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San Diego Employment Attorney


With over 20 years of combined experience, the employment law attorneys at Nevels Nichols, LLP have been staunch advocates for employees and employers in San Diego and throughout California. Our team has an extensive track record of success in high-stakes employment litigation and negotiations. We understand the nuances of California's complex labor laws and leverage our expertise to protect the rights of our clients. Whether you are an employee who has experienced an injustice or an employer facing a claim, Nevels Nichols has the skill and determination to vigorously represent your interests.

Why Choose Our Experienced San Diego Employment Attorneys

When navigating employment disputes, it is critical to have a skilled legal team on your side. At Nevels Nichols, we offer a combination of advantages that set us apart:

Extensive Experience

With over 20 years of combined experience in employment law, we have an unparalleled understanding of the ever-evolving regulations and case law surrounding workplace issues.

Personalized Attention

We take the time to truly understand your unique situation and tailor our approach to achieve the best possible resolution aligned with your goals.

Aggressive Representation

Our lawyers are relentless advocates, prepared to fiercely protect your rights and interests inside and outside of the courtroom.

Stellar Reputation

Nevels Nichols has earned a reputation for professionalism, integrity, and excellence throughout the legal community.

What Are Your Rights as a Worker in California?

California has some of the most comprehensive and employee-friendly labor laws in the nation. As an employee in the state, you have rights that employers must respect, including:

  • The right to a workplace free from discrimination, harassment, and retaliation based on protected characteristics.
  • The right to reasonable accommodations for disabilities or religious practices.
  • The right to take job-protected leave for qualified medical reasons, pregnancy, or caregiving responsibilities.
  • The right to receive minimum wage and overtime pay in accordance with state and federal laws.
  • The right to take meal and rest breaks as mandated.
  • The right to a safe working environment adhering to OSHA standards.

Violating these fundamental rights can expose employers to significant liability. If you suspect your workplace rights have been violated, consulting an experienced employment lawyer is critical to understanding your legal options.

Why Someone Would Need an Employment Lawyer

Employment relationships can become adversarial when disagreements arise over workplace policies, compensation, termination, or other issues. An experienced employment lawyer can provide invaluable assistance in various situations, including:

  • You were fired or forced to resign under questionable circumstances.
  • You experienced discrimination, harassment, or retaliation based on a protected characteristic.
  • Your employer misclassified you as an independent contractor to avoid providing benefits.
  • You were denied legally-entitled wages, including minimum wage or overtime pay.
  • Your employer failed to accommodate a disability or religious practice.
  • You were denied rightful leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or similar laws.
  • You have concerns about the terms of a severance, non-compete, or employment agreement.

An employment lawyer can evaluate the merits of your claim, assert your rights, and advocate for the best possible resolution through negotiation or litigation.

Types of Employment Cases Nevels Nichols, LLP Takes On

The attorneys at Nevels Nichols have extensive experience handling a wide range of employment law matters on behalf of both employees and employers. Our areas of practice include:

Wage & Hour Disputes

We represent clients in claims involving minimum wage and overtime violations, meal and rest break issues, improper payroll deductions, and other compensation-related matters arising under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and California labor laws.

Employment Class Actions

In cases where an employer's unlawful practices affect a large group of employees, we have the resources to pursue complex class action litigation to obtain remedies for all impacted workers.

Overtime Violations

California law has strict rules for properly calculating overtime pay. We assist employees in recovering unpaid wages when employers fail to follow these regulations.

Meal & Rest Break Violations

Employees have the right to take duty-free meal and rest periods based on their daily work schedule. Our lawyers hold employers accountable when these essential break periods are denied.

Employee Misclassification

Employers sometimes misclassify workers as independent contractors to unlawfully deprive them of salary, benefits, and legal protections. We advocate for employees whose rights were violated through improper classification.

Employer Retaliation

It is illegal for employers to punish employees for asserting their workplace rights by firing, demoting, or otherwise retaliating against them. We defend whistleblowers and others who have faced retaliation.

Discrimination and Harassment

Federal and state laws prohibit discrimination, harassment, or bias in the workplace based on race, gender, age, disability, and other protected classes. Our firm pursues justice for victims of illegal discrimination.

Severance Agreements

When employees leave a job, severance pay and release agreements require careful review to understand obligations and protections. Our attorneys ensure your rights are preserved.

Wrongful Termination

There are legal restrictions on when and how an employer can terminate an employee. We hold employers accountable for wrongful terminations that violate public policy or an employment contract.

