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V. Jonas Urba

V. Jonas Urba

Employment Law Reality Check
  • Employment Law, Arbitration & Mediation
  • Massachusetts, New York
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Summary

I'm an employment lawyer with 30 years of experience based in the greater New York City area.

I have worked as a state prosecutor and as an in-house, human resources attorney. I have been associated with a number of small law firms in addition to a 200 lawyer firm. I was the human resources director conducting internal investigations for a professional employer organization. I have founded and directed 3 law firms in 3 different states.

I am very familiar with the financial services, health care, union represented civil service, manufacturing, higher education, and sales industries. In addition to federal court litigation, mediation, and arbitration I help employees and small employers with the application of employment policies and procedures. More employers choose to apply covenants not to compete, enforce trade secrets and duties of loyalty, in order to protect legitimate business interests.

One of the most challenging things we do as employment lawyers is the reality check. We tell employees that unless they work for the government, are covered by union collective bargaining agreements, or have entered private employment contracts, their employers don't need a reason to fire them. That's correct. An employer does not have to give most employees any reason when firing them. Many employees find this surprising.

I search for sufficient facts, usually proven with circumstantial evidence, to determine whether potential clients might have suffered discrimination prohibited by Title VII, the ADA, FMLA, ADEA, EPA, FRA, PDA, or unpaid wages covered by the FLSA or New York's Labor Laws.

Practice Areas
  • Employment Law
  • Arbitration & Mediation
Fees
  • Free Consultation
    Initial telephone conference.
  • Credit Cards Accepted
    All major credit cards.
  • Contingent Fees
    The facts of each case determine whether contingent fees are appropriate. Litigation always costs money and someone must pay. The type of case and amount of potential damages determine fees.
  • Rates, Retainers and Additional Information
    Fees can be flat fees, hourly fees, contingent fees, or hybrid agreements. They can include reduced hourly and multiple other combinations.
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
Colorado
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Florida
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Massachusetts
New York
United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
Languages
  • English: Spoken, Written
Professional Experience
Labor and Employment Attorney
Urba Law PLLC
- Current
My practice is limited to labor and employment law matters. I litigate in federal court, represent clients at administrative proceedings, and have been certified as a court mediator. Most clients do not wish to spend years in court although sometimes that is the only option.
Discrimination Attorney
Law Offices of Jonas Urba, P.A.
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Represented the most discriminated segment of the population at that time.
Labor and Employment Attorney
Modern Business Associates, Inc.
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EEOC, Title VII, Department of Labor, sexual harassment, employment discrimination, employer policies and procedures, unemployment, internal and external employee conduct investigations
Labor and Employment Attorney
Fowler White Boggs Banker, P.A.
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Represented carriers and employers.
Labor and Employment Attorney
Miller Kagan Rodriguez & Silver, P.A.
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Represented carriers and employers.
Labor and Employment Attorney
Law Office of Jonas Urba, P.C.
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Employment discrimination, EEOC, Title VII, ADA, severance agreements, agency administrative actions, unemployment, sexual harassment, FLSA, FMLA
Labor and Employment Attorney
McCrea & Keck, LLC
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Represented carriers and employers.
Assistant General Counsel
State of Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation
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Civil servant. Represented management and human resources in agency administrative actions, public employees relations commission actions, federal, state, and administrative forums.
Labor and Employment Attorney
Law Office of Joseph A. Vassallo, P.A.
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Represented injured and disabled employees at administrative agency actions and drafted documents to resolve claims.
Assistant State Attorney
20th Judicial Circuit Office of the State Attorney
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Prosecuted criminal cases.
Education
Valparaiso University School of Law
J.D. (1988) | Law
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University of South Florida
MBA (1983) | Business Administration
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Indiana University - Indiana University-Bloomington
B.S. (1980) | Psychology, Business Administration
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Awards
Jonas Urba mentioned for helping a pregnant Planned Parenthood employee
New York Times
The New York Times published a story about pregnant employees losing their jobs at Planned Parenthood. The Times mentioned that I had resolved such a claim.
Highest Scholastic Achievement
Valparaiso University School of Law
Professional Associations
National Employment Lawyers Association, New York
Member
Current
New York City Bar Association
Member
Current
New York State Bar Association # 4974333
Member
Current
Westchester County Bar Association
Member
Current
Publications
Articles & Publications
The Glory Days of PUBLIC SERVICE
Westchester Lawyer magazine
Do Statutory Rights Mean What They Say?
Florida Bar - Administrative Law Section Newsletter
Speaking Engagements
Strategies to Protect Non-Traditional Families, University of Miami Law School / NCLR, Miami, Florida
NCLR
Florida continuing legal education workshop / seminar. Panel member / speaker.
Certifications
Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Civil and County Court Mediator (2004 - 2010)
Florida Supreme Court
Websites & Blogs
Website
The Urba Law Firm
Blog
Videos
Employment Law Reality Check Sales Professionals Losing Jobs

