Workplace Investigations: Tools You Can Use


Workplace Investigations: Tools You Can Use

Kai W. McGintee, Naomi N. Butterfield

Employee complaints of discrimination, harassment and retaliation in the workplace have been on the rise over the past years. Employers and administrators must be ready to respond to these types of claims. In the event of a lawsuit or a Federal or State audit, employers must also be able to show that they took prompt steps to investigate whether the complaint was founded and then be able to demonstrate that they took appropriate action based on the results of their investigation. An employer’s decision to investigate complaints also sends a strong message to its employees that it is committed to the fair treatment of its employees.

Knowing your responsibilities as an employer and what steps to take if misconduct occurs in the workplace are critical to reducing risk. Attorneys Naomi Butterfield and Kai McGintee discussed strategies for conducting investigations and selecting an investigator on the radio show, HR Power Hour, on May 17, 2014. Click here to listen to the podcast of the show.

A guide was also created by Naomi and Kai to assist employers and administrators in deciding when to hire an external investigator: “Investigating Misconduct –Don’t Derail the Process: Know When to Hire an External Investigator.”

Please call Naomi or Kai if you have questions on workplace investigations or other Labor and Employment issues.


Naomi Butterfield is based in the firm’s Manchester, New Hampshire office. Her experience includes preventing and defending clients from disability and discrimination claims, including Title IX, administration of personnel policies, FERPA and protection of records, bullying and sexual harassment, contract compliance, and campus and workplace safety. Contact Naomi: or 603 665-8841.

Kai McGintee is based in the firm’s Portland, ME office. She represents educational institutions and employers, and has litigated cases in state and federal court. Kai regularly appears before the ME Human Rights Commission, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Unemployment Compensation Commission. Contact Kai: or 207 228-7116.