Nick Johnson, Partner, is an experienced litigator representing clients in the full spectrum of employment and business litigation matters, in addition to advising management and executive clients on HR compliance and commercial transactions.

Background

Nick represents employers and executives in all aspects of litigation before state and federal courts throughout Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Maryland covering a wide range of employment law, including discrimination, retaliation, harassment, and wage and hour collective actions. A large part of Nick’s practice is dedicated to post-employment litigation, both prosecuting and defending actions relating to the breach of non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, employee raiding, misappropriation of confidential information and trade secrets, tortious interference with contracts, and unfair competition. Nick also litigates business matters involving breach of contract, defamation, civil conspiracy, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, and other related business torts.

Nick’s advice and counseling practice includes advising employers and executives on restrictive covenants, regulatory compliance, employment contracts and HR policies, investigating employee complaints, conducting anti-discrimination training seminars, implementing management incentive plans, as well as preparing and negotiating severance agreements.

Prior to joining the firm in 2010, Nick worked with Judge Elizabeth McClanahan of the Court of Appeals of Virginia, the Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney Office, a large law firm in Charlotte, NC, the general counsel’s office of a federal agency, and was a member of the William and Mary Moot Court Team. He is currently admitted to practice law in Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Recognition and Certifications

  • “Rising Star,” Virginia Super Lawyers in Employment Litigation, 2015-2018
  • “Rising Star,” Washington DC Super Lawyers in Employment Litigation, 2015-2018
  • Named to the 2017 class of “Up & Coming Lawyers” by Virginia Lawyers Weekly
  • Named to Virginia’s “Legal Elite” by Virginia Business Magazine for 2015 and 2016
  • 34th Annual Trial Advocacy College, Achieved Unanimous Jury Verdict, January 2015

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 NICK JOHNSON OR BERENZWEIG LEONARD)

