Partner Katie Lipp litigates labor, employment, business and construction matters for corporate and executive-level clients.

Katie also enjoys advising employees of their labor and employment rights in the workplace.

Background

Katie dedicates her legal practice to labor and employment litigation, representing employers, executives and employees against claims brought in Washington D.C. area state and federal courts, as well as in arbitrations and mediations. Katie has also been specially admitted in several other jurisdictions in litigation matters.

Katie has extensive experience negotiating collective-bargaining agreements and advising on labor issues in the workplace. She has successfully defended and raised claims involving workplace violence, retaliation, discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, and overtime pay. She is deeply familiar with all remedial statutes under federal employment law, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), and the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

A large part of Katie’s litigation practice pertains to post-employment litigation, both raising and defending claims involving fraud, non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, leaked confidential information, defamation, and civil conspiracy. She also regularly negotiates agreements outside of the courtroom, including agreements pertaining to terminations, severance pay and commercial leases.

Katie regularly provides training on best practices in the workplace. Some of her presentations pertain to internal workplace investigations, terminations, ADA accommodations, employer workplace drug policies, and immigration-related topics.

Before joining Berenzweig Leonard in 2011, Katie worked with both government and private sector entities. She worked with the U.S. Army’s war fighter contracting and Freedom of Information Act division, the Coast Guard’s Office of Procurement Law, and the Department of Veterans Affairs’ appellate litigation division. Katie has worked for several private law firms, and most recently worked for a boutique construction and government contracts litigation firm in Washington, D.C.

Recognition and Certifications

  • Achieved Unanimous Jury Verdict, 36th Annual Trial Advocacy College, January 2017
  • Listed in Virginia’s Legal Elite by Virginia Business Magazine, 2012

Recent Representative Matters

(DISCLAIMER: THERE ARE A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE, AND THE CASE RESULTS STATED BELOW DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE UNDERTAKEN BY KATIE LIPP OR BERENZWEIG LEONARD)

  • Achieved favorable severance for employee related to claims of labor law and disability law violations against employer (December 2017).
  •  Drafted new suite of template contracts for corporate dogwalking company (December 2017).
  • Successfully negotiated commercial lease for daycare facility’s third DC-area location, ensuring removal of personal guaranty language and favorable construction terms (December 2017).
  • Successfully resolved cease and desist threat against cybersecurity government contractor client related to hiring of employees, non-solicitation of customers and confidential information (December 2017).
  • Drafted severance agreement for cybersecurity government contractor client (November 2017).
  • Filed a Demurrer and Plea in Bar on behalf of corporate executive, defending against claims of fraud in the inducement, unjust enrichment, and conversion related to a Phantom Stock Buyout Agreement (November 2017).
  • Dismissal with prejudice of 4 out of 7 counts against employee client in action involving claims of constructive fraud and misappropriation of trade secrets. Seneca One Finance, Inc. et al. v. Cannell, No. 430310-V (Montgomery County Cir. Ct., July 13, 2017).
  • Successfully resolved cease and desist threat against cybersecurity government contractor client related to hiring of employee, a noncompete and non-solicitation of customers (June 2017).
  • Successfully resolved corporate construction client’s warranty claim against building owner related to fireproofing in ceiling (May 2017).
  • Drafted and negotiated buildout construction contract with general contractor for corporate client’s new office space (November 2016).
  • Dismissal of all counts against management-level client in action involving overbroad non-compete and non-solicitation provisions. Seneca One Finance, Inc. v. Bloshuk, No. RWT 16-CV-1848, 2016 WL 5851626 (D. Md. Oct. 6, 2016).
  • Successfully negotiated reduction of labor union forces by 63% to save corporate client hundreds of thousands of dollars on labor annually.
  • Dismissal of all counts filed against executive client involving a personal guaranty on a corporate line of credit. SunTrust Bank v. Advanced Business Concepts, Inc. et al., CL2016-07288 (Fairfax Circuit Court, July 1, 2016).
  • Achieved multiple six-figure settlements for construction company client involving immediate payout of funds owed for past due invoices.
  • Represented intervenor contract awardee in bid protest by incumbent contractor of $108 million Transportation Security Administration award of a Screening Partnership Program at Kansas City International Airport before the U.S. Court of Federal Claims; successfully defended award against multiple protest allegations. FirstLine Transp. Sec., Inc. v. United States, 119 Fed. Cl. 116 (2014), appeal dismissed (2015).
  • Represented contractor in breach of contract claim against the Department of Defense alleging wrongful termination for convenience of its contract to provide security services to support the Task Force for Business and Stability Operations in Iraq. TigerSwan, Inc. v. United States, 110 Fed. Cl. 336 (2013); TigerSwan, Inc. v. United States, 118 Fed. Cl. 447 (2014).
  • Achieved dismissal of all counts against government contractor alleging gender and racial discrimination, retaliation, and unequal pay. Cashwell v. Attain, LLC et al., 1:12-cv-522 (E.D.Va. 2012).
  • Represented incumbent contract awardee in bid protest of a $1.65 billion United States Marshals Services award of eleven separate contracts to provide court security officers for eleven judicial circuits before the GAO; successfully defended contract awards against multiple protest allegations. Inter-Con Sec. Sys., Inc.,B-403538.9, B-403538.8, 2012 CPD 245 (Jan. 10, 2012).
  • Successfully represented contractor employee proposed for debarment by the Air Force; filed legal memoranda and conducted discussions with the government’s debarring office; government terminated and withdrew the proposed debarment.

