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Katharine O. Beattie

Member

[email protected]

+1.617.348.4445

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Kate’s work primarily involves litigation and counseling on federal and state labor and employment matters, including issues involving discrimination and harassment, leaves of absence, wage and hour disputes on an individual and class-wide basis, employee classification, wrongful termination, trade secret protection, and the enforcement of noncompetition and nondisclosure agreements.

Kate handles employment litigation before federal and state courts, arbitrators, and administrative agencies, including state fair employment and human rights agencies. She has also represented clients in cases pertaining to the False Claims Act, insider trading, and shareholder disputes.

Kate also counsels clients on a wide variety of employment issues, such as leaves of absence, independent contractor and employee classification, wage and hour law compliance, reasonable accommodation for disabled employees, employee discipline and terminations, and the protection of trade secrets and confidential information. She manages and conducts internal investigations of harassment and discrimination claims, wage and hour compliance issues, whistleblower claims, and allegations of ethics and code of conduct violations. She also provides training on anti-discrimination and anti-harassment policies and procedures as well as effective management practices.

Kate frequently provides employment and labor guidance on corporate merger and acquisition transactions, and regularly negotiates and drafts executive employment, separation, and related agreements on behalf of both publicly and privately held companies.

In her labor practice, she advises clients on a range of collective bargaining issues, and represents clients before the National Labor Relations Board with respect to unfair labor practice charges and union election proceedings.

Prior to rejoining the firm in October 2016, Kate was Vice President, Employment & Litigation Counsel at NTT DATA, Inc., a global IT services company which provides professional services, including consulting, application services, business process and IT outsourcing, and cloud-based solutions. In this role, which spanned across North America and in India, Kate managed commercial and employment litigations, provided human resources and business executives with employment law advice and counseling on all aspects of employment law, handled internal investigations, training, and compliance, and supported all phases of corporate merger and acquisition transactions.

From October 2006 through mid-2013, Kate was an Associate at Mintz. In law school, Kate served as a Special Assistant Attorney General in the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General’s Office, where she represented state agencies before state courts. Her experience also includes four years as a legislative aide in the Massachusetts House of Representatives.

Education

  • Boston College (JD)
  • University of Massachusetts (MSPA)
  • College of the Holy Cross (BA)

Recognition & Awards

  • Massachusetts Super Lawyers: Employment Lit: Defense (2018-2019)
  • Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly Top Women of Law (2019)
  • Board Member, Read to a Child, Boston Regional Board
  • Alumna, Boston Chamber of Commerce Women’s Leadership Program (2010 – 2011)

Recent Insights

News & Press

Viewpoints

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Part Two of the COVID-19 Roadmap Series: Creating a COVID-19 Operations Infrastructure

April 27, 2020 | Blog | By Katharine Beattie, Emma Follansbee

With the reopening of the economy on the horizon, employers are looking ahead to welcoming employees back to the traditional workplace. Business operations will look vastly different during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. In Part 2 of our Roadmap Series, we outline important operational planning steps and actions employers can take now to successfully and safely bring employees back to the workplace. Future posts in this series will address many of these issues more in-depth, so be sure to stay tuned.
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Updated: Summary of the U.S. Department of Labor’s FFCRA Regulations

April 22, 2020 | Blog | By Nicole Rivers, Michael Arnold, Katharine Beattie

The U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) has released its 124-page temporary regulations of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”).
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COVID-19: Handling a Positive Diagnosis in the Workforce

April 8, 2020 | Blog | By Katharine Beattie, Morgan G. Tanafon

As the COVID-19 outbreak continues to disrupt normal workplace operations, an increasing number of employers are facing the reality of employees testing positive for the virus – particularly in industries like healthcare, construction, transportation, or retail, where workers cannot necessarily telecommute. Employees may also report to work sick, or become sick at work, and show COVID-19 symptoms. Even though employers may be hoping for the best, it is best to have a plan for the worst. Employers should have clear plans and procedures in place to address confirmed or presumptive COVID-19 cases in the workplace, which will enable employers to take swift, appropriate actions to minimize risk for their employees and operations. The following are guidelines for steps to take in addressing these situations:
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This morning, Massachusetts Governor Baker issued Covid Order No. 13 which mandates that, starting Tuesday, March 24th at 12 P.M., all non-essential businesses and other organizations “shall close their physical workplaces and facilities (“brick-and-mortar premises”) to workers, customers, and the public,” due to evolving spread of COVID-19 in Massachusetts. This directive also orders that, in furtherance of Massachusetts’s COVID-19 response efforts, all non-essential businesses and organizations “are encouraged to continue operations where they are able to operate through remote means that do not require worker, customers, or the public to enter or appear at the brick-and-mortar premises closed by this Order.”
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Teleworking and the COVID-19 Outbreak

