Gregory Knopp is a member of the firm’s employment practice primarily focusing on class and collective actions and other complex disputes. Mr. Knopp has litigated dozens of class and complex matters in state and federal courts across the country, including in California, New York, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Mr. Knopp represents clients in numerous industries, including financial services and other professional services, retail, technology, transportation, and health care.
Practice & Background
Mr. Knopp has handled a variety of complex matters before state and federal courts and administrative agencies, including matters involving wage and hour claims, discrimination and harassment claims, tax-related claims, contract claims, and tort claims involving alleged injuries. Mr. Knopp also regularly counsels clients regarding labor and employment issues.
Mr. Knopp is the head of the firm’s Los Angeles labor and employment practice. He also is a member of the firm’s partnership admissions committee.
Mr. Knopp received his J.D. with high honors in 1996 from the Georgetown University Law Center, where he was a member of The Georgetown Law Journal, and his B.A. in government from Cornell University in 1992.
Mr. Knopp’s recent engagements include:
- assisted professional sports league in obtaining dismissal of nationwide putative class action by former professional athletes claiming that the league was responsible for injuries resulting from alleged improper administration of painkilling drugs (2015)
- obtained dismissal of class action against national arts and crafts retailer and two of its subsidiaries in case in which the plaintiff claimed that the companies violated California law and common law by misleading employees about their vacation policy (2015)
- obtained summary judgment for Fortune 500 retailer in a California-wide class action in which the plaintiff claimed that the company systematically failed to pay employees for time spent working at the end of their shifts (2014)
- obtained dismissal in favor of arbitration and otherwise defeated class certification in several class actions against Big 4 accounting firm challenging the firm’s treatment of certain professional employees as exempt from California, New York and federal overtime laws (through 2014)
- assisted national retail company in obtaining dismissal of a putative class action in Oregon challenging its tax treatment of certain payments received by the employees (2014)
- obtained dismissal in favor of arbitration for national health and fitness company in a nationwide class action alleging that the company improperly paid its exercise trainers under California and federal law (2014)
- obtained partial summary judgment and otherwise defeated class certification in a California-wide class action in which the plaintiff alleged that Fortune 500 retailer improperly “rounds” employee time in calculating their pay, improperly calculates overtime wages, and systematically denies employees meal and rest breaks (2014)
- assisted national retail company in compelling arbitration and thus avoiding a class action in West Virginia in the company’s first case in which it attempted to enforce its newly-adopted arbitration program (2014)
- in one of the first written opinions applying California’s seating requirements (a new, fertile source of litigation for plaintiffs), obtained summary judgment for Fortune 500 company in class action alleging that the company failed to provide “suitable seats” to retail employees (2014)
- overwhelmingly defeated class certification for Fortune 500 retailer in a case in which the plaintiff asserted claims for unpaid wages and missed breaks, among others, and estimated the potential damages and penalties as exceeding hundreds of millions of dollars (late 2013)
- defended Fortune 500 company in multi-week class action trial in a case involving claims that challenged company’s practices concerning customer tips and sought monetary recovery in excess of $100 million
- defended various companies in trials in cases that involved claims of retaliation, harassment and discrimination
Awards & Accolades
- Akin Gump’s labor and employment practice named as Law360 Employment Practice Group of the Year four times in the past seven years, including in 2009, 2013, 2015 and 2016
- Inclusion as a leading lawyer from 2010-2017 in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the area of labor and employment
- Named among the top Labor & Employment Lawyers for 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014 by the Daily Journal for his class action defense work.