Melissa Raphan
PEOPLE

Melissa Raphan

Partner
raphan.melissa@dorsey.com

Overview

MELISSA HELPS CLIENTS WITH A VARIETY OF EMPLOYMENT LAW MATTERS.

Melissa is a Partner and Chair of the Labor and Employment group. She represents employers in employment litigation matters including class actions, collective actions, multi-plaintiff actions and single plaintiff cases nationwide and in administrative settings, including state and federal agencies. She regularly handles arbitrations before the American Arbitration Association and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA). Melissa counsels employers on a full range of issues including performance management, selection and termination. She designs and delivers training on every aspect of the employment relationship. Melissa is a frequent speaker on employment law topics.

Education & Admissions

Boston College Law School (J.D.), Boston College International and Comparative Law Review
Notes and Comments Editor, 1986-87

Duke University (B.A.), cum laude

Admissions

  • Minnesota
  • Massachusetts
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota
  • Minnesota Supreme Court

Experience

Representative Work

  • Lead counsel for insurance companies in multiple jurisdictions handling claims of defamation, discrimination, Equal Pay Act, breach of contract, retaliation and tortious interference with contract
  • Lead counsel for financial services companies in multiple jurisdictions handling claims involving breach of contract, fraud/misrepresentation, retaliation and defamation (Form U-5)
  • Lead counsel for utility company in cases involving sexual harassment, gender discrimination in pay (Equal Pay Act and Title VII), retaliation and tortious interference with contract
Recent Representative Cases
  • Price v. Northern States Power (8th Cir.): Won affirmance of summary dismissal of three-count complaint for discriminatory pay practices under Equal Pay Act, Title VII and the Minnesota Human Rights Act
  • Brown v. Ameriprise (D. Minn.): Won dismissal of complaint with prejudice filed following discovery that plaintiff cut and pasted complaint in violation of Rule 11
  • Heykants v. U.S. Bank (S.D. Iowa): Won summary dismissal of retaliation claim under Title VII and the Iowa Human Rights Act
  • Tubbs v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (D. Minn.): Won summary dismissal of claims for disability discrimination and failure to accommodate under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Minnesota Human Rights Act
  • Boxdorfer v. Thrivent Financial (S.D. Ind.): Won summary dismissal of three-count complaint for defamation (based on Form U-5); breach of contract and intentional infliction of emotional distress
  • Pederson v. RBC (FINRA Arbitration): Successfully tried twelve-day FINRA arbitration on claims of gender discrimination, Equal Pay Act and breach of contract

Representative Clients


News & Resources

Articles

How to Handle a #MeToo Moment: Legal, Language and Cultural Tips
U.S. Supreme Court Affirms (Again) the Validity of Class Action Waivers In Employment Arbitration Agreements
Employers Beware: Tax Law Change Eliminates Tax Deductions Relating to Certain Settlements
Stop The Tolling: Minnesota Supreme Court Rules That an Employee’s Internal Complaint Tolls the Statute of Limitations under the Minnesota Human Rights Act (MHRA)
Federal Appeals Court Takes a Stand, Holding that Title VII Prohibits Discrimination on the Basis of Sexual Orientation
EEOC Subpoenas are Subject to the Abuse of Discretion Standard of Review
Don’t Get Hooked! W-2 Phishing Scams on the Rise During Tax Season
Supreme Court Nominee Neil Gorsuch An Encouraging Pick For Employers
U.S. Supreme Court Grants Certiorari To Evaluate Class Waivers Under the National Labor Relations Act
Minneapolis Mandates Paid Sick Leave
Pregnancy Discrimination: A Hot Topic in the Aftermath of "Young v. UPS"
Supreme Court Issues Decision in "Young v. UPS": A Duty To Accommodate Pregnant Employees?
Supreme Court Sides with DOL and Overturns Longstanding DC Circuit Ruling Under Administrative Procedure Act
Minnesota National Guard to Fight Ebola in Liberia
Employers: Take Precautions Now to Prepare for the Potential Ebola Threat
EEOC Developments on Religious Rights and Background Checks
Minnesota Enacts the "Women’s Economic Security Act" Imposing Many New Obligations On Employers
Minnesota Passes Law Raising Minimum Wage
EEOC Releases New Guidance on Religious Rights and Criminal Background Checks in the Workplace
2014 Minnesota Legislative Session Opens with Multiple Bills of Concern to Minnesota Employers
FINRA Rule 13204 Revision Overview

