Overview

Tracey A. Kennedy is a partner in the Labor and Employment Practice Group in the firm's Los Angeles office.

Areas of Practice

Tracey is a trial attorney responsible for all aspects of employment litigation matters on behalf of employers and management, including jury and bench trials and arbitrations. An experienced trial attorney, she has tried to verdict in state and federal court employment matters such as age, race, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, and disability discrimination, as well as harassment, retaliation, and wrongful termination claims. Tracey has also tried to verdict three wage and hour class actions. 

Tracey is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers and a Member of ABOTA.

Tracey has lectured around the country on personnel practices, employment discrimination, retaliation, harassment, and wrongful termination.

Tracey provides preventive counseling to clients concerning personnel and employment matters.

Experience

Experience

June 1989 - Jury Trial (14 days)
Court:  Riverside County Superior Court (Hon. Hanks)
Case:  Misdemeanor Possession
Role:  First Chair Prosecutor (certified law clerk)
Verdict:  Guilty

March 1991 - Bench Trial (5 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Dzintra Janavs)
Case:  Breach of Construction Contract and Settlement Agreement
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

November 1993 - Jury Trial (14 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Bernard Kaufman)
Case:  Wrongful Termination and Retaliation
Role:  Second Chair
Verdict:  Hung Jury

May 1996 - Jury Trial (14 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Valerie Baker)
Case:  Race Discrimination and Breach of Contract (27 year employee)
Role:  Second Chair
Verdict:  Defense as to Race Discrimination; Plaintiff as to Breach of Contract

August 1996 - Jury Trial (14 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Judith Chirlin)
Case:  Race Discrimination and Breach of Contract
Role:  Second Chair
Verdict:  Defense as to Race Discrimination; Plaintiff Verdict as to  Breach of Contract

April 1998 - Jury Trial (25 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Alexander Williams)
Case:  Wrongful Termination, Violation of Fair Credit Reporting Act, Retaliation, and Race Discrimination
Role:  Second Chair
Verdict:  Plaintiff as to Wrongful Termination and Violation of FCRA;
Defense as to Discrimination and Retaliation

August 1998 - Jury Trial (7 days)
Court:  United States District Court, Central District (Hon. Audrey Collins)
Case:  Age Discrimination (Three plaintiffs)
Role:  Co-Counsel
Verdict:  Defense (as to all plaintiffs)

October 1998 - Jury Trial (4 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Richard Kalustian)
Case:  Sexual Harassment and Retaliation
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Plaintiff (verdict was less than half of settlement offer)

February 1999 - Jury Trial (8 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. James Dunn)
Case:  Age Discrimination and Breach of Contract
Role:  Co-Counsel
Verdict:  Defense

June 1999 - Jury Trial (14 days)
Court:  Tulare County Superior Court (Hon. Patrick O'Hara)
Case:  Race and Age Discrimination and Breach of Contract
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

November 1999 - Jury Trial (7 days)
Court:  United States District Court, Central District (Hon. William Rea)
Case:  Race Discrimination and Retaliation
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

January 2000 - Bench Trial (6 days)
Court:  United States District Court, Central District (Hon. Laughflin Waters)
Case:  Race and National Origin Discrimination, Race and National Origin Harassment and  Retaliation
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

March 2000 - Bench Trial (5 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Joseph R. Kalin)
Case:  Breach of Written Employment Contract for Chief Financial Officer
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Plaintiff (fraud claims and individuals dismissed before trial)

September 2000 - Jury Trial (5 days)
Court:  Los Angeles Superior Court (Hon. Coleman Swart)
Case:  Breach of Implied Contract and Age and Sex Discrimination
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

August 2001 - Bench Trial (4 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. James L. Wright)
Case:  Medical Condition and Disability Discrimination and Overtime Pay
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

November 2002 - Jury Trial (10 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Ralph Dau)
Case:  Race Retaliation (three plaintiffs)
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense Verdict as to two Plaintiffs; Plaintiff Verdict as to retaliation in violation of public policy for one Plaintiff.

March 2003 - Jury Trial (10 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Alan Buckner)
Case:  Retaliation, Age Association Discrimination, Medical Condition Association Discrimination, Breach of Contract
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Plaintiff Verdict as to Retaliation and Breach of Contract; Defense Verdict as to all other claims.

