Financial Services Wage Compliance

Venable LLP maintains an extensive practice representing companies in the financial services sector concerning wage-hour compliance. In response to the growing number of private class actions and Department of Labor enforcement actions alleging violations of the overtime and minimum wage laws, we have pooled the experience of our employment and financial services attorneys to address this issue affecting the financial services industry. Venable attorneys have also successfully defended brokers, banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions in wage-hour class actions, compliance audits, and enforcement actions. 

Drawing on our significant experience representing clients on these matters, we can utilize proven strategies to allow clients to maintain their business model and compensation structures while becoming compliant with the wage-hour laws, and reducing exposure for past violations. Having successfully counseled clients in avoiding lawsuits and audits, and having defended them for past claims of violations, Venable attorneys are able to provide protections for these institutions while maintaining and strengthening the business models that make them successful.

Venable's strategy focuses on: 

Understanding the Business Structure

Ensuring compliance with wage-hour laws is not difficult. The challenge is doing so without disrupting the business model or interfering with a business' profit-driven goals. Venable attorneys who have represented financial services clients and who understand their demands and challenges will meet with clients to understand their unique structure. Venable attorneys will then provide advice on how to maintain the structure, solidify the business' goals, and integrate policies and practices to protect clients from lawsuits and claims for wage-hour violations. 


A key aspect of our approach is reviewing and tailoring financial services employment and independent contractor agreements, for compliance with banking and labor laws and regulations, which often conflict. Furthermore, our contract review and revision helps protect employers against claims and lawsuits from employees. Venable-drafted agreements have been tested in a variety of settings, courts, and agencies, and can increase employers' protections consistent with their existing business structures. 

Job Descriptions

Another aspect of our approach has been the development of job descriptions in tandem with clients' contracts to support the strategies implemented for employers. Venable attorneys will review clients' existing job descriptions and revise them if necessary to work in conjunction with their agreements. 

Employee Handbooks

Employee handbooks can be a best friend or worst enemy. Venable attorneys will review, revise, and, where necessary, provide handbooks tailored to financial services clients that are designed to be consistent with both contractual agreements and job descriptions. Furthermore, they will include appropriate laws, policies, and procedures in the handbook without undermining the company culture and while minimizing the size and scope of the handbook. In general, Venable will provide clients with a handbook that gives them control, guidance, and flexibility tailored specifically to their business structure. 

Training and Counseling

The final step in protecting our clients is giving them and their management an understanding of not only our strategy but the rationale behind it. Through this training, clients should have an educated management that understands how to implement the strategy. Our goal is to create self-reliant clients who are protected not only through contracts, descriptions, and handbooks, but also through the knowledge we impart to them in connection with our representation. 

Litigation and Audit Defense 

For those businesses that are facing claims or audits, Venable attorneys provide a zealous defense. Venable has an experienced team of litigators who have defended a number of financial institutions against allegations of violating various wage-hour laws brought by both the government and private litigants. 

Practice Focus

  • Arbitrations
  • Audits
  • Class actions
  • Collective bargaining
  • Diversity / affirmative action
  • EEO / Harassment claims
  • Employee benefits
  • Employment agreements
  • Employment disputes
  • ERISA compliance
  • Financial services wage compliance
  • Government contracts
  • Intellectual property litigation
  • Immigration sanctions
  • Labor cost reductions in mergers & acquisitions, bankruptcy, and healthcare
  • Litigation
  • NLRB, union campaigns and ULPs
  • OSHA
  • Personnel policies
  • Trade secrets / Non-competes
  • Wage and overtime claims
  • WARN Act compliance
  • Whistleblower 

Industry Focus

  • California
  • Colleges and universities
  • Construction
  • Energy
  • Entertainment / Media
  • Financial services
  • Government contracting
  • Healthcare
  • Hospitality
  • Independent schools
  • Information technology
  • Manufacturing
  • Nonprofits / Trade associations
  • Public employers
  • Retail
  • Telecommunications
  • Transportation

Honors and Awards

  • Attorneys with top rankings by
    • Chambers USA
    • Best Lawyers in America