News & Press Mentions

54 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis Selected for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2019 and 2019 Lawyers of the Year
Super Lawyers Recognizes 36 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Chambers USA 2018 Recognizes Dorsey Lawyers and Practices in Minnesota
Dorsey Partner Melissa Raphan Comments on Bill that Lowers the Bar for Sex Harassment
Dorsey Partner Melissa Raphan Remarks on Whistleblowers' Protection
Dorsey Partner Melissa Raphan Comments on Failed Sexual Harassment Policies
Dorsey Partner Melissa Raphan Discusses Changes Corporations Need to Make in Wake #MeToo
Dorsey Partner Melissa Raphan Comments on Conyers Stepping Down
Dorsey Partner Melissa Raphan Comments on Sexual Misconduct Cases
51 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis Selected for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2018 and 2018 Lawyers of the Year
Super Lawyers Recognizes 36 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Chambers USA 2017 Recognizes Dorsey Lawyers and Practices in Minnesota
Chambers USA 2017 Recognizes Dorsey Lawyers and Practices
Dorsey Partner Melissa Raphan Weighs-in on EEOC Subpoena Ruling
48 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis and Fargo Selected for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2017 and 2017 Lawyers of the Year
Super Lawyers Recognizes 37 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Chambers USA 2016 Recognizes Dorsey Lawyers and Practices in Minnesota
Chambers USA 2016 Ranks Dorsey Lawyers and Practices
45 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis and Fargo Selected for Inclusion in "The Best Lawyers in America®" 2016 and "Best Lawyers of the Year"
Super Lawyers Recognizes 39 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Dorsey’s Minneapolis Office Named - Complex Civil Litigation Law Firm of the Year in Minnesota
Chambers USA 2015 Recognizes Dorsey Lawyers and Practices in Minnesota
Super Lawyers Recognizes 39 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Chambers USA 2014 Recognizes Dorsey Lawyers and Practices in Minnesota
Chambers USA 2014 Ranks Dorsey Lawyers and Practices

Select Presentations

  • Frequent speaker on variety of employment law topics including retaliation, constructive discharge, discipline and discharge, sexual harassment.
    • "Annual Construction Symposium," Dorsey & Whitney, May 2018
    • #youtoo: Why the Construction Industry Needs to Focus on Sexual Harassment
    • “Disciplining and Discharging the Problem Employee – Multiple Case Studies,” 2014 Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, May 2014
    • “Discovery Wars: A View From the Trenches and Above,” 2014 Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, May 2014
    • “L&E Review & Preview: A Look Back at 2013 and a Look Ahead to 2014,” Dorsey U, February 2014
    • “Annual Civil Litigator Short Course,” Minnesota CLE, January 2014
    • “Problem Employees,” Minnesota CLE, August 2013
    • “Salespeople – Can’t Live With Them – Can’t Live Without Them,” 2012 Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, May 2012
    • “How to Discipline & Discharge Without Disaster,” 2012 Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, May 2012
    • “Finding the (Legal) Tipping Point – How Discipline and Discharge Decisions Play Out in the Courtroom,” 2011 Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, May 2011
    • “Hindsight is 20/20: Ten Steps Every Employer Should Take When Making Discipline and Discharge Decisions,” Dorsey Employment Law Seminar, April 2011
    • Kidwell v. Sybaritic – Inside Counsel Whistleblower and Ethics Issues,” Dorsey U, August 2010 
    •  “View from the Top: Best Practices in Helping Women Advance in the Legal Profession and Why it Should Matter to Everyone,” Dorsey U, June 2010

Publications

  • Co-Author (Chapter 7) of The Federal District of Minnesota Civil Practice Deskbook, Minnesota CLE (2014)
  • Co-Author (Chapter 7) of The FMLA Handbook, Minnesota CLE, Inc. (2012)
  • Co-Author (Chapter 6) of Discipline and Discharge Handbook, Minnesota CLE, Inc. (2010) (updated 2014)

Industries & Practices

  • Banking & Financial Institutions
  • Emerging Companies
  • Healthcare
  • Labor & Employment
  • Legal Project Management
  • Securities & Financial Services Litigation & Enforcement

Professional & Civic

Professional Achievements

  • General Counsel, Minnesota Employment Law Council
  • Board Member, Children’s Theatre Company
  • Volunteer Attorney, Children’s Law Center
  • Duke University, Alumni Interviewer, Admissions Committee, 2010 – present

Accolades

Chambers USA 2018 Leading Individual  Ranked in USA Chambers 2017 Leading Individual  Ranked In - USA Chambers and Partners 2016 - Leading Individual   Ranked in Chambers USA 2015 - Leading Individual 

North Star Lawyer logo

  • Named one of “America’s Leading Business Lawyers” by Chambers USA (Labor & Employment), 2005-2018
  • Listed as a Woman Leader in the Law by Legal Leaders, 2018 
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America©, 2009-2019
  • Listed as a Minnesota Super Lawyer, 2006-2018
  • MSBA North Star Lawyer, 2013-2017
  • Dorsey & Whitney, Scales of Justice Award, 2014 
  • Dorsey Partner of the Year Award, 2014
Melissa Raphan