People: Timothy Watson, Partner

Photo of Timothy Watson, Partner

Timothy Watson

Partner

Houston
Direct: (713) 860-0065
Fax: (713) 225-2340
0

Mr. Watson is a partner in the Wage & Hour Litigation Practice Group in Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s Houston office. Mr. Watson has a broad range of litigation experience in labor and employment law and complex litigation. He is the leader of the Wage and Hour Litigation Practice Group in the Houston office and regularly defends employers across the country in wage and hour class and collective actions brought under the Fair labor Standards Act and similar state laws.

Mr. Watson’s practice also includes representing employers in disputes with executives over breach of contract and wrongful termination claims as well as the defense of employers in employment discrimination cases under Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Texas Labor Code and other statutory and common law causes of action.

Mr. Watson serves at the Houston office representative to the firm’s Lawyer Development Committee, which supervises and evaluates associate attorneys. He is active in the firm’s Labor & Employment Department and is a frequent speaker on employment related topics.

Mr. Watson is a partner in the Wage & Hour Litigation Practice Group in Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s Houston office. Mr. Watson has a broad range of litigation experience in labor and employment law and complex litigation. He is the leader of the Wage and Hour Litigation Practice Group in the Houston office and regularly defends employers across the country in wage and hour class and collective actions brought under the Fair labor Standards Act and similar state laws.

Mr. Watson’s practice also includes representing employers in disputes with executives over breach of contract and wrongful termination claims as well as the defense of employers in employment discrimination cases under Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Texas Labor Code and other statutory and common law causes of action.

Mr. Watson serves at the Houston office representative to the firm’s Lawyer Development Committee, which supervises and evaluates associate attorneys. He is active in the firm’s Labor & Employment Department and is a frequent speaker on employment related topics.

Education

  • J.D., University of Texas School of Law (1990)
  • B.B.A., University of Texas (1986)

Admissions

  • Texas

Courts

  • U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Fifth, Ninth, and Tenth Circuits
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia
  • U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Western Districts of Louisiana
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma
  • U.S. District Courts for all Districts of Texas

Affiliations

  • Houston Bar Association (Labor and Employment Law Section)
  • Houston Volunteer Lawyers Project
  • Texas State Bar

Unless otherwise indicated, this attorney is not certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

