As a former Federal Law Clerk in the Eastern District of New York, Assistant District Attorney and senior lawyer at one of the nation’s largest and most prominent management-side labor and employment law firms, he has extensive trial experience in both state and federal court having successfully tried numerous cases in both venues.
Unlike many employment lawyers, Mr. Wigdor routinely tries cases in federal and state court as well as arbitrations at FINRA and the American Arbitration Association. Mr. Wigdor has been included in the New York Law Journal’s top verdicts in New York five times in the last eight years including the number one employment verdict in 2011, and the number two employment verdict and number one disability discrimination verdict in 2012. Some of Mr. Wigdor’s notable trial verdicts include:
- A $23.72 million arbitration award on behalf of the former Chief Financial Officer of Six Flags;
- A $7.5 million verdict in a disability discrimination case against Wal-Mart – one of the largest verdicts ever in a single plaintiff case under the Americans with Disabilities Act;
- An approximate $8 million verdict on behalf of the former Editor-in-Chief of the Source Magazine who was retaliated against after she complained of gender discrimination;
- A $3.35 million verdict on behalf of a former employee of Nassau County whose due process rights were violated;
- A $1.35 million verdict in a disability case where our client was terminated from his employer after disclosing he was HIV positive.
Due to his trial abilities and prior verdicts, Mr. Wigdor has been able to settle amicably hundreds of other matters for a combined value of well over $100 million.
On the management side, Mr. Wigdor won the dismissal of all claims brought by a woman alleging age and gender discrimination against her former investment banking employer. The arbitration lasted two weeks and the Panel dismissed the Claimant’s charges following the cross examination of Claimant and the motion for a directed verdict. Mr. Wigdor also secured the complete acquittal, after trial, of a Hollywood Video Store manager faced with a 25 count indictment and 135 years in prison. Additionally, Mr. Wigdor won an arbitration before FINRA on behalf of three senior traders on Wall Street whose employer committed fraud and breach of contract.
Two peer review studies, The Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers, have recognized Mr. Wigdor as one of the nation’s leading labor and employment lawyers. Mr. Wigdor has also received an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell indicating that his peers rank him as one of the preeminent lawyers in the labor and employment field. Mr. Wigdor has also been given the highest rating, a 10.0 (superb), by Avvo, a well respected lawyer rating agency.
Mr. Wigdor’s handling of numerous high profile cases has resulted in frequent appearances on national television and being quoted in world-wide publications. Recently, Forbes Magazine documented in a cover story Mr. Wigdor’s representation of a group of women in a gender discrimination class action against Citigroup. In connection with that representation, Mr. Wigdor coined the phrase “Recessionary Discrimination” to characterize the growing trend by companies of using mass lay-offs to cover-up the discriminatory treatment and/or impact on groups of women, people of color and those over 40.
Mr. Wigdor has been interviewed on Nightline, Good Morning America, The Today Show, CNN American Morning, Your World with Neil Cavuto and many other television shows including regular appearances on CNBC, ABC News, CBS News and NBC News. Mr. Wigdor is frequently quoted as a legal expert in newspapers and magazines including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, London Times, Daily Telegraph, London Independent, USA Today, New York Post, Daily News, EuroMoney and Der Spiegel.
Mr. Wigdor is also a lecturer, editor and author of articles on employment and criminal related subjects, having been quoted frequently in the New York Law Journal, presenting lectures to various Bar Associations and publishing articles in numerous journals. Mr. Wigdor has recently given lectures at both Oxford and Cambridge Universities (England) on the Strauss-Kahn case and the rights of sexual assault victims. Mr. Wigdor also recently spoke at a Human Resources seminar on the topic of retaliation in the workplace and is scheduled to speak at the New York County Lawyers Association and the American Conference Institute. In May 2013, at the request of The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ Task Force, Mr. Wigdor testified on the Restoration of Rights and Status After Conviction. Mr. Wigdor has the rare qualification to practice law in both the U.S. and U.K. as a qualified solicitor in England and Wales. Mr. Wigdor’s practice focuses on litigation and counseling of individuals and companies in connection with a wide array of employment issues, criminal matters and international issues:
- a group of women in a gender discrimination case against Citigroup;
- the former CFO of Six Flags;
- the former CEO of one of the largest environmental remediation companies;
- a group of people of color in a race and national origin claim against Bank of America;
- individual women in an alleged gender discrimination class action complaint against Dresdner Kleinwort;
- the former Tour Manager of ‘NSYNC’ in a lawsuit against ‘NSYNC’;
- numerous investment bankers against their Wall Street employers and in conjunction with negotiating employment and severance agreements;
- several employees in claims of race discrimination against Radianz, Reuters and Equant;
- a marketing expert in an age discrimination case against a hedge fund; and
- several celebrity models, actors, actresses and well-known chefs in various legal disputes.
