WHAT I DO

 Over the past 20 years I have successfully represented executives, managers and employees throughout New York, the United States and the World.

 

Whether you work on Wall Street or Main Street, for a Fortune 500 multinational or a “start-up”, the workplace environment and the rights of employees and employers within that environment, have become extremely complex. I help you understand and navigate these complexities.

 

 I level the legal playing field between employees and employers.  I work closely with them to educate them about their legal and practical risks, rights and opportunities before making employment related decisions that will affect their professional objectives and compensation. I use the tools of negotiation, litigation and/or arbitration to assist executives and employees in attaining their employment related objectives, and help resolve their employment related disputes as quickly and efficiently as possible so they can focus on their futures.

AREAS OF FOCUS

Executives and employees have used my strategic counsel to enhance and protect their compensation, severance and careers through negotiation, litigation, and/or arbitration on an extensive range of employment issues including:

Employment, Retention and Equity Agreements / Offer Letters

I assist executives/employees

in understanding and negotiating the terms and conditions of their employment agreements and offer letters

Discrimination & Retaliation

I help protect executives/employees

from negative decisions based on their age, race, national origin, pregnancy, disability, religion, gender and sexual orientation or for reporting such illegally motivated treatment in violation of federal, state and city statutes

Severance Agreements

I assist executives/employees

in improving the terms and conditions of their severance offer by applying their unique leverage...to an appropriate target...in the correct manner

Non-Compete, Non-Solicitation and Confidentiality Agreements & Disputes

I help executives/employees

reduce and/or eliminate the scope and impact of Non-compete, Non-solicitation, and Confidentiality Agreements and Disputes

Bonus, Equity & Compensation Issues

I assist executives/employees

in recovering all of the salary, bonuses, commissions, equity and benefits they were promised and/or earned during their employment

Sexual Harassment

I assist

the victims of sexual harassment as well as defend executives/employees accused of such behavior

Human Resource Issues

I provide

strategic counseling on how to interact with HR on issues including resignations, performance warnings, interpersonal conflicts with managers and co-workers, reporting discrimination/retaliation and violations of law, employer policies and codes of conduct, FMLA & Disability leave, and disability accommodations

Pension & Benefit Rights

I review,

negotiate and litigate violations of ERISA, FMLA, the WARN Act as well as related state statutes

WHO IS TRACEY?

 

Professional Story

Tracey is a member of the New York State Bar.  He has been practicing  law before the Trial and Appellate Courts  of New York State for almost 25 years. He has spent 20 of those years appearing before the Federal Courts of the  the Eastern and Southern Districts.

Tracey received his undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and graduated cum laude from Brooklyn Law School.

Following law school, and before opening his current law firm Himmel & Bernstein, LLP in 2005, Tracey worked as a Staff Attorney for the NYPD.  He also clerked for the Hon. Lorraine S. Miller, JSC, and was a partner in the law firm of Sklover, Himmel & Bernstein, LLP.

To learn more about Tracey, his services, and how he might be able to help you: Email him at  tbernstein@hbesq.com, or call him at (212) 631-0200.

Personal Story

Tracey volunteers his time as a member of the Board of Directors of Covecare Center, which provides counseling and medical assistance to families and individuals in crisis due to mental health and addiction issues.  He can also be found trail running with his dog, climbing rocks and mountains, skiing and scuba diving.

Tracey is an avid traveler, a voracious reader, and a “very” amateur guitar player.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


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Q:        What types of employee / employer issues do you assist with?

A:        I assist with issues related to employment, severance, retention, non-compete/non-solicit and equity agreements, bonus & salary disputes, wrongful termination, sexual harassment, discrimination and retaliation, whistle-blowing and Human Resource relations.

Q:        When is the right time to meet with you regarding my employment issue?

A:        While there are no clear guidelines, a proactive approach is always best. Contacting a lawyer to discuss your options prior to any employment decision gives you a better opportunity to shape your own future and to prevent problems before they begin or escalate further.

Q:        How do you work with clients?

A:        In almost all instances, the first step is to have an initial consultation. At that time, I will review your situation and provide guidance as to your options for proceeding on your own, or hiring me to assist you.

Q:        How much do you charge?

A:        Contact me directly to discuss my current consultation, hourly contingency and retainer rates.

Q:        Do I need to come to your office in order for us to work together?

A:        No, you do not need to come to my office.  I represent individuals throughout the United States and internationally. Most, if not all, of the work can be done via a combination of telephone and electronic mail if you are unable to meet in person.

Q:        Do you represent companies?

A:        Yes, I represent small companies (i.e., less than 20-30 employees).  However, I avoid conflicts of interest as the vast majority of my clients work for large companies and I do not represent employees within the same organization.

TRACEY’S TIPS

An expanding collection of “brief” thoughts on a variety of employment issues that
executives and employees commonly face at work.

LATEST BLOG POSTS

EXECUTIVE CONTRACT: SEVERANCE

Companies are often reluctant to grant an executive severance upon the expiration of the executive’s contract term. When negotiating an executive employment agreement under these circumstances, the fall back position is to eliminate the term completely and become an “at will” employee.
[…]

IS HR YOUR FRIEND? NO!

Yet, time and time again employees place too much trust in Human Resource (“HR”) personnel only to learn at a later time that it was a mistake to do so.
[…]

WHAT TO DO IF YOU GET FIRED

Getting fired is a painful experience that usually comes without warning and, sometimes, under suspect circumstances.  Depending on the length of the employment relationship and the manner of the termination emotions can often run amok.
[…]

NON-COMPETES: THE PRACTICAL RISK

Whether it is a new job or an existing one, you may be asked at anytime to agree to limit where you may work or what clients you may contact after your employment ends.  The question is not whether these “restrictive covenants” are enforceable but what effect will they have on your career.
[…]

GET IN TOUCH

 

Tracey can be reached through his law firm, Himmel & Bernstein, LLP, at the address below.

HB logo

Himmel & Bernstein, LLP
928 Broadway, New York, NY 10010
(212) 631-0200
tbernstein@hbesq.com