Pro Bono Experience

  • Legal Services of Northern Virginia, Pro Bono Employment Law Project Volunteer
  • Waterfowl Blind litigation matter, Prince William County Circuit Court (2014-2015) Represented waterfowl hunters in a licensing dispute regarding two non-riparian stationary waterfowl blinds in Pohick Bay. This matter was a case of first impression regarding duck blind licensing priority under Va. Code Ann. Section 29.1-345.

Presentations and Publications

  • Drug Testing in the Age of Legalized Marijuana, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, Panelist (Upcoming on May 18, 2018)
  • Internal Workplace Investigations, National Business Institute (March 2, 2018)
  • Government Shutdown Win is Cold Comfort to Contractors, Bloomberg Government Blog (February 6, 2018)
  • Marijuana Use Presents Conflicts for Government Contractors, PSC, Moderator (November 7, 2017)
  • Presenter, “Human Resource Law: What You Need to Know Now,” National Business Institute CLE (October 4, 2017)
  • Joined at the Hip? A Primer on the Joint Employment Doctrine, PSC (August 2017)
  • When Does Ex-Employee’s Use of LinkedIn Violate a Non-Solicitation Agreement? Virginia Lawyer’s Weekly (July 24, 2017)
  • What Does “Hire American” Mean for Government Contractors, PSC, Moderator (April 2017)
  • Labor Trends Impacting Employment Practitioners, FBA Employment and Labor Section, Moderator (November 2016)
  • Construction Contract Workshop, Stafford County, Examining Legal Issues and Contract Disputes (2015)
  • Joint Employer Doctrine Could Spell More Litigation Trouble for Construction Companies, DRI, The Critical Path, The Newsletter of the Construction Law Committee, Volume 19 Issue 3 (2015)
  • Contract Drafting and Online Defamation, Association of Bridal Consultants, 2013

Professional Memberships

  • George Mason American Inn of Court
  • Professional Services Council (PSC), Co-Chair, HR and Labor Committee
  • Fairfax Bar Association (Employment and Labor, Government Contracts, and Business Law Sections)
  • American Bar Association (Labor and Employment Law Section)
  • DC Bar, Labor and Employment Law Section
  • Virginia State Bar (Construction and Public Contracts Section)