
  • Traditional labor law and NLRB issues
  • Wellness issues
  • Independent contractor issues
  • Contingent workforce issues
  • Robotics employment law issues
  • Employment law training and compliance

    Garry co-chairs Littler's Robotics Practice Group, providing legal advice and representation to the legal industry, as well as employers deploying this technology in the workplace. He also oversees the Littler Corporate Compliance and Ethics Practice Group and originated the Contingent Workforce Practice Group. He is a founder of and serves on the board of NAVEX Global, the ethics and compliance experts. The legal technology compliance Company provides superior legal compliance solutions through an array of GRC products and services. With more than 8,000 corporate clients in over 200 countries and 75% of the Fortune 100 companies, NAVEX Global represents the largest ethics and compliance community in the world. Over the course of his career, Garry has argued before the United States Supreme Court, the California Supreme Court, and other district, superior, circuit and appellate courts. He also practices before the National Labor Relations Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the California Labor Commissioner, and the California Public Employment Relations Board.

    Garry is a pioneer in the area of arbitration agreements and alternative dispute resolution, addressing the changing legal requirements, enforceability of class action waivers, and the practical challenges and advantages of various ADR programs. He created model alternative dispute resolution (ADR) programs including class action waivers and worked with Harvard and NYU law professor, Arthur R. Miller, to create a video-training program on ADR.

    Based on his litigation experience and a career-long effort to translate employment and labor law issues, and developments into practicable and learnable modules for human resource professionals, Garry has originated several of Littler's preventive employment law programs and structures in-house employment law training programs. He regularly delivers presentations before individual corporations, bar associations, national and local human resources groups, and other professional organizations.

    Garry has drafted model legislation on workplace violence. He has given scores of presentations on workplace violence prevention and has appeared prominently in national and international media on this and other employment law topics.

    Widely recognized as one of the leading authorities on employment law trends in the United States, Garry has written over 100 articles and given several hundred presentations on the future of employment law. He serves as chair of the Open Compliance and Ethics Group's (OCEG) Employment and Labor Law Domain. In this capacity, he writes legal requirements and guidelines for business. He also spoke at the public presentation of the Employment Law Domain of OCEG. Throughout his career, he has researched, addressed and written extensively on ways in which business leaders can build ethical organizations and best ensure compliance with employment and labor law.

    Garry also counsels employers on regulatory compliance as it involves planning for natural and manmade disasters in the workplace. He has given more than a dozen presentations on national standards for crisis management, emergency preparedness and has participated in Crisis Management International, Inc. webinars. He leads the firm's program to help employers prepare the workplace for unexpected events.

    As a result of Garry's early leadership role in the Fulcrum Class Action Litigation Summits, which were among the best presentations on the latest developments in class action law, Littler has undertaken the defense of more than 1000 employment law class actions. Garry currently serves as lead counsel in more than 10 of these actions and has made multiple presentations on new complex defense strategies for many national organizations and individual clients.

    Garry’s extensive experience, includes working with companies in the following industries:

    • High tech
    • Financial services
    • Construction
    • Airline
    • Fitness
    • Retail
    • Staffing
    • School districts

      Garry is Immediate Past Chair and Former Name Partner of Littler. He commenced his legal career with the National Labor Relations Board in San Francisco, where he developed a thorough foundation in the fundamentals of traditional labor law. His tenure with the NLRB included three major trials, more than 20 representation cases, and a contempt enforcement action in the appeals court. In law school, he was a member of the Board of Editors and served on the Stanford Law Review.

  • 101 Second Street
    Suite 1000
    San Francisco, CA 94105
  • Stanford University, J.D.
Bar Admissions
  • California, The State Bar of California
  • American Bar Association - Member
  • American Bar Foundation - Member
  • Bar Association of San Francisco - Member
  • Bar Association of the Fifth Federal Circuit - Member
  • Board of Directors - National Association for Urban Debate Leagues - Member
  • Santa Clara County Bar Association - Member

Headquarters: San Francisco, California

234 The Best Lawyers in America® awards

192 Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch® in America awards

Best Law Firms Badge Visit Website View Firm Profile

Lawyer of the Year Badge - 2021 - Employment Law - Management
Named "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers® for:
  • Employment Law - Management, San Francisco (2021)
Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® 2024 for work in:
  • Employment Law - Management
  • Labor Law - Management
  • Litigation - Labor and Employment
Special Focus:
  • Arbitration and Mediation
  • Civil Rights
  • Class Actions
  • Defense
  • Discrimination
  • Harassment
  • Litigation
  • Management
  • National Labor Relations Board
  • Wage-Hour Law
  • Whistleblowers
  • White-Collar Criminal Defense
  • Workplace Violence
  • Recipient, Merit Award - Northwestern Alumni Association, 2013
  • Named, 25 Most Powerful People in Staffing - Staffing Industry Review, 2010
  • Named, Top Labor and Employment Attorney - San Francisco Daily Journal, 2011
  • Named, Top Labor and Employment Attorney - Los Angeles Daily Journal, 2011
  • Named, 500 Leading Lawyers in America - Lawdragon, 2011
  • Named, Management Labour and Employment - Who’s Who Legal, 2010 and 2011
  • Named, Nation's Most Powerful Employment Attorneys, Human Resource Executive Magazine, 2008-2011
  • Named, International Who's Who of Management Labour and Employment Lawyers - Who's Who Legal, 2012-2014
  • Fellow, College of Labor and Employment Lawyers
  • Named, 100 Most Influential Attorneys in the Nation - National Law Journal
  • Named, Nation’s Most Powerful Employment Attorney - Hall of Fame, Human Resources Executive, 2013
  • Named, America’s Leading Lawyers for Business - Chambers USA, 2009-2012
  • Named, America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Band 1 - Chambers USA, 2013
  • Named, Who's Who in American Law, 2014
Additional Areas of Practice:
  • Corporate Compliance Law
  • Corporate Governance Law

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