Jackie C. Staple
Jackie Staple, a labor and employment attorney based in Jackson Walker’s Houston office, focuses on advising and counseling companies on employment law compliance and handling labor and employment transactional matters. Jackie has depth of experience drafting various employment, separation and release, and restrictive covenant agreements, as well as conducting due diligence of employment considerations in equity and asset transactions as a member of mergers and acquisitions deal teams.
As a trusted counselor, Jackie helps her clients navigate a variety of personnel matters, including:
- applicant and employee testing,
- background checks,
- discipline decisions,
- discrimination and harassment claims,
- disability accommodation and the interactive process,
- employee and independent contractor classification,
- employees with mental health concerns,
- joint employment issues,
- layoffs, furloughs, and the WARN Act,
- leaves of absence,
- protected, concerted activity,
- social media use by employees,
- unemployment compensation,
- wage and hour issues,
- workers’ compensation and retaliation,
- workplace misconduct, and
- workplace safety.
She conducts trainings in union and non-union workplaces, helping to empower managers in navigating these and other personnel matters on a day-to-day basis.
Jackie helps employers create and update sound policies and procedures, including multi-state employee handbooks, to comply with ever-changing employment laws. If an employee files an internal complaint, Jackie has experience serving as an independent investigator to interview witnesses and provide factual findings and recommendations.
When litigation is unavoidable, Jackie calls upon her background in education and the arts, as well as her litigation experience, to guide clients through administrative processes and prepare for trial. She has handled numerous administrative charges across the country filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, National Labor Relations Board, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and similar state agencies. Jackie has defended employers in lawsuits involving allegations of sexual harassment, discrimination, retaliation, wrongful termination, whistleblowing, breach of employee covenants, and breach of employment contracts. Specifically, she has handled matters related to Title VII, FLSA, ADA/ADAAA, ADEA, FMLA, NLRA, and various other state laws.
In addition to labor and employment matters, Jackie has handled a number of civil rights cases for counties and municipalities brought under Section 1983, often by pro se plaintiffs. Jackie regularly works with human resources professionals and in-house counsel across multiple industries but has focused knowledge of the manufacturing, transportation, and higher education industries, in part due to her work experiences at a university and at a chemical and transportation company.
B.S., cum laude, Case Western Reserve University
M.A., Case Western Reserve University
J.D., summa cum laude, Cleveland State University College of Law
- Cleveland State Law Review
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas
U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Southern Districts of Ohio
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
Labor and Employment Law
A sampling of Jackie’s notable matters include the following:
- Handled numerous EEOC charges for two different national insulation installation companies
- Achieved summary judgment on two race discrimination cases in federal court for a national financial services company
- Assisted global controls company in settling discrimination lawsuit brought by former in-house counsel
- Secured dismissal of hybrid Section 301 Labor Management Relations Act for major automobile manufacturer
- Reached early and favorable settlement of Family and Medical Leave Act claim for major automobile manufacturer
- Engaged in fact-finding in a labor dispute for a public library
- Handled many workers’ compensation administrative hearings and resulting litigation if the claimant appealed to court
- Advised a coal mining company regarding Mine Safety and Health Administration matters
- Drafted and reviewed dozens of employee handbooks and policies for employers in various industries, such as chemicals, energy and utilities, home improvement, poultry farming, private equity, religious institutions, snack food manufacturing, trucking and transportation.
- Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch (Woodward/White Inc.)