Sales professionals in their 50s and 60s are losing their jobs. Many think age discrimination but an employment lawyer might uncover something else.

Employment Law Reality Check Probationary Teachers Administrators

Probationary teachers and administrators may have Taylor Law issues. Collective bargaining agreements should be reviewed.

Employment Law Reality Check Physician Nurse Practitioner Non compete

Physician and nurse practitioner non-compete agreements. You likely have one. Ask an employment lawyer to review it with you.

Employment Law Reality Check Switching Lawyers

Switching employment lawyers. Can you do that if you now feel you made a mistake? What to consider.

Employment Law Reality Check Severance Pay in New York

No law requires severance pay in New York. Many employees think there are guidelines when none exist in most cases.

Employment Law Reality Check Stress at Work

Stressed at work? Don't act before discussing your specific facts with employment lawyers.

Employment Law Reality Check New York City Human Rights Law 2

New York City's Human Rights Law gives employees much more protection. If you work in any of the 5 Boroughs you are probably covered.

Employment Law Reality Check Media Attention

Media attention can be a bad thing. Employees sometimes don't consider the down side. Some things to consider.

Employment Law Reality Check Workplace Bullying

Bullying laws don't exist in most workplaces. Your employer doesn't have to be nice to you and they don't have to give you a reason before firing you.