  • Represented defendant government contractor employer in lawsuit brought by job applicant claiming failure to hire and retaliation under USERRA; motion to dismiss granted on all counts and case dismissed with prejudice. Washington v. Coastal International Security, Inc., Civil Action No.: 8:17-cv-03311-DKC (D. Md. July 12, 2018).
  • Represented plaintiff real estate firm in lawsuit against anonymous online poster seeking redress for claimed defamatory online reviews; successfully proceeded under Virginia’s unmasking statute to identify claimed online poster and brought claims for tortious interference, defamation, and unjust enrichment; successfully defeated dismissal motion. Optime Realty LLC v. Walsh, Civil Action No. 2017-1966 (Va. Cir. Ct. 2018).
  • Defended former employee in lawsuit brought by former employer seeking early injunctive relief and alleging misappropriation of trade secrets and conversion of proprietary information. KeyPoint Government Solutions, Inc. v. McGinn, Case No. 1:17-CV-00899 (LO/TCB) (E.D. Va. 2018).
  • Represented defendant online auctioneer in third party complaint brought by financial institution alleging breach of contract, negligence, and negligent supervision seeking indemnification and reimbursement; motion to dismiss granted in full as to all counts. 2003 11th Street, LLC, et al. v. Mahogany, LLC, et al., Case No.: 2016 CA 005810 (D.C. Super. Ct. Jan. 9, 2017).
  • Represented defendant employer in lawsuit by an employee’s former employer claiming over $55 million dollars in damages alleging breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, conversion, violation of the Arkansas, North Carolina, and Virginia Uniform Trade Secrets Acts, intentional interference with business expectancies, and unjust enrichment; motion for summary judgment granted dismissing a seven-count complaint with prejudice; successfully preserved entirety of decision on appeal with affirmance in full by the Fourth Circuit. Integrated Direct Marketing, LLC v. Drew May and Merkle, Inc., 129 F. Supp. 3d 336, 339 (E.D. Va. 2015); No. 16 – 1032 (4th Cir. 2017). This decision was named by Virginia Lawyers Weekly as one of the most important decisions of 2015.
  • Represented defendant health insurance software provider in a copyright action; motion for summary judgment granted in full dismissing entirety of complaint with prejudice. Corepex Technologies, Inc. v. WH Administrators, Inc., 1:17-cv-00026 (E.D. Va. 2017).
  • Successfully defended against a motion for temporary restraining order by former employer alleging tortious interference, breach of a confidentiality agreement, civil conspiracy, and other related causes of action. Emerging Asia PTE, Ltd. v. Tinchev, et al., Case No. 1:17-cv-287 (D.D.C. 2017).
  • Represented defendant financial institution in lawsuit by plaintiff alleging causes of action under various federal statutes with respect to compliance with IRS notices of levy; motion to dismiss granted with prejudice on all counts and affirmed on appeal. Satterlee v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, et al., Case No. 15-1387-ABJ, (D.D.C. July 5, 2016), aff’d Case No. 16-5342 (D.C. Cir. Mar. 31, 2017).
  • Represented defendant employer in lawsuit by former employee alleging pregnancy discrimination under Title VII; lawsuit voluntarily dismissed with prejudice by former employee shortly after responding to complaint. Fair v. ThreatConnect, Inc., Civil Action No.: 1:16-cv-00914-CMH-IDD (E. D. Va. Jan. 3, 2017).
  • Represented defendant employer in lawsuit by former employee alleging discrimination and retaliation under USERRA; motion for summary judgment granted and affirmed on appeal. Washington v. Coastal Int’l Sec., Civil Action No.: 14-0331-DKC, 2015 WL 4396616 (D. Md. July 16, 2015), aff’d, 633 F. App’x 186, 2016 WL 758034 (4th Cir. 2016).
  • Represented defendant employer in lawsuit by former employee alleging disability discrimination and failure to accommodate under the ADA. Mannion v. Attain, LLC, Case No. CAL 16-07507, (Md. Cir. Ct. 2016).
  • Represented defendant director/corporate officer in lawsuit brought by her employer alleging breach of fiduciary duty and fraudulent concealment; demurrer granted without prejudice on all counts. Martin, et al. v. Frederick, et al., Case No. 16-1383 (Va. Cir. Ct., April 27, 2016).
  • Represented plaintiff government contractor in lawsuit against defendant teaming members concerning claims of fraud, conversion, unjust enrichment, breach of fiduciary duty, and breach of contract; secured a preliminary injunction enjoining the defendant teaming members from terminating the plaintiff government contractor from a joint venture and also enjoining the teaming members from soliciting and/or hiring any of plaintiff’s employees or contractors. Intercom Federal Systems Corporation v. Technical and Management Resources, et al., Case No. 2013-17672 (Va. Cir. Ct. 2014).
  • Represented defendant IT company in lawsuit by former contractor alleging breach of contract, including alleged breach of various restrictive covenants; successfully defended against motion for temporary restraining order. Top5, Inc. v. Core Point Consulting, Inc., Case No. 1:13-cv-1510-JFM, (D. Md 2013).
  • Represented defendant employer in lawsuit by former employee alleging racial discrimination and retaliation under Title VII; motion for summary judgment granted with prejudice on all counts. White v. Ameritel Corporation, Civil Action No. 8:10-cv-00929, (D.Md. 2011).
  • Represented defendant government contractor and former executive in lawsuit by former employer alleging breach of duty of loyalty and fiduciary duty, breach of contract, violation of Virginia’s Uniform Trade Secrets Act, and intentional interference with contract; successfully defended against a motion to expedite discovery with the court specifically finding that the former employer was unlikely to succeed on the merits and could not show irreparable harm. ForceX, Inc. v. Technology Fusion, LLC et al., Case No. 4:11-CV-88, 2011 WL 2560110, (E.D. Va. June 27, 2011).

Pro Bono Experience

  • Legal Services of Northern Virginia, Pro Bono Employment Law Project Volunteer

Presentations and Publications

  • “Top 10 Best Workplace Practices for Reasonably Accommodating Those with Mental Health Disorders,” IRMI, Employment Practices Liability Consultant (2018).
  • “The Rise of Mental Health Disabilities in the Workplace,” Virginia Lawyers Weekly (2017).
  • “Appeals 101: Preserving Your Trial Record and Maximizing Your Chances at Appeal,” Fairfax Bar Association, Moderator (2017).
  • “Newly Admitted Attorney Orientation Continuing Legal Education Course,” Fairfax Bar Association, Moderator (2016 and 2017).

Professional Memberships

  • Fairfax Bar Association (Employment and Business Law Sections)
    • Past Member, Board of Directors of Young Lawyers Section
    • Deputy Vice Chair of Employment Law Section
  • George Mason American Inn of Court
  • Federal Bar Association (Labor and Employment Law Section)
  • Virginia State Bar
  • Virginia Bar Association
  • District of Columbia Bar Association