When she is not hard at work, Heather enjoys spending time with her family, working with local animal shelters to rescue dogs, and traveling.
"I’m always looking out for my clients and alerting them to potential risks we need to mitigate and actions we need to take to keep them protected. It gives me a great deal of satisfaction to battle strategically for my clients on high-stakes matters and procure a favorable outcome that saves them a great deal of money—and sometimes the business itself."
Specializing in the defense of big-risk and complex class and collective action employment litigation, Heather Hearne handles the full range of labor and employment matters under both federal and various states’ laws, including representative claims for violations of California’s Private Attorneys’ General Act (PAGA). Cool under pressure, she regularly defends claims alleging discrimination, retaliation, harassment, and wrongful discharge. Heather also advocates for clients in cases involving wage and hour issues, collective actions under both the Fair Labor Standards Acts (FLSA) and state wage and hour laws, as well as claims before federal and state labor boards, including California’s Division of Labor Standards Enforcement.
As an enthusiastic believer in the adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” Heather advises clients on day-to-day employment matters with an eye toward avoiding risks, preventing problems, and addressing difficulties as soon as they arise. Common issues include personnel and payroll policies and practices, classification and leave issues, disability accommodations, wage statement compliance, and updates to company policies and practices. In addition to minimizing risk, Heather also spots opportunities and helps clients take advantage of them.
California presents employers with many byzantine labor and employment law requirements, and Heather’s clients rely on her to keep them updated and compliant. They appreciate her constant monitoring of the ever-changing regulatory maze, her in-depth understanding of nuances and details of complicated rules, and her ability to adeptly guide them through it all. Heather places a premium on developing strong connections and good relationships with clients, colleagues, and plaintiff's counsel alike. With excellent writing skills, Heather often contributes her insights to the firm’s client newsletters and regional legal journals
Previously, Heather litigated for clients at the global law firm Gibson Dunn, where she gained valuable experience defending multifaceted class actions and other complex litigation cases. Prior to embarking on a legal career, Heather worked as a reporter for a local news affiliate, where she honed her instincts for asking the right questions, communicating clearly with people, and gaining their trust.