Legal Answers
333 Questions Answered

Q. I need to know what New York States requirements are for Pharmacy Technicians on a name tag
A: Regardless of what the state law says if your employer requires the first initial of a last name on a name tag I don't see how you might object? Unless you don't want to work there any more. Common laws live in New York. Those are unwritten laws such as Faithless Servant Doctrine, Master Servant Doctrine, and Duty of Loyalty to your employer. All good, all applicable, all enforceable regardless of written or not.
Q. If the EEOC complaint does not have certain parties named, does that mean I cannot add them to a summons and complaint
A: You need to amend your Form 5 EEOC charge while it is still at the EEOC or file a new one ASAP if you have not missed the filing deadline. Adding parties regarding claims that the EEOC has jurisdiction over is not a good idea. You might miss a statute of limitations deadline and/or the Court might dismiss for untimeliness or failure to exhaust administrative remedies.
Q. Is my boss liable if he ignores my health issues and I get sick at work?
A: You must be able to perform the essential functions of your job with or without a reasonable accommodation. If you are disabled ask your physician whether you require an accommodation. But be careful if the accommodation causes an undue hardship for your employer which would permit them to replace you. A workers compensation lawyer would be better able to address a possible comp claim. That would likely require some unusual or extraordinary event at work related to any health issue you might sustain. Challenging. Consult an employment lawyer if you think this will result in your job loss before that happens. Unless you suffer as a disabled person who needs an accommodation they may not need a reason to let you go without a union, a contract or a government employer to possibly protect you?
Q. Can a business withold an employee's earnings?
A: I think you meant to write "restitution." If you pay anyone more than they are entitled to they will need to pay you back. You accidentally hand the McDonalds clerk a 50 instead of a 20 but only get change for a 20 they do not get to keep the excess unless they honestly did not see that you handed them a 50 (which is highly unlikely). Probably theft. Same goes if you provide services to someone who knows you are providing services to them and they acknowledge that you are providing services to them while you are providing those services to them, knowing that you expect payment, you will be entitled to recover the reasonable value of the services you provided, which the receiver knew you were providing, but remained silent while you provided such services, regardless of whether you provided those services by accident.
Q. If i get fired and i dont know the reason, can i go back and ask why i got fired?
A: Always a good idea. If you apply for unemployment the employer might claim you quit. So make sure you tell the employer this was not your choice and remind them that you needed and wanted the job. Ask why me?
Q. Hello I live in Albany NY and I need either a Pro-Bono attorney or Contingent Employment Attorney. Please Help !
A: #1. You definitely need a work comp lawyer. Retain one now! You only owe $ if they recover $ for you so it makes no sense not to. #2. The EEOC or NYS DHR will determine whether you have enough facts to support discriminatory termination. Recording or no recording it's a fact issue. No case is a slam dunk. You need to call employment lawyers many of them and discuss your facts now. Don't wait to receive a notice of right to sue letter. At that point you will only have 90 days to retain a lawyer and that may not be enough time. We might take a contingent fee case. But your recording will not be the reason for doing so. The injury, how it happened, what you did, where you went, who you spoke to, what you said on multiple days over several days or weeks will determine whether a contingent fee is an option. A skilled lawyer can probably determine that by speaking to you on the phone for 15 to 30 minutes. If you are still talking after 45 minutes maybe it's a claim for a contingent fee? Call employment lawyers many now! It does not really matter where they are so long as they litigate in the federal courts of New York State.
Q. Can they legally do this?
A: If you gave 2 weeks notice of your resignation your employer has to pay you for 2 weeks or they risk losing your presumed application for unemployment benefits. If you apply for unemployment benefits and are denied there will be an analysis of gross misconduct to decide whether you qualify. Quitting a job usually results in denial of unemployment benefits. However if notice is given to your employer and the employer fails to pay for the notice period then your willful resignation shifts to the employer's willful failure to pay for the notice period. However, if your employer can show that it would have fired you anyway for gross misconduct then the employer will not have to pay for any unworked hours by you nor will it be responsible for unemployment benefits. Retain an employment lawyer now! What might appear to be a rudimentary analysis can become a time consuming and extended nightmare. Unless you already had another job lined up, and the above becomes more or less irrelevant.
Q. Can I sue my place of employment for pain and suffering due to a fall while I was pregnant
A: Consult with personal injury lawyers. Maybe a third party lawsuit? Constructive discharge is very difficult to prove. You were either able to perform your job duties with accommodation or were not. Did you request any type of reasonable accommodation and if it was reasonable and not an undue hardship on your employer why resign?
Q. I was fired from my job 2 months ago and i believe i was discriminated against. What should I do?
A: Every plaintiff has to prove discrimination. That is done with a plausible theory of severe or pervasive discriminatory conduct. This sounds very lawyer-like; I know. But that's why you really need to retain an employment lawyer before filing charges or a complaint. You can file charges with the EEOC within 300 days or a complaint with the NYS Division of Human Rights within a year of an adverse employment action (your firing). But if you do so just with the facts you provided in your post chances are pretty good that it will go no further than your filing. Retain an employment lawyer! Most employment lawyers will invest many hours helping you uncover the important facts and spend lots of time drafting your charge or complaint. The government agencies are very good but most are very overworked and understaffed. It's not likely that a government agency will be able to invest the hours and hours into your claim that an employment lawyer would need to invest. Of course an employment lawyer will need to hear discrimination, which can be proven, from you during a conference or what you might feel is an interview. Pretext is not always easy to show and if you are unfamiliar with that term it's probably time to retain an employment lawyer. THIS IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE!
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Urba Law PLLC / Employment Law Reality Check
520 White Plains Rd., Ste. 500
Tarrytown, NY 10591
USA
Telephone: (914) 366-7366
Cell: (914) 826-7721
New York City Bar Association
42 West 44th Street
3rd Floor
New York, NY 10036
USA
Telephone: (914) 366-7366