People: Esteban Shardonofsky, Associate

Photo of Esteban Shardonofsky, Associate

Esteban Shardonofsky

Associate

Houston
Direct: (713) 225-1001
Fax: (713) 225-2340
0

Esteban (Steve) Shardonofsky is a senior associate in the Labor and Employment Practice Group in the Houston office of Seyfarth Shaw LLP.  He is Board Certified in Labor & Employment Law by Texas Board of Legal Specialization.  Mr. Shardonofsky represents employers and management in federal and state court, arbitration and before administrative agencies such as the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) in connection with all aspects of employment litigation—from inception through trial or arbitration, as well as on appeal.  He advises and represents clients in the energy/oilfield services, healthcare, construction, banking/finance, and hospitality industries.

Mr. Shardonofsky has substantial expertise in defending employers in wage and hour class and collective action lawsuits, including matters involving allegations of misclassification of employees and failure to pay overtime.  He has also successfully defended employers in disputes with executives over breach of contract claims and has defended employment claims under various state and federal statutes, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Section 1981 of Title 42 of the United States Code, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, the Texas Workers’ Compensation Act, and the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act.  Mr. Shardonofsky also has experience litigating complex discrimination “pattern and practice” cases under Title VII.

Mr. Shardonofsky provides employment counseling and best practices advice to managers and human resources professionals relating to personnel handbooks and policies, employee relations, internal complaints and investigations, FMLA and ADA accommodation and leave, as well as other employment issues which employers face routinely.  He also provides training for attorneys, executives, human resources professionals, and managers on best EEO practices, preventing sexual harassment, and avoiding employment litigation claims.

Mr. Shardonofsky oversees attorney pro-bono efforts in the Houston office.  He also participates in various pro bono activities, including prisoner civil rights cases and assisting unaccompanied and undocumented minors through immigration proceedings.

Mr. Shardonofsky was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and is fluent in Spanish.

Esteban (Steve) Shardonofsky is a senior associate in the Labor and Employment Practice Group in the Houston office of Seyfarth Shaw LLP.  He is Board Certified in Labor & Employment Law by Texas Board of Legal Specialization.  Mr. Shardonofsky represents employers and management in federal and state court, arbitration and before administrative agencies such as the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) in connection with all aspects of employment litigation—from inception through trial or arbitration, as well as on appeal.  He advises and represents clients in the energy/oilfield services, healthcare, construction, banking/finance, and hospitality industries.

Mr. Shardonofsky has substantial expertise in defending employers in wage and hour class and collective action lawsuits, including matters involving allegations of misclassification of employees and failure to pay overtime.  He has also successfully defended employers in disputes with executives over breach of contract claims and has defended employment claims under various state and federal statutes, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Section 1981 of Title 42 of the United States Code, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, the Texas Workers’ Compensation Act, and the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act.  Mr. Shardonofsky also has experience litigating complex discrimination “pattern and practice” cases under Title VII.

Mr. Shardonofsky provides employment counseling and best practices advice to managers and human resources professionals relating to personnel handbooks and policies, employee relations, internal complaints and investigations, FMLA and ADA accommodation and leave, as well as other employment issues which employers face routinely.  He also provides training for attorneys, executives, human resources professionals, and managers on best EEO practices, preventing sexual harassment, and avoiding employment litigation claims.

Mr. Shardonofsky oversees attorney pro-bono efforts in the Houston office.  He also participates in various pro bono activities, including prisoner civil rights cases and assisting unaccompanied and undocumented minors through immigration proceedings.

Mr. Shardonofsky was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and is fluent in Spanish.

Education

  • J.D., University of Houston Law Center (2005)
    Head Articles Editor,
    Houston Journal of International Law
    Member, Order of the Barons
  • B.A., University of Houston (2002)
    in Classical Studies
    summa cum laude
  • Certified Lean Six Sigma Green Belt

Admissions

  • Texas

Courts

  • All Texas state courts
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern, Northern, Southern and Western Districts of Texas
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, pro hac vice
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, pro hac vice

Affiliations

  • Seyfarth Shaw LLP National Pro Bono Committee
  • Society for Human Resources Management
  • Houston Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section
  • Houston Young Lawyers Association (Executive Board Member, 2006 – 2007)