Employer Defense

In addition to advocating for employees, our firm represents employers in claims of wage and hour violations, discrimination allegations, wrongful termination suits, and other workplace disputes.

Why Choose Us for Your Employment Law Needs

Whether you are an employee who has experienced injustice or an employer facing legal action, the accomplished team at Nevels Nichols, LLP has the expertise to protect your rights and interests. Key advantages of our firm:

  • Tenacious Advocacy: We are aggressive courtroom litigators who will tirelessly fight for a just outcome through mediation, arbitration, or civil trial if needed.
  • Extensive Litigation Experience: Our attorneys have a record of successful results in highly complex employment cases and class actions.
  • Personal Service: We provide individualized attention and pragmatic counsel tailored to each client's unique goals and circumstances.
  • Stellar Reputation: Our law firm is widely respected throughout California's legal community for our integrity, skill, and professional excellence.

At Nevels Nichols, we understand employment laws can be confusing to navigate alone. Contact us today for a confidential consultation to learn how we can be a powerful legal advocate on your side.

Civil Litigation Frequently Asked Questions

How much time do I have to file a responsive pleading in a civil case?

In California, a defendant typically has 30 days from the date of being served with a summons and complaint to file a responsive pleading. However, this timeframe may vary depending on the specific circumstances of the case. It's important to consult with a California civil litigation attorney to ensure compliance with all applicable legal procedures and deadlines.

What are the types of fee arrangements?

There are several types of fee arrangements available in civil litigation cases in California, including hourly fees, contingency fees, and flat fees. Hourly fees involve paying the attorney for each hour of work performed, contingency fees involve paying the attorney a percentage of the settlement or judgment obtained, and flat fees involve paying a fixed amount for legal services. The type of fee arrangement that is most suitable for a particular case will depend on the specific circumstances of the case and the client's budget and preferences.

How long does a civil litigation case take to get to trial?

The length of time it takes for a civil litigation case to get to trial in California can vary widely depending on several factors, including the complexity of the case, the court's calendar, and the parties' willingness to negotiate and settle. In general, civil litigation cases in California can take several months to several years to reach trial, and even then, the trial may be rescheduled or delayed due to various factors. It's important to work with an experienced civil litigation attorney who can help manage the process and provide guidance on the likely timeline of the case.

Can I represent myself in a civil litigation case?

In California, individuals have the right to represent themselves in civil litigation cases, but it's generally not recommended. Civil litigation can be complex, and even minor procedural errors can have significant consequences. An experienced civil litigation attorney can provide guidance and representation throughout the process, increasing the likelihood of a successful outcome. It's advisable to at least consult with an attorney before deciding to represent oneself in a civil litigation case.

At what point can I settle my civil litigation case?

In California, a civil litigation case can be settled at any point in the process, including before filing a lawsuit, during pretrial negotiations, during trial, or even during the appeal process. Settlement negotiations can take place at any time, and it's often in the best interest of both parties to explore settlement options early on in the process to avoid the time, expense, and uncertainty of a trial. An experienced civil litigation attorney can help guide the settlement negotiation process and ensure that any settlement agreement reached is fair and reasonable.

What happens when I settle my civil litigation case?

When a lawsuit is settled in California, the parties involved typically agree to resolve the dispute without going to trial. The terms of the settlement are usually set forth in a written agreement, which may include a monetary payment, specific actions to be taken, or other provisions designed to resolve the dispute. Once the settlement agreement is signed by all parties and filed with the court, the case is dismissed, and the parties are generally bound by the terms of the settlement agreement.

What is mediation?

Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution in which a neutral third party, the mediator, facilitates negotiations between two or more parties in an attempt to reach a mutually acceptable resolution to their dispute. The mediator does not have the power to impose a resolution on the parties but instead works to help them communicate effectively, identify areas of agreement, and find creative solutions that meet everyone's needs. Mediation can be a cost-effective and efficient way to resolve disputes outside of court.


I genuinely appreciated how responsive and capable Brooke Nevels was at handling my civil lawsuit. Brooke was very resourceful at get me a settlement when other, more senior attorneys had failed.


What I liked about Christopher Nichols was the way that he treated me, and best of all is that he produced results.


Brooke demonstrated exceptional thoroughness, promptness, and professionalism. We will definitely turn to her services again in the future if any issues arise.


I would like to express my respect for the deep knowledge, high level of professionalism, as well as showing genuine concern for the client's welfare by Mr. Chris Nichols throughout.


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