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Karen S. Aframe is a member of Bernstein Shur’s Labor and Employment Practice Group. Karen’s practice includes:
• Providing counsel to employers in all matters of labor and employment law, including compliance with New Hampshire, Massachusetts and federal wage and hour and discrimination laws.
• Drafting personnel policies and handbooks that comply with current law and industry best practices.
• Developing strategies for handling related issues ranging from hiring to layoffs and discharges.
• Navigating workplace issues related to the Family and Medical Leave Act, disability accommodations and performance management.
• Drafting and negotiating offer letters, employment and severance agreements, and non-competition and legally compliant confidentiality agreements.
• Developing electronic communications and social networking policies to maximize workplace efficiency and protecting the employer’s interests.
• Reviewing employee wage-hour classification and drafting independent contractor agreements.
• Representing employers in matters such as harassment and discrimination claims, wrongful terminations, wage and hour inspections, and unemployment claims, before state and federal courts, administrative agencies, such as the New Hampshire Human Rights Commission, Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, EEOC, as well as before and arbitrators and mediators.
• Representing employers faced with NLRB investigations of unfair labor practice charges, and providing guidance on union avoidance strategies.
Karen is a frequent speaker on employment issues related to sexual harassment and discrimination, internal investigations, performance management, GINA (Genetic Information and Non-Discrimination Act), FMLA, ADA, and social media in the workplace, and provides training to management on these topics.
Karen has expertise working with clients ranging from start-up technology companies to established financial institutions and has the ability to connect with a client’s culture, regardless of its size or industry. In addition to corporate clients, Karen has extensive experience representing non-profit organizations, healthcare providers, as well other social services providers.
Karen serves as chair of the New Hampshire Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Section. Prior to joining Bernstein Shur, Karen practiced employment law with a large firm in Boston and worked with the Disabilities Rights Center, Inc. in Concord, New Hampshire.
During law school, Karen interned with Greater Boston Legal Services and the U.S. District Court. Before attending law school, she was a paralegal specialist at the United States Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division. In 1995, she was awarded the Civil Rights Division Special Achievement Award for her legal assistance in United States v. Williamson (N.D. Ala. 1995).
JD, Northeastern University School of Law, 1999
BA, Stanford University, 1994
Admitted to practice:
States of New Hampshire and Massachusetts
District of Columbia
New Hampshire Bar Association (Chair, Labor & Employment Section)
Woodside School (Board of Directors)