August 2003 - Jury Trial (10 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Paul Gutman)
Case:  Age and Gender Harassment, Age and Gender Discrimination, Unequal Pay (Gender Based), Failure to Promote, Breach of Contract
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Plaintiff Verdict on gender harassment; Defense Verdict as to all other claims

September 2005 - Jury Trial (25 days)
Court:  San Bernardino County Superior Court (Hon. Ben Kayashima)
Case:  Disability Discrimination, Violation of the California Family Rights Act, Breach of Contract
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

January 2006 - Jury Trial (19 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Victor Persón)
Case:  Retaliation (Violation of Labor Code § 1102.5)
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

May 2008 - Jury Trial (24 days)
Court:  Orange County Superior Court (Hon. Peter Polos)
Case:  Gender Discrimination and Harassment, Retaliation, Loss of Consortium
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

July 2008 - Bench Trial (1 day)
Court:  Los Angeles Superior Court (Hon. Louis Lavin)
Case:  Wage Penalties
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Defense

August 2008 - Bench Trial (9 days)
Court:  Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Susan Bryant-Deason)
Case:  National Origin Discrimination and Harassment
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict:  Settlement (during trial)

March 2009 - Jury Trial (8 days)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Zaven Sinanian)
Case: Pregnancy Discrimination, Pregnancy Harassment and Retaliation
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

August 2009 - Bench Trial (8 days)
Court: Orange County Superior Court (Hon. Richard Luesebrink)
Case: Disability Discrimination, Harassment, Retaliation, Failure to Accommodate
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

September 2009 - Bench Trial (10 days) (Class Action)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. William MacLaughflin)
Case: Wage and Hour Class Action (Executive Exemption) (Business & Professions Code § 17200)
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

December 2009 - Jury Trial (8 days)
Court: Orange County Superior Court (Hon. Franz Miller)
Case: Overtime (Exemption) and Meal/Rest Period
Role: Co-Lead Counsel
Verdict: Defense

February 2010 - Jury Trial (10 days)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Ronald Sohigian)
Case: Disability discrimination
Role:  Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Plaintiff - New trial granted

August 2010 - Jury Trial (10 days)
Court: Santa Rosa County Superior Court (Hon. Mark Tansil)
Role: Co-Lead Trial Attorney
Case: Sexual Harassment and Retaliation
Verdict: Plaintiff

October 2010 - Jury Trial (10 days)
Court: San Francisco Superior Court (Hon. Charlene P. Kiesselbach)
Case:  Wrongful Termination and Reimbursement (Labor Code section 2802)
Role: Co-Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

March 2011 - Jury Trial (15 days)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. David Milton)
Case: Civil Stalking, Wrongful Termination, Sexual Harassment, Gender Discrimination
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Plaintiff

October 2011 - Jury Trial (6 days)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Louis Meisinger)
Case: Retaliation, Wrongful Termination, Failure to Prevent Retaliation
Role: Co-Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

December 2011 - Jury Trial (25 days) 
Court: Los Angeles Superior Court (Hon. Abraham Khan) 
Case: CFRA Harassment Discrimination and Retaliation
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Plaintiff Verdict: Retaliation, Negligence
Defense Verdict: Harassment, Kin Care, Associational Discrimination, Punitive Damages (settled on appeal)

April 2012 - Bench Trial (10 days) (Class Action)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. David Minning)
Case: Wage and Hour Class Action (tip pool) (Business & Professions Code § 17200)
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

October 2012 - Bench Trial (5 days)
Court: Orange County Superior Court (Hon. Ronald Bauer)
Case: Wrongful Termination and Blacklisting
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

December 2012 - Jury Trial (9 days)
Court: Santa Barbara County Superior Court (Hon. Donna Geck)
Case: Sexual Harassment Retaliation, Wrongful Demotion and Termination
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

February 2013 - Jury Trial (5 days)
Court: Southern District Texas (Hon. Vanessa Gilmore)
Case: ADEA and TCHRA (age)
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Plaintiff

March 2013 - Jury Trial (19 days)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Abraham Khan)
Case: Age and National Origin Discrimination, Defamation, and Retaliation
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Plaintiff (3 claims); Defense (2 claims and punitive damages)

February 2014 - Jury Trial (21 days)
Court: Alameda County Superior Court (Hon. Robert McGuiness)
Case: Age Harassment, Age Discrimination, Retaliation, Failure to Prevent (three defendants)
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

September 2015 - Arbitration (7 days)
Arbitration: Los Angeles (Hon. Enrique Romero)
Case: Sexual Harassment, Retaliation, Bane Act, Wrongful Termination by former employee (complaint), and wrongful termination and indemnification by former supervisor (cross-complaint)
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense (all claims as to Claimant and Cross-Claimant)

