Laura Petroff is a labor and employment relations partner in Winston & Strawn’s Los Angeles office.
Ms. Petroff has more than 25 years of experience as a labor and employment litigator and counselor, representing major employers in all aspects of employment relations, including litigation and preventive counseling and guidance. She has extensive experience defending employers in class actions, and also in multi- and single-plaintiff cases in state and federal courts, and has consistently achieved favorable results both before and at trial and arbitration. Although her representations have involved claims ranging from sexual harassment to various types of discrimination, whistleblower, and non-competition agreement matters, she has focused considerable attention on defending employers in class actions, particularly wage and hour cases.
Ms. Petroff also has substantial experience handling negotiations, trainings, investigations, and the preparation of employment policies and procedures, employment contracts, confidentiality agreements, and non-competition agreements. She routinely counsels clients on a wide array of employment matters, including wrongful discharge, privacy, employee raiding and trade secrets, disability accommodation, employee discipline, managing leaves of absence, and equal employment opportunity.
Ms. Petroff has considerable experience representing employers in the consumer and luxury goods, cosmetics, financial services, manufacturing, professional services, health care, and retail industries, among others.
Ms. Petroff’s representative clients include the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences; Canyon Capital Partners; Nuveen Investments; Symphony Asset Management; Helpmates Staffing Services, Zodiac Marine & Pool North America, Inc.; Magan Medical Clinic; Promax; The Cheesecake Factory, Inc.; Coaster Company of America, Inc.; LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton; Louis Vuitton North America, Inc.; Chandon; Celine; Fendi; De Beers; Christian Dior; Givenchy; Marc Jacobs International; Make Up Forever; Thomas Pink; and LVMH Watch & Jewelry.
Ms. Petroff has been recognized as a leading employment defense lawyer by Chambers USA from 2009-2013, and was nominated for the Los Angeles Business Journal’s “Executive of the Year” award in both 2008 and 2009, as part of the publication’s “Women Making a Difference” awards program. She has been honored as a Southern California Super Lawyer for 2004, and from 2006-2012. In addition, Ms. Petroff was named to the prestigious annual “Top 100 Attorneys in California” list for 2006 by The Daily Journal.
Honors and Awards
Ms. Petroff is chair of the firm's Partner Compensation Committee and a member of the Diversity Committee.
Ms. Petroff was a founding member of the Women Rainmakers Roundtable and serves on the boards of directors of Public Counsel and the California Women’s Law Center.
Ms. Petroff received a B.A. from Denison University in 1977 and a J.D. from Vanderbilt University School of Law in 1980.
Speeches and Publications
Ms. Petroff frequently speaks on topics of interest to employers. Her recent speeches include “Hot Topics in the Employment Arena: From Managing Class Actions to Social Media Implications, Employers Face New Challenges,” “Avoiding the Alphabet – Escaping the EEOC, Dodging the DFEH, and Other Handy Tricks,” “3rd Quarter Employment Law Update,” “Tips, Tactics & Trends for 2010,” “Social Media in the Workplace,” “The Legalities of Reducing Payroll,” “Conducting Effective Investigations,” “Balancing Employees’ Rights in the Information Age,” “Harassment Prevention,” and “Employment Law Update: The Legal Year in Review and New Developments in the Courts and the Legislature.”