On the management side, Mr. Wigdor has represented:
- a large cell-phone company in a purported class action brought by the EEOC;
- one of the largest investment banks in South America in defending a purported claim of sexual harassment;
- a world-wide express delivery service in several claims of discrimination;
- a number of firms in the financial services and public relations industry in claims of discrimination and violations of the wage and hour laws; and
- several New York City restaurants involved in wage and hour litigation.
Mr. Wigdor had the honor of serving as a Federal Law Clerk to United States District Judge Arthur D. Spatt and was appointed as an Assistant District Attorney in Suffolk County, New York where he investigated, prosecuted and tried hundreds of criminal matters ranging from robberies and burglaries to complex schemes to defraud. Mr. Wigdor was rapidly promoted to the Complex Litigation Bureau where he both litigated and supervised the litigation of white collar — complex financial crimes, including organized crime, bank fraud, insurance fraud, tax evasion, identity theft and elder abuse. Because of the breadth of his criminal litigation experience, Mr. Wigdor was appointed under the Federal Criminal Justice Act to serve a three year term, in the Eastern District of New York, as a criminal defense lawyer in selected criminal cases.
Prior to founding Thompson Wigdor LLP, Mr. Wigdor was a senior lawyer in the Labor and Employment Section of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP where he litigated cases on behalf of Fortune 500 clients on issues relating to a broad range of U.S. and U.K. labor and employment matters. While at Morgan Lewis, Mr. Wigdor headed the international labor and employment practice; regularly performed sexual harassment prevention and diversity training, including training to television commentators and financial executives; and acted as co-counsel in the successful defense of one of the nation’s leading defense industry contractors accused of age discrimination before a jury trial in federal court.
Based upon Mr. Wigdor’s expertise in labor and employment law, he was appointed to the Arbitration Panel of the Eastern District of New York. Mr. Wigdor has also held legal positions at the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, the United States Senate, the Washington, D.C. Corporation Counsel and the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. Mr. Wigdor received his undergraduate degree from Washington University in St. Louis, cum laude, where he was a member of the Varsity Tennis Team; a Masters Degree from Oxford University in England; and his Juris Doctor from Catholic University School of Law in Washington, D.C., graduating in the top of his class. Mr. Wigdor was a Senior Staff Member on the Catholic University Law Review and an Editor of the Oxford International Review. While at Oxford, Mr. Wigdor received a coveted “Full-Blue,” was a member of the Vincent’s Club and was the President of his College Student Body. Mr. Wigdor is an active alumnus at Washington University, Catholic University and Oxford, hosting annual events at his offices for all three and as a member of the Washington University Alumni and Parent Admissions Program. Mr. Wigdor was also recognized by St Cross College, University of Oxford as alumnus of the year for his contributions to the College.
Mr. Wigdor is an active and philanthropic member of his community. Mr. Wigdor serves on the legal committee of the Forest Hills Gardens Association and was a former member of the Board of Trustees at the Kew Forest School. He is also an active member of the Forest Hills Men’s Club, the Oxford & Cambridge University Club in London, the West Side Tennis Club and the Engineers Country Club. Mr. Wigdor has had the privilege of managing several baseball teams in the Forest Hills Little League and coaching a basketball team at the Forest Hills YMHA and Forest Hills Community House. Mr. Wigdor is a former member of the Governing Committee of the Oxonian Society, a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing heads of state to address its members. Mr. Wigdor was also elected to the International Tennis Club of the United States (“IC”). In addition, Mr. Wigdor was selected as a member in both the Alexander Hamilton and Theodore Roosevelt Inns of Court wherein he worked together with other selected lawyers and state and federal judges in the analysis of current legal issues.