Alison R. Kalinski

Alison R. Kalinski Associate

Alison Kalinski is an associate in the Los Angeles office of Liebert Cassidy Whitmore where she provides advice and representation to public agency and private education clients, including religious schools in matters pertaining to employment and student law. Alison is an experienced litigator and represents clients in a wide array of matters.  She defends clients on claims of sexual and racial harassment and discrimination, age and disability discrimination, retaliation, wage and hour violations, wrongful termination, and due process violations. Alison also represents employers in all aspects of employment disputes, including the hiring and termination of employees, discrimination and harassment issues, wage and hour laws, and other personnel issues.

Alison also regularly conducts depositions, drafts discovery, and negotiates and drafts settlement agreements.  Alison has argued before state and federal courts and the California Court of Appeal. 

Prior to joining Liebert Cassidy Whitmore, Alison practiced as a litigator in the New York City offices of two international law firms and then relocated to Los Angeles and practiced at a boutique litigation firm. At her prior firms, Alison represented large private employers in litigation arising from gender discrimination and wage and hour matters, and obtained a full dismissal of all claims in both actions. Alison has also defended clients in the financial sector, sustaining a dismissal of plaintiff's claims through the appellate level.

Committed to pro bono work, Alison obtained cancellation of removal under the Violence Against Women Act for a victim of domestic violence and sex-trafficking and obtained asylum for a refugee from Cameroon who was tortured for being a homosexual.

While in law school, Alison served as managing editor of the Tulane Law Review.  Upon her graduation magna cum laude, Alison clerked for the Honorable Steven M. Gold in United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.  Alison is admitted to practice in California and New York. 

Education

  • JD, Tulane Law School

  • BA, Washington University, St. Louis

ADMINISTRATIVE HEARINGS

Police Officer v. City (2016) - Following a two-day hearing, a Personnel Appeals Board upheld the termination of a Police Officer for dishonesty and failing to properly investigate and report domestic violence. The Police Officer responded to a call for a battery and arrived on the scene to find evidence of domestic violence. The Officer, however, failed to follow Department policies and procedures and adequately investigate the domestic violence. At the hearing, the Officer admitted his investigation was deficient and he could have done a better job. Even more troubling, however, is that when the Officer was investigated for failing to properly investigate the domestic violence, he provided misleading and dishonest statements. While the Officer stated he did not notice visible signs of domestic violence on the night of the incident, the body camera video plainly shows that he noticed an injury on the victim that night. The Board upheld his termination for dishonesty.

LITIGATION

Scott v. Azusa Pacific University, et. al (2019) – A former employee of the University’s Campus Safety Department brought claims of wage and hour violations, wrongful termination, sexual harassment, retaliation, emotional distress, and workplace violence against the University.  Plaintiff claimed that he was entitled to overtime for the time he spent socializing and going to the movies with the former Chief of the department, as well as for time he spent doing the Chief’s homework.  The firm obtained dismissal of the claim for sexual harassment on demurrer on the grounds that APU was exempt from the Fair Employment and Housing Act as a religious corporation.  The firm then initially obtained summary adjudication on all causes of action except the wage and hour claims.  On the wage and hour claims, the trial court found that while the employee was an exempt executive employee, a question of fact remained as to whether he was entitled to overtime compensation for the hours he was on-call, which the employee claimed was 24/7.  The firm sought a writ of mandate from the Court of Appeal on the basis that the employee was not entitled to any additional pay for on-call time once he was found to be exempt from overtime.  The Court of Appeal issued a coercive Palma notice to the trial court stating its intention to grant the peremptory writ of mandate.  In response, the trial court scheduled a further hearing and then granted summary judgment to APU in its entirety.

Special District v. Former Employee (2019) - In this case, one employee assaulted another employee, without provocation, at the Special District workplace. The employee who was attacked did not know why the other employee assaulted him. The Special District terminated the attacker-employee, but thereafter, other employees saw him in the parking lot and they were concerned.  The employee who was attacked feared he would be attacked again if he encountered the former-employee. Kalinski guided the employee’s testimony in court about the attack and his fears that it could re-occur.  In response, the court issued a permanent restraining order that keeps the attacker away from the employee and the worksite for three years.

Miller v. City of Los Angeles, et. al. (2015) - In a whistleblower retaliation federal lawsuit, the former Independent Assessor for the City of Los Angeles’s Fire Commission brought a lawsuit against the City and several individual defendants, alleging FEHA, § 1983, and Labor Code 1102.5 violations.  The firm obtained complete summary judgment on all causes of action on behalf of the City, the Mayor, all five Fire Commissioners, and a Mayoral employee.

Education

  • JD, Tulane Law School

  • BA, Washington University, St. Louis

Oct 7, 2019

#MeToo 2.0: A Guide to Help Navigate New Workplace Harassment Laws

J. Scott Tiedemann and Alison Kalinski authored this article for Western City.

Mar 2, 2017

Writings Concerning Public Business Are Public Records – Even If They Are Sent, Received, Or Stored On An Employee’s Personal Email, Phone, Or Computer

The California Supreme Court today reversed the Court of Appeal in City of San Jose v. Superior Court (Smith), and held that communications by a city employee concerning public business on a personal account, such as email, phone or computer, may be subject to disclosure under the California Public Records Act (“PRA”).

Feb 7, 2017

No Bones About It: No Compensation for Canine Handlers Training to be Canine Instructors

The United States Court of Federal Claims (a court with nationwide jurisdiction hearing specialized claims against the federal government) recently held that a group of certified canine handlers were not entitled to compensation for time spent training to become certified canine instructors.  

Jul 13, 2016

The Fourth Circuit Holds that Fire Captains Are Non-Exempt Employees Under the FLSA Because Their Primary Job Duty Is Being a First Responder

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit (covering such east coast states as Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland) recently held that a group of fire Captains are entitled to overtime under the FLSA because their primary duty is being a first responder.  The case, Morrison v. County of Fairfax, Virginia, was decided June 21, 2016. 

Education

  • JD, Tulane Law School

  • BA, Washington University, St. Louis

19 March 2020
24 October 2019
26 August 2019
Customized Trainings

Preventing Harassment, Discrimination and Retaliation in the Private and Independent School Environment

The Rabbi Jacob Pressman Academy of Temple Beth Ann Los Angeles
Read more

Education

  • JD, Tulane Law School

  • BA, Washington University, St. Louis

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