Photo of Wendy Lario

Wendy Johnson Lario Chairs the New Jersey Labor & Employment Practice and Co-Chairs the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice’s Employment Litigation & Trials group. She represents employers in litigation involving claims of discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wrongful termination and whistleblowing, among others. She appears regularly in federal and state courts in New Jersey and New York and defends employers against charges filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights (NJDCR) and the New York Division of Human Rights (NYDHR). Wendy also provides advice and training to management and in-house counsel on employment issues, including hiring, firing, harassment, misconduct, leave and attendance, employee accommodations, employment and severance agreements, executive contracts, independent contractors, internal investigations, background checks, employee handbooks and policies, social networking, reductions in force, and employer requirements under identity theft statutes. She has represented companies in the telecommunications, retail, automotive, pharmaceutical, consumer electronics and chemical industries, among others.

Wendy has appeared on national television, including CBS's The Early Show and CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight. She has commented on employment law issues in The Wall Street Journal, Philadelphia Inquirer, New Jersey Law Journal, Star-Ledger, The Record, the Courier News, New Jersey Business, NJ Biz and the Asbury Park Press.

Wendy lectures extensively and conducts seminars and training sessions concerning numerous employment law issues, including anti-discrimination laws, wrongful discharge, sexual and other harassment, and diversity training. She also trains and lectures on women's leadership, performance management, social networking, state and federal laws, including Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, New Jersey's Law Against Discrimination, New York's Human Rights Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), New Jersey's Family Leave Act, and New Jersey's Conscientious Employee Protection Act.

On Aug. 2, 2021, Governor Phil Murphy announced that New Jersey health care workers in certain state and private facilities must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or face consistent COVID-19
Continue Reading COVID-19 Update: New Requirements for Workers in Health Care Facilities in New Jersey

New York employees may now elect paid leave for time spent receiving the COVID-19 vaccination. Specifically, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed Assembly Bill A3354B, on March 12, 2021, which provides
Continue Reading COVID-19 Vaccination: Paid Leave Enacted in New York

In a decision that may have far-ranging impact for employers accused of retaliating against whistleblower-employees, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that an employee whose evidence was “entirely circumstantial,” and who did not provide “any evidence” of his employer’s alleged retaliatory motive, nonetheless presented enough evidence to survive summary judgment. Araujo v. NJ Transit Rail Operations, Inc., No. 12-2148 (3rd Cir. February 19, 2013). While the Araujo decision itself comes specifically from the federal whistleblower laws applicable to the railroad industry, the Third Circuit’s analysis of the applicable legal burdens may well apply to employers in such diverse industries as commercial trucking, airlines, maritime, automobile manufacture, and consumer products generally, as well as any employer covered by Sarbanes-Oxley.
Continue Reading Employers Guilty Until Proven Innocent? Third Circuit Lowers the Bar for Employees Claiming Retaliation for Certain Protected Whistleblower Activities

Superstorm Sandy dealt employers a hand-full of issues that ranged from wage & hour questions to employee leaves and how to call-in essential employees for business continuity purposes. Our recent Alert, “Taking Care of Business When Hurricanes, Storms and Natural Disasters Hit,” addresses some of the issues that frequently arise during these devastating events.
Continue Reading Taking Care of Business When Hurricanes, Storms and Natural Disasters Hit

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie recently signed into law Assembly Bill No. 2647. This bill requires New Jersey employers with 50 or more employees (total number employed – not just in New Jersey) to post a notice informing employees of their “right to be free from gender inequity or bias in pay, compensation, benefits or other terms or conditions of employment” under New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) and other state antidiscrimination statutes.
Continue Reading New Jersey Enacts New Pay Equality Poster and Notice Law

New Jersey may become the 8th state to prohibit the use of credit checks in the employment process. Employers, particularly those with multi-state operations, need to review their current background check procedures and make sure that they are consistent with the ever-changing laws governing job applicants and employees.

Continue Reading Restrictions on Credit Checks Coming Soon to a State Near You