January 2016 – Jury Trial (12 days)
Court: Los Angeles (Hon. Michael Johnson)
Case: Sexual Harassment, Retaliation and Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Plaintiff

March 2016 – Jury Trial (19 days) (Class Action)
Court: Eastern District of California (Hon. Stanley Boone)
Case: Class Action – Wage and Hour (Meal Period, rest breaks, premium payments, waiting time penalties, PAGA penalties) (Three certified classes of 29,500 current and former employees)
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense as to all claims but meal premium pay ($495,000), defense as to all PAGA penalties

May 2016 – Jury Trial (6 days)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Victor E. Chavez)
Case: Sexual, Race and Sexual orientation Harassment and Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

October 2013 – August 2016 Arbitration (50 days)
FINRA arbitration (New York)
Case: Representing claimant company for Breach of Fiduciary Duty, Breach of Contract, Breach of Loyalty Interference with Contract
Role: Third Chair
Verdict: Claimant

September 2017 – Arbitration (2 Days)
AAA: James Adler
Case: Disability Discrimination, Failure to Accommodate, Failure to Engage in Interactive Process, Retaliation, and Wrongful Termination
Role: Lead Attorney
Verdict: Defense

November 2017 – Jury Trial (12 Days)
Court: Orange County Superior Court (Hon. Derek Hunt)
Case: Gender Discrimination, Retaliation, Failure to Accommodate, Failure to Engage in Interactive Process, Disability Discrimination
Role: Lead Trial Attorney
Verdict: Defense

April 2018 - Jury Trial (7 Days)
Court: Los Angeles County Superior Court (Hon. Gregory Alarcon)
Case: Disability Discrimination, Retaliation
Role: Lead Trial Attorney 
Verdict: Plaintiff as to retaliation ($42,000) Defense as to all other claims

Reported Cases

Cloud v. Northrop Grumman, 67 Cal. App. 4th 995 (1998)

Louie Lu v. Hawaiian Gardens Casino, 50 Cal. 4th 592 (2010)

Honors

Honors

Best Lawyer in America, Best Lawyers, 2020

American College of Trial Lawyers, 2016

Client Service All-Star, The BTI Consulting Group, 2018

Top Labor & Employment Lawyer, Daily Journal, 2010, 2012-2018

Most Influential Women Lawyers in Los Angeles, Los Angeles Business Journal, 2017

Most Influential Minority Lawyers in Los Angeles, Los Angeles Business Journal, 2016

Most Powerful Employment Lawyers, Lawdragon, 2016-2019

Labor and Employment Star – California, Benchmark Litigation, 2015-2020

World Class Employment Lawyer, Lawdragon, 2014

Recognized as a Leading Employment Lawyer in USA, 11th edition PLC Employment Multijurisdictional Guide, 2012

Top Women Lawyer/Litigator, Daily Journal, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017

Named one of The Nation's Most Powerful Employment Attorneys, Human Resource Executive, 2011, 2015-2019

Southern California Super Lawyer, Super Lawyers, 2009-2020

Top Labor & Employment Lawyer, Chambers & Partners, 2009-2019

Recognized, Labor & Employment Litigation, Legal 500, 2011-2014, 2017-2019

Top Ten Employment Defense Attorney, Daily Journal, 2009

Insights

Media Mentions

Speaking Engagements

  • Ms. Kennedy has lectured state wide on personnel practices, employment discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, unfair business practices, and trial practice and techniques.
  • Featured Legal Commentator, 2009-2015 National Association of Health Care Recruiters

Memberships

Memberships

Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers

Member, Association of Southern California Defense Counsel

Member, American Board of Trial Advocates

American Trial Lawyers Association

Litigation Counsel of America

Former Member of the Executive Committee, Labor & Employment Law Section, Los Angeles County Bar Association

Former Chair and Co-Chair, Barristers Sports Project Committee

Former Member, Barristers Executive Committee

Former Co-Chair, Barristers South Central Legal Services Committee

Former Associate Editor, California Labor and Employment Law Quarterly

Former Executive Committee Member, Labor and Employment Law Section, Beverly Hills Bar Association

Education

J.D., University of Texas at Austin, 1990

B.A., University of Texas, 1987

Admissions

  • California
  • New York
  • Texas
  • Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Central, Northern, Southern and Eastern Districts of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern and Southern Districts of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York
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