Representative Engagements

Representative Wage & Hour Cases

  • Cornerstone Home Lending, Inc. adv. Christina Bingham, et al, Civil Action No. 4:15-cv-02377; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division- (Nationwide Fair Labor Standards Act collective action brought on behalf of Loan Officers alleging off-the-clock work claims)
  • 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)
  • The Finish Line, Inc. adv. Kris Daniels, et al., Case No. 2:07-cv-01501-GEB-GGH; In the United States District Court, Eastern District of California. (Nationwide collective action brought under Fair Labor Standards Act and California Labor Code in which plaintiffs claimed defendant improperly reduced plaintiffs' recorded hours worked in order to avoid overtime pay; Court granted summary judgment dismissing a plaintiff’s claims and denying plaintiffs' motion for conditional certification; plaintiff appealed to the Ninth Circuit; case settled on individual plaintiff basis after appellate briefing completed)
  • Finish Line, Inc. adv. Bruce Caldwell, Jr., et al., Civil Action No. H-06-0649; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Nationwide off-the-clock case brought on behalf of non-exempt sales assistants and assistant managers; case settled after plaintiff’s deposition on behalf of two individual plaintiffs)
  • Hewitt Associates LLC adv. Herring, et al., Case No. 3:06-CV-267 (GEB)(TJB) (D. NJ) (Defense of overtime pay claims asserted on behalf of benefits analysts under federal law)
  • Hewitt Associates LLC adv. Seng, et al., Civil Action No. H-06-3262; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Opposing a state-wide collective action in which benefits, human resource, and payroll specialists have alleged that they should have been classified as non-exempt)
  • Jacobs Field Services North America, Inc. adv. Dawn Jackson, et al.; Civil Action No. 3:10-cv-00338; United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Galveston Division. (Defeating conditional certification of case brought by hourly employees for uncompensated walking time from parking lot to work station) 
  • Matrix Service, Inc. adv. Stacy Watkins, et al., Civil Action No. 4:12-cv-02260; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Opposing claim for nationwide off the clock work by hourly employees; case settled with individual plaintiffs after favorable admissions by plaintiff in deposition)
  • Ryland Homes of Texas, Inc. and The Ryland Mortgage Company adv. Anjie Singletary, Case Number H-06-3453; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Nationwide collective action in which plaintiffs alleged the defendants improperly classified its loan officers as exempt; case settled on individual basis after plaintiff’s deposition)
  • Ryland Mortgage Company adv. Theresa Tijerina, et al., Case no. 4:08-cv-01390; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas. (Nationwide misclassification case in which plaintiffs alleged escrow agent position was improperly classified as exempt under the FLSA; plaintiffs dropped collective claims and agreed to pursue only claims of two individuals)
  • 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; case settled favorably with payment to individual named plaintiffs only)
  • Wachovia Corporation, et al. adv. Joseph Scutts, et al., Case No. 12-cv-7194 (PKC) (GWG); United States District Court Southern District of New York. (Defeating conditional certification of a proposed nationwide class of Wells Fargo personal bankers alleging off-the-clock work)
  • 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.  (Defeating conditional certification of a proposed nationwide class of Wachovia financial specialists alleging off-the-clock work)
  • Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. adv. April Miguele, et al., Civil Action No. 04-3460 (CCB), Civil Action No. 04- 3460 (CCB); In the United States District Court for the District of Maryland, Northern Division. (Plaintiffs challenged the method used by Wells Fargo to calculate the regular rate of pay and make remedial back pay payments to class of employee bank tellers. The court denied conditional certification and the case settled with respect to three individual plaintiffs)
  • Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. et al. adv. Fernandez, et al., Case No. 12-cv-7193 (PKC); United States District Court Southern District of New York. (Defeating class and conditional certification of a proposed region wide class of Wells Fargo personal bankers alleging off-the-clock work)
  • Wells Fargo Financial, Inc. adv. Compton, 2006 U.S. Dist LEXIS 84453 (W.D. Okla. 2006). (Defeating conditional certification of a putative class of financial services employees in a 13-state region because the court ruled that the evidence developed through discovery failed to establish a common plan or scheme to deprive employees of overtime pay, therefore making class treatment inappropriate)
  • Wells Fargo, N.A., et al. adv. Dianne Smith, et al., Civil Action No. 2:12-cv-06877-LDD; In the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.(Opposing conditional certification of nationwide class of employees allegedly performing uncompensated pre-shift work;  plaintiffs abandoned certification efforts after plaintiff’s deposition; case settled on individual basis)
  • Wells Fargo, N.A. adv. Keinon Stewart, Civil Action No. 04:05-cv-03741; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Purported nationwide off-the-clock case brought on behalf of “all current and former hourly employees who are employed by Wells Fargo “at present.” Eventually, the plaintiff gave up his efforts to pursue a collective action, and the case settled favorably.)
  • Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. adv. Tania Herrera and Shamina Khan, et al., Civil Action No. C 11-01485 SBA; In the United States District Court Northern District of California.  (Successfully moving to consolidate this case with Richardson case mention immediately above and defeating conditional certification of a proposed nationwide class of Wells Fargo personal bankers alleging off-the-clock work)
  • 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; case settled favorably with payment to individual named plaintiffs only)
  • 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.  (Defeating conditional certification of a proposed nationwide class of Wells Fargo personal bankers alleging off-the-clock work)
  • Wells Fargo & Company, et al. adv. Monique Perez, et al., Civil Action No. 03:14-cv-00989-MEJ; In the United States District Court Northern District of California, Oakland Division, (Defeating class certification of a proposed statewide class of all non-exempt Wells Fargo employees who recorded unpaid breaks of 20 minutes or less)
  • Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, et al. adv. Fabio Gulla, et al.; Civil Action No. 2:14-CV-07083-CCC-MF; In the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. (Opposing conditional certification of a proposed statewide class of Wells Fargo “mortgage brokers” alleging off-the-clock work)
  • Prosperity Mortgage Corp. adv. Michael F. Costello, et al., Civil Action No. 8:06-cv-0091 9-DKC; In the United States District Court for the District of Maryland, Southern Division. (State-wide misclassification case on behalf of all mortgage loan officers employed by Prosperity. Plaintiff did not obtain conditional certification and case settled based on claim of single plaintiff)
  • Saks & Co. adv. Standifer W. Crawford; Civil Action No. 4:14-cv-03665; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Opposing conditional certification of a proposed nationwide class of all non-exempt Saks employees who recorded unpaid breaks of 20 minutes or less)