March 12, 2020 | Blog | By Katharine Beattie, Corbin Carter

One of the most pressing questions presented by the COVID-19 coronavirus is how companies can balance employees’ health and wellbeing (including both virus-related symptoms and associated anxieties) with the business’s operating needs. Although not a cure-all, the implementation of teleworking (i.e. remote working) is one way that certain equipped companies can keep their employees (and those they interact with) safe, without significantly impacting business operations. In this post, we highlight the benefits of teleworking, where possible, and suggest best practices for employers looking to institute temporary teleworking arrangements.
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In our last blog post on Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave (“MAPFML”), we reviewed the Department of Family and Medical Leave’s (the “Department”) draft regulations published in January 2019 and outlined some of the questions left unanswered by the then-current regulations.  Since January, the Department has held a number of listening sessions throughout the Commonwealth soliciting comments and feedback on the draft regulations.  On March 29, 2019, the Department published revised draft regulations for public comment and hearing.  The regulations are set to be finalized on July 1, 2019, which is also the effective date of MAPFML and the commencement date for payroll deductions from employee paychecks. 
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Employers Beware: Judge Greenlights Employee’s Privacy Lawsuit Over Dropbox Access

March 28, 2019 | Blog | By Katharine Beattie, Cynthia Larose, Jennifer Budoff

Many employers maintain policies limiting their employees’ expectation of privacy in the workplace, including policies that eliminate any expectation of privacy when using company-issued electronic devices. While employers may think that having such a policy would protect them from invasion of privacy claims under the Fourth Amendment or state law, a recent federal court decision may cause employers to think otherwise. This post examines this decision and provides best practices for avoiding issues with employees’ privacy interests.
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Over the past five years, parental leave policies have become increasingly commonplace among employers. Such policies are important tools for recruiting and retaining talented employees, and are important components of a positive and inclusive company culture. Meanwhile, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is paying increased attention to how these policies may violate discrimination laws by providing unequal benefits along gender lines. Recently, the EEOC has placed certain policies under scrutiny. Taking lessons from these cases and other recent developments, this post provides employers with tips for ensuring that their parental leave policies are compliant with relevant laws.

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Employers with workers in Massachusetts will have a lot to do between now and October 1, 2018, when reforms to Massachusetts non-compete laws go into effect.
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New Massachusetts Non-Compete Law Goes Into Effect October 1, 2018

August 14, 2018 | Blog | By Katharine Beattie, Jennifer Budoff

Non-compete reform has come to Massachusetts, with wide-ranging legal and practical implications for any employers with workers in Massachusetts. Employers have just six weeks to consider and adopt a new approach to non-compete agreements for their workforces.
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News & Press

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Mintz Member Katharine Beattie and Associate Corbin Carter were quoted extensively in an article published by EHS Today on legal considerations, best practices, and suggested policies for employers permitting telework to reduce the spread of the new coronavirus (COVID-19).
In this article published on LinkedIn by a representative of the Associated Industries of Massachusetts, the statewide association for Massachusetts employers, Mintz Member Katharine Beattie and Associate Brendan Lowd commented on a recent ruling in a Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court case that will affect the state’s wage and hour laws.
A June 13 article published by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly reported that Governor of Massachusetts Charlie Baker and lawmakers reached an agreement to delay the start of a payroll tax to fund Paid Family and Medical Leave benefits for all Massachusetts workers. The article quoted Mintz Member Katharine Beattie extensively in response to the development and on employer concerns related to the law.

“This delay will be welcome news for employers, especially small businesses and those companies exploring the private plan option,” she said. “Many unanswered questions remain, though, so hopefully the Legislature’s changes to the program design will clarify the open issues,” she said.
This feature article discusses a new Massachusetts law focused noncompete employment agreements. The article looks at how this differs from previous noncompete laws and what the new law means for employers. Member Kate Beattie is quoted providing commentary.
This column discusses the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Epic v. Lewis which addressed a long debated issue – can employers require that workplace disputes be litigated in individual arbitrations or should employees always have the option to bring class action claims in court. The column is authored by a team of Employment, Labor & Benefits attorneys including Member Kate Beattie and Associates Jennifer Budoff and Brendan Lowd.
Mintz advised GPB Capital on its acquisition of a majority equity stake in Westwood, Massachusetts-based Prime Motor Group. The acquisition by Capstone Automotive Group, an affiliate of GPB, expands the group’s footprint throughout New England.
Kate Beattie, a Mintz Member, is quoted in a National Law Journal article on regulating marijuana use in the workplace. The article pays particular attention to places where the legality is especially hazy due to conflicting federal and state legalizations.
This article highlights the arrival of Kate Beattie, who joins Mintz's Employment, Labor & Benefits practice as a Member. Kate most recently was with global IT services company NTT DATA, Inc. where she served as Vice President, Employment & Litigation Counsel.
Mintz has bolstered its Employment, Labor & Benefits Practice with the addition of Kate Beattie, who returns to the firm from global IT services company NTT DATA, Inc. Ms. Beattie served as a Mintz Associate from 2006-2013 and re-joins as a Member in the Boston office.

Events

Speaker
Speaker
Apr
30
2019
Speaker
Dec
13
2018

Wage and Litigation Update

MSADA CEO and CEFO Forum

Speaker
Nov
7
2018

Boston Employment Law Summit

One Financial Center, Boston, MA

Panelist
May
10
2018

ASA Law Conference

American Staffing Association

Speaker
Mar
29
2017

New England Construction Risk Conference

Willis Towers Watson

Newton, MA