Aaron Goldstein

Aaron Goldstein

Seattle P +1 (206) 903-5434 F +1 (206) 903-8820


Aaron helps his businesses find the quickest and most cost-effective solutions to their toughest employment problems.

Aaron brings a decade and a half of experience to companies’ quirkiest, thorniest, and most complex employment issues. Aaron also works with companies to develop policies and practices that are engines for business growth and that reflect the culture and values of the companies he represents. When Aaron’s clients are faced with litigation, he aggressively pushes their cases forward to an efficient resolution.

Aaron advises businesses and provides litigation expertise on all employment related matters, from trade secret disputes and non-competition agreements to discrimination and harassment claims, under Oregon, Washington, and federal law. Aaron represents clients before the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries, the Washington Human Rights Commission, the Washington Department of Labor and Industries, and the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Aaron represents companies in a wide variety of industries including, banking, financial services, computer software, semiconductor fabrication, retail, and medical supplies.

Education & Admissions

University of Southern California, Gould School of Law (J.D., 2003), Order of the Coif

Cornell University (B.A., Government, 2000)


  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon


Representative Litigation

  • Obtained an early employer favorable settlement enforcing non-compete agreements against several departing employees.
  • Assisted several clients with comprehensive employment policy reviews and drafting/revision of employment handbooks.
  • Defended complaint alleging disability discrimination and retaliation. Obtained a low dollar settlement before summary judgment phase of litigation.
  • Negotiated favorable early settlement of non-compete litigation on behalf of plaintiff corporation.
  • Successfully argued numerous pretrial motions and obtained a defense ruling on independent contractor status on behalf of defendant.
  • Defended BOLI complaint alleging age, race, and disability discrimination. Obtained dismissal.
  • Represented client in claims against former employees for breach of employment contract and misappropriation of trade secrets. Managed complex computer forensic investigation. Obtained temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction. Based upon computer forensic evidence obtained, convinced new employer and former employees to enter into a favorable settlement including a permanent injunction.
  • Defended client against final paycheck claims. Negotiated a favorable settlement.
  • Defended clients from claims by former employer alleging breach of employment contract, breach of fiduciary duty, usurpation of corporate opportunity, and misappropriation of trade secrets. Successfully negotiated favorable settlement.
  • Defended FMLA, OFLA, and ADEA claims under federal and Oregon law. Obtained summary judgment.

News & Resources


Hostile Work Environment Harassment: It’s Whatever a Jury Says it is
U.S. Employment in the #MeToo Era
The Americans with Disabilities Act: A Brief Primer on the ADA
Termination for Cause in the United States: It’s Whatever You Want it to Be
Can You Be Fired for Flipping off the President? Yes… Well… Maybe Not
Exempt or Non-Exempt Employee Under U.S. Law? Even U.S. Employers Frequently Get it Wrong
Damages: Making Anti-Harassment Policies Work in the United States
Is Trump’s DOL Pulling Back on Independent Contractor Classification Enforcement? Does it Matter?
Damages: The Dark Side of Having Employees in the United States
Hugging Can Create a Hostile Work Environment, Ninth Circuit Rules—Are Your Employees Aware?
Reductions in Force and the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act
Washington Employers, Be Careful When Demanding Arbitration Agreements from Current Employees
Dead Statutory Claims May Rise Again as Wrongful Discharge Claims, Washington Supreme Court Rules
Oregon Governor Kate Brown Signs “Fair Shot” Legislation into Law—Employers Beware!
Webinar Playback - Flexible Workplace Issues: Death of Telecommuting? Flex-Work as a Disability Accommodation, Wage & Hour Implications and Leaves
Recent Oregon Decision: A Warning on Independent Contractor Classification
Oregon “Economic-Realities Test” Case is a Mixed Bag for Employers
The Public Meaning Rule: Reconciling Meaning, Intent, and Contract Interpretation, 53 Santa Clara L. Rev. 73
“Recent NLRB Decisions Underscore Restrictions on Employers’ Social Media Policies,” Ball Janik Employment Law Report
“Trade Secret Laws: Oregon,” Practical Law Company
“U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Arbitration Provision Prohibiting Class-Action Relief,” Ball Janik Employment Law Report
“Ninth Circuit Allows Massive Gender Discrimination Class Action Against Wal-Mart,” Ball Janik Employment Law Report
“Evidence of Trade Practice in Government Construction Contracts,” Westlaw Construction Briefings, CONBRIEF NO. 2009-11
“What is a Trade Secret,” Cascade Business Journal

News & Press Mentions

12 Dorsey Lawyers in Seattle Selected for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2019
Chambers USA 2018 Recognizes Dorsey Lawyers and Practices in Seattle
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Recognized by Client Choice for Employment & Benefits
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Discusses ADEA
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Remarks on CEOs Rethink Interactions With Subordinates
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Remarks on Workplace Social Media Risks
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Discusses Disciplining Workers for Political Expression
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Comments on Cyclist Who Flipped Off Trump's Motorcade
13 Dorsey Lawyers in Seattle Selected for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2018
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Advises Caution on Using Trump Tweets at Work, HR Compliance Library
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Discusses Joking About Trump's Tweets
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Comments on DOL's Walk-Back on Contract Workers
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Remarks on Harassment Training and Reporting
KOMO Interview: Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Discusses Workplace Harassment
Corporate Hugging: A Field Guide
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Comments on: When the CEO is a Hugger
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Comments on Hugging in the Workplace
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Discusses Workplace Hugging Case
Dorsey Represents Underwriters in Tactile Medical IPO
Dorsey Partner Aaron Goldstein Remarks on Contraceptive Mandate Case
Dorsey Wins 8th Annual International M&A Award
Dorsey Wins 10th Annual M&A Advisor Turnaround Awards
Dorsey & Whitney Names New Partners
Dorsey Wins 14th Annual M&A Advisor Award for Real Estate Deal of the Year
The 2014 Employment Law Guide

Legal Writings

  • The 2014 Dorsey Employment Law Guide

Select Presentations

  • Speaker, Dorsey Labor & Employment Law Briefing: “Employment Law Update: A Look Back at 2017 and What’s New for 2018,” (February 27, 2018)
  • State and Federal Labor and Employment Laws Applicable to Tribes or Tribal Commercial Entities (June, 2014) Seattle University
  • FLSA – The Law We Love To Hate! (February 2014)
  • The Public Meaning Rule: Reconciling Meaning, Intent and Contract Interpretation (2012), 7th Annual International Conference on Contracts, Thomas Jefferson School of Law 
  • Ethical Challenges and Changing Technology (2011), National Business Institute 
  • Legal Challenges Facing Staffing Agencies (2008), Northwest Staffing Resources 
  • Avoiding Discrimination and Retaliation Claims (2007), Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries 23rd Annual Employment Law Conference


Chambers USA 2018 Leading Individual
  • Named one of “America’s Leading Business Lawyers” by Chambers USA (Labor & Employment), 2018
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America©, 2018-2019
  • Recognized by Client Choice for Excellence in Client Service – Labor & Employment, Washington, 2017 and 2018
Aaron Goldstein