Representative Other Cases

  • Costco Wholesale Corporation adv. Karen A. Dewitt, Civil Action No. 3-06-CV-2028-P; In the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division. (Defense summary judgment in gender discrimination and retaliation case)
  • Farmers Insurance Exchange adv. Ed Leps; Civil Action No. 3:09-cv-0780-K; In the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division. (Summary judgment in FLSA retaliation case; appeal to Fifth Circuit pending)
  • 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 employment discrimination case; court found plaintiff could not establish joint employer relationship)
  • Jacobs Field Services of North America, Inc. adv. Fabrizio Gonzalez; Civil Action No. 4:09-cv-00574; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Summary judgment in race and national origin discrimination case)
  • Philip Services Corporation n/k/a Phillip Holdings, LLC adv. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Civil Action No.: 4:09-cv-01 625; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. (Summary judgment granted against EEOC in pattern and practice case in which EEOC alleged employer breached settlement agreement; EEOC has filed notice of appeal to the Fifth Circuit)
  • 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)
  • Merck & Co., Inc., et al. adv. Kasha Williams, Civil Action No. 3:07-CV-1 834-K; In the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division; aff’d, 2010 WL 2465038 (5th Cir. June 16, 2010) (Defense summary judgment in racial discrimination and retaliation case; appeal to Fifth Circuit pending)
  • Merck-Medco Rx Services of Texas, L.L.C. adv. Peter Geiger, et al., Cause No. DV99-71 84-K; In the District Court of Dallas County, Texas; 44th Judicial District (April 2005). (Defense jury verdict in wrongful discharge/retaliation case)
  • Merck-Medco Rx Services of Texas, L.L.C. adv. Richard Davis, Cause No. DV99-71 84; In the 44th Judicial District Court of Dallas County (December 2003). (Defense jury verdict in wrongful discharge/retaliation case)
  • Merck-Medco Rx Services of Texas, L.L. C. adv. Cheryl L. Krause, Cause No. 4-98CV-220; Cause No. 4-98CV-220; In the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Fort Worth Division (Judge McBride), aff’d, 198 F.3d 241 (5th Cir. 1999). (Defense summary judgment in Americans with Disabilities Act case)
  • Merck-Medco Rx Services of Texas, L.L. C. adv. Debra Collins, C.A. No. 3:00-CV-1 852-X; In the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division. (Defense summary judgment in FMLA wrongful termination/retaliation case)
  • Medco Health Solutions, Inc., et al. adv. Endia Harris-Child, Cause No. 4:03-CV-77; In the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, aff’d, 169 Fed. Appx. 913 (5th Cir. March 13, 2006). (Defense summary judgment in race discrimination retaliation case)
  • Alltel adv. Glenna McDaniel, Cause No. 00B-138; 392nd Judicial District Court of Henderson County, Texas. (Defense summary judgment in wrongful discharge/workers’ compensation retaliation case)
  • Quantum, Millennium, Equistar, and Michael Recknor and Thomas Kinzeler adv. Derrik Deberry, Case No. 99-039; 3rd Judicial District Court, Houston, County, Texas. (Defense summary judgment in wrongful termination/workers’ compensation retaliation and defamation case)
  • Samuels Jewelers, Inc. adv. In the Matter of the Arbitration between E. Peter Healey, No. 70 160 00034 01, before the American Arbitration Association sitting in Austin, Texas. (Defense verdict in a two-week arbitration brought by a former chief financial officer claiming wrongful discharge and breach of employment contract. Under the severance provision of his employment contract, the CFO was entitled to $1.2 million if he were terminated without good cause. The arbitrator found that the CFO’s incompetence rose to the level of gross negligence and awarded the defendant employer over $700,000 on its counterclaim based on the CFO’s failure to repay tax notes to the company)

Presentations

  • Speech, "DOLs Partnership With The IRS and Potential Impact on Employers," at Texas Labor & Employee Relations Consortium Seminar sponsored by Oliver Bell, Inc. (February 16, 2012)
  • Speech, "The Courts' Interpretation of The Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and The Evaporating Statute of Limitations," Employment Law Roundtable sponsored by Association of Corporate Counsel (November 19, 2009)
  • Speech, "Negotiation and Settlement Issues in FLSA Collective Actions," Employment Law Roundtable sponsored by Association of Corporate Counsel, Houston Chapter (May 14, 2009)
  • Speech, "Fair Labor Standards Act and Overtime Litigation in the Southern District of Texas," at Employment Law Seminar sponsored by Association of Corporate Counsel, Houston Chapter (April 20, 2006)

Publications

  • Member, Board of Editors, Wage & Hour Collective and Class Litigation, ALM Law Journal Press (2012). Definitive treatise on wage and hour litigation.
  • Chapter Author, "Chapter 14 - Arbitration Agreements," Wage & Hour Collective and Class Litigation, ALM Law Journal Press (2012).  Definitive treatise on wage and hour litigation.
  • Co-Author, “Tightening a White Collar Exemption, HR Magazine (December 2010)
  • "Department of Labor’s Reversal Requires Creative Approach to Compensation for Mortgage Loan Officers," National Mortgage Professional Magazine (June 2010)
  • Co-Author, Recent Trends in Defending Federal Wage & Hour Complex Litigation, Seyfarth Shaw LLP (2009)

Honors

  • Recognized as a leading lawyer in Labor and Employment in Texas in Chambers & Partners USA: America’s Leading Business Lawyers (2016–2017)
  • Selected as a Super Lawyer by “Super Lawyers,” a Thompson Reuters Service printed in Texas Monthly (2014–2016)