Attorney Kate Rigby has devoted her entire legal career to representing employers in life sciences, technology, hospitality, and other industries in a broad spectrum of employment issues and disputes. Life sciences companies view Kate as their “go to” advisor, helping them confront employment law issues as they emerge from startups to growing enterprises.
Kate understands the unique challenges life sciences companies face with respect to talent acquisition and retention, protection of confidential information, incentive compensation structures, and performance management, among other issues. Kate helps clients ensure compliance with federal and state employment laws. Clients seek her practical counseling on all areas of human resources, including discipline and termination, hiring, reductions in force, EEO complaints, accommodation of disabilities and leaves of absence, wage and hour issues, employment agreements, restrictive covenants, handbooks, and policies. She regularly litigates employment and wage and hour claims before state and federal courts and agencies.
Employers also benefit from Kate’s significant experience handling investigations of internal employee complaints and providing employee and management training. Kate regularly conducts management and non-management equal employment and diversity/inclusion training courses for clients and has completed all MCAD-Certified Train-the-Trainer Courses.
Prior to joining Epstein Becker Green, Kate was a Shareholder of an international law firm, where she focused on labor and employment law, and co-chaired its Life Sciences practice group. Before becoming an attorney, Kate worked in the human resources field in recruiter, generalist, and management positions.
- Regularly defends employers in employment discrimination and retaliation cases in state and federal court and has obtained summary judgment in cases involving sexual harassment, retaliation, assault and battery, and age, disability, race, national origin, and gender discrimination.
- Obtained an arbitration award regarding claims of gender discrimination and harassment, retaliation, intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, and breach of contract.
Wage and Hour Litigation
- Defended and obtained favorable results for employers in state and federal courts involving Massachusetts wage and hour laws relating to alleged unpaid commissions and incentive payments, vacation pay, tip pooling, service charges, meal breaks, overtime, and minimum wage claims.
- Obtained summary judgment in a case involving claims of alleged unpaid commission payments pursuant to the Massachusetts wage and hour statutes and claims of breach of contract.
State and Federal Agencies
- Regularly represents employers before the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Kate obtained favorable results defending clients in matters involving retaliation charges, sexual harassment charges, and age, race, national origin, gender, and disability discrimination charges.
- Represent employers before the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office in response to individual and group wage and hour complaints.
- Conducted numerous training courses for management and non-management employees, including, but not limited to, the following state and federal topics:
- Family, medical, disability, and paid sick leave laws;
- Disability, pregnancy, and religious accommodation;
- Prevention of and response to claims of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation;
- Wage and hour laws;
- Investigation of internal complaints;
- Documentation of disciplinary issues; and
- Confidentiality and restrictive covenant issues.
- Completed all MCAD-Certified Train-the-Trainer Courses, including:
- Preventing Discrimination in the Workplace,
- Preventing Harassment in the Workplace,
- Responding to Accommodation Requests, and
- Conducting Internal Discrimination Complaint Investigations.
- Counsels employers on all human resource issues, such as incentive compensation and other wage and hour issues, employment agreements (including confidentiality agreements and restrictive covenants), handbooks and policies, hiring new employees, employee discipline and terminations, reductions in force, conducting internal investigations, engaging in the interactive process required under state and federal disability laws, and complying with other federal and state employment laws.
Restrictive Covenant Matters
- Successfully represented employers and individuals involving restrictive covenants disputes and litigation.
- Wake Forest University School of Law (J.D., 2005)
- The University of Texas at Austin (B.A., high honors, 1998)
- North Carolina
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
- U.S. District Court, District of Massachusetts
- U.S. District Court, Eastern District of North Carolina
- U.S. District Court, Middle District of North Carolina
- U.S. District Court, Western District of North Carolina
Professional & Community Involvement
- Boston Bar Association, Labor & Employment Steering Committee (2021 to Present)
- Massachusetts Women's Bar Association
- Mecklenburg County Bar Association
- North Carolina Bar Association (Employment Law Section)
- Northeast Human Resources Association (NEHRA)
- Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)
Spilling Secrets Podcast Series
Kate is a co-host of Spilling Secrets, a podcast series on the future of trade secrets and non-compete law. Each episode features an all-star panel of attorneys talking about real-life problems, developments, and strategies when dealing with trade secrets, non-competes, and other types of restrictive covenants.
- May 12, 2022
- April 5, 2022
- Nonprofit Law Conference 2020: Nonprofit Employment ConsiderationsMay 22, 2020