- Education Law, 2021-2024
- Labor and Employment Law – Management, 2021-2024
- Litigation – Labor and Employment, 2021-2024
- Texas Rising Star, Super Lawyers by Thomson Reuters, 2019-2023
Notable Speaking Engagements
- “Return to Work: The Scariest Process in HR,” Essential Tools for Managers Workshop, Texas Bay Area SHRM (September 2023)
- “Independent Contractor – The Legal Framework and Why It Matters,” Lawline (September 2023)
- “Return to Work: The Scariest Process in HR,” Gulf Coast Symposium on HR Issues Conference (July 2023)
- “Independent Contractor Under the Fair Labor Standards Act: Navigating Complexities Webcast,” The Knowledge Group (December 2022)
- “COVID-19 Labor and Employment Law Issues,” Appelbaum Training Institute – remote nationwide live broadcast (May 2021)
- “Protecting Women From Harassment in the Workspace,” Women in Trucking 2018 Accelerate! Conference and Expo, Frisco, Texas (November 2018)
- “Intensive Trial Advocacy,” University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Indiana, guest faculty (August 2021; August 2018; September 2016; February 2016)
- “Handling EEOC Charges,” National Business Institute (October 2017)
- “Employee Discipline Techniques that are Legally Compliant, Performance Appraisal Fundamentals to Stay out of Hot Water,” National Business Institute (May 2018)
- “Workplace Privacy and Employee Monitoring, Discipline and Firing,” National Business Institute (June 2017)
- “Legal Basics: What Entrepreneurs Need To Know,” Youngstown Business Incubator’s Women in Entrepreneurship — WE Launch, Youngstown, Ohio (May 2018)
In the News
- “Texas law requiring accommodations for pregnant workers goes into effect,” Houston Public Media (July 2023)
- “Is Change Overdue for Overtime Wage Law?,” Hart Energy (June 2023)
- “Six-Figure Income Plus Overtime Ruling Hits Energy Sector Pay,” Bloomberg Law (September 2021)
- Fresh Arts, Board of Directors, 2022
- Houston Association of Women Attorneys, Member
August 24, 2023Newsletters
View Jackson Walker’s August 2023 Diversity & Inclusion Newsletter, Perspectives.
August 17, 2023Attorney News
‘The Best Lawyers in America’ Honors 287 Jackson Walker Attorneys in 2024 Edition, Including 12 “Lawyers of the Year” and 80 “Ones to Watch”
The Best Lawyers in America has recognized 287 Jackson Walker attorneys across 5 offices and 82 specialty practice areas in its 2024 edition, including 12 Lawyers of the Year and 80 Ones to Watch. In this year’s guide, Jackson Walker saw the largest number of attorneys in the areas of Commercial Litigation (66 attorneys) and Real Estate Law (60 attorneys) and the addition of 35 attorneys as Best Lawyers.
July 19, 2023Podcasts
JW Fast Takes Podcast | ~9 minutes
Jackie Staple joins to discuss the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, a new law that requires covered employers to provide reasonable accommodations to a worker’s known limitations related to pregnancy, childbirth, or other related medical conditions, unless the accommodation will cause the employer an undue hardship.
July 5, 2023Speaking Engagements
Jackson Walker partner Jackie C. Staple will speak at the annual Gulf Coast Symposium on HR Issues Conference on Thursday, July 13, 2023. She will be joined by Troy MacEachern, Senior Vice President and Director Human Resources at Stellar Bank.
July 3, 2023Mentions
Houston Public Media featured insight from Houston attorney Jackie Staple regarding the PUMP Act, which expands on existing employer obligations and requirements under the Fair Labor Standards Act. “There will be a lot of questions I think, going forward, of what is a reasonable accommodation? I think we’re going to see a lot of cases where this is all getting hashed out,” Jackie noted.
June 22, 2023Insights
Pregnant Workers Fairness Act to Take Effect June 27, 2023, Following the PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act
With the “PUMP Act” (Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers Act) already in effect and the “PWFA” (Pregnant Workers Fairness Act) taking effect on June 27, 2023, is your company in compliance with these big changes? As background, the PUMP Act and PWFA were adopted when President Biden signed the 2023 Consolidated Appropriations Act in December 2022.
By Jackie C. Staple
June 7, 2023Mentions
G. Scott Fiddler and Jackie C. Staple shared insights with Hart Energy regarding the United States Supreme Court’s decision on Helix Energy Solutions Group, Inc. et al v. Hewitt and the Fair Labor Standards Act.
May 11, 2023Webinars
Join Jackson Walker and Insperity for the Spring Labor & Employment Law Seminar discussing current labor and employment law topics that might impact you and your company.
April 24, 2023Newsletters
View Jackson Walker’s April 2023 Diversity & Inclusion Newsletter, Perspectives.
March 23, 2023Attorney News
Jackson Walker is pleased to announce the selection of 63 attorneys to Thomson Reuters’ 2023 “Super Lawyers – Rising Stars” list, which recognizes only 5% of Texas attorneys who either are 40 years of age or younger or have been in practice for 10 years or less.