Representative Engagements

  • Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. adv. Raymond Richardson, et al., Civil Action No. 04:11-cv-00738; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Successfully opposed conditional certification in nationwide off-the-clock FLSA case brought on behalf of former Wells Fargo personal bankers)
  • Wachovia Corporation, et al. adv. Ryan Switzer, et al., Civil Action No. 04:11-cv-01604; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Opposing nationwide off-the-clock FLSA case brought on behalf of former Wachovia financial specialists)
  • Wachovia Corporation, et al. adv. LaDonna McNeill, et al., Civil Action. No. 4:11-cv-01401; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Opposing nationwide off-the-clock FLSA case brought on behalf of former Wachovia bank tellers)
  • Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. adv. Aaron McNeill, et al., Civil Action No. 4:11-cv-01400; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Opposing nationwide off-the-clock FLSA case brought on behalf of Wells Fargo bank tellers)
  • Sikorsky Support Services, Inc., adv. Sonia Hernandez, Civil Case No. C-10-326; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Corpus Christi Division. (Summary judgment granted to defendant in current plaintiff’s claims of sex discrimination, sexual harassment, and retaliation)
  • H&R Block Eastern Enterprises, Inc. adv. Rita Greene, et al.,Case No. 10-21663-CIV-KING; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division. (Obtained pre-Answer motion to dismiss Fair Labor Standards Act collective action brought on behalf of tax professionals based on novel improper claims splitting arguments)
  • Farmers Insurance Exchange adv. Ed Leps; Case No. 10-10686, In the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. (Summary judgment affirmed for employer in FLSA retaliation case against national insurance company brought by a former property claim representative.  The court also assessed all court costs against the plaintiff)
  • Farmers Insurance Exchange adv. Frederick J. Mahoney, Civil Action No. 4:09-cv-02327; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Fair Labor Standards Act collective action brought on behalf of insurance claims representatives alleging defendant’s automated scheduling system failed to include, and provide compensation for, all compensable activities throughout the work day)
  • H&R Block Eastern Enterprises, Inc. adv. Joaquin Llano, et al.,Case No. 09-22531-CV-KING; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division.(Successfully opposed conditional certification in nationwide off-the-clock FLSA case brought on behalf of tax professionals.  Subsequently obtained order to decertifying Miami-Dade County collective action)
  • Jacobs Field Services of North America, Inc. and ExxonMobil Corporation adv. Kimberly Boutin; Civil Action No. H-09-0322; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Summary judgment granted to both defendants in sex discrimination and retaliation case; court also found plaintiff could not establish joint-employer relationship)
  • Kiewit Texas Construction L.P. adv. Joel Olmedo, Civil Action No. 5:08-CV-00061; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Laredo Division. (Defense summary judgment in race and national origin discrimination case)
  • Allied Waste Industries, Inc. adv. Keaton Williams, Civil Action No. 1:09-CV-705; In the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Beaumont Division (Summary judgment granted in favor of employer on religious discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claim)

Presentations

  • Co-Presenter, “Ethics @ Work,” CLE for in-house counsel, Houston, Texas (April and August 2014).
  • Co-Presenter, “Top L&E Developments: What Happened in 2013 and What to Watch for in 2014,” Seyfarth CLE, Houston, Texas (February 2014)
  • “Upcoming Changes to the White Collar Exemptions, and What They Mean for Energy Employers,” Seyfarth Shaw’s Energy Employment Law Group CLE Seminar, Houston Texas (June 2014)
  • “Common Cents FLSA Compliance,” CLE course for Houston-area attorneys, Houston, Texas (April 2014)
  • “Emerging Wage & Hour Issues,” Texas Labor & Employee Relations Consortium, San Antonio, Texas (October 2013)
  • “Energy Employers’ Common (and Costly) Wage & Hour Mistakes,” Seyfarth Shaw’s Energy Employment Law Group Seminar, Houston Texas (September 2013)
  • “Traversing the Morass: What is Compensable Time Under the FLSA,” Bridgeport CLE, Houston, TX (September 2013)
  • “Little Known Retaliation Claims That Bite Back: FLSA, Workers’ Compensation, and FMLA Retaliation,” Houston Bar Association CLE, Houston, TX (July 2013)
  • “Worst Case Scenarios at Work,” Seyfarth Shaw Breakfast Briefing, Dallas, Texas (June 19, 2013)
  • “Looking Back at 2011 -- Supreme Court L&E Cases,” Seyfarth Shaw Breakfast Briefing, Houston, Texas (April 11, 2012) 
  • EEO and Employment Law Training Presentation to Energy Industry Managers and Human Resources Professionals, Houston, TX (November 2011 & January 2012)
  • “Emerging Privacy Issues in the Workplace,” Houston Bar Association CLE, Houston, TX (June 2011)
  • EEO and Employment Law Training Presentation Managers and Human Resources Professionals in Healthcare Industry, Houston, TX (March 2011)
  • “Workplace Harassment: Prevention, Identification, and Remediation,” Lorman Seminar, McAllen, TX (November 2008)

Publications

Accolades

  • 2011 Seyfarth Shaw Pro Bono Team of the Year — In 2011, Mr. Shardonofsky and his colleagues achieved a very impressive win at the Texas Supreme Court in a pro bono family law matter. Our clients, a low-income couple, took in Zachery when he was just 6 months old. His mother had abandoned him and his father was unable to care for him. Our clients rescued Zac from abuse and unspeakable living conditions.  Out of the blue, Zac's mother reappeared and asserted that she should have custody of Zac. Even though she had mistreated, neglected, and ultimately abandoned Zac, she claimed that he had been kidnapped from her. The Seyfarth team prevailed at the Texas Supreme Court and defended our clients' right to maintain custody of Zac.
  • 2009 Seyfarth Shaw Pro Bono Team of the Year — In 2009, Mr. Shardonofsky assisted in the representation of a Texas prisoner alleging violations of his civil rights, and co-second chaired a three-day trial in federal district court on his behalf.

Community Involvement

  • Houston Center for Literacy (f/k/a Houston READ Commission) —Board of Directors (appointed by Houston City Council)