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Labor and employment Star

Practice area:

Labor and employment

Andrew Melzer is a partner in the New York office of Sanford Heisler Sharp and Co-Chair of the firm’s Wage and Hour Practice Group. He manages all aspects of complex litigation from the initial investigation to pleadings, discovery, class certification, dispositive motions, trial practice, and settlement. He represents individuals in class and collective actions involving wage and hour, discrimination, and consumer protection claims. 

Andrew also represents individuals in employment and other civil rights matters. His recent matters include Brooke v. Aurora Behavioral Healthcare, et al., a Labor Code action on behalf of nurses and other staff at an acute psychiatric facility that resulted in a $2.85 million settlement and programmatic changes to hospital policies; Manlove et al v. Volkswagen, an age discrimination class and collective action; and In re Gateway Plaza Residents Litigation, an action by tenants of a NYC housing complex alleging breach of the implied warranty of habitability and other claims that culminated in a $10 million dollar cash settlement and structural improvements to the buildings to ensure habitable living conditions. 

Andrew was trial counsel in George v. Sonoma County, et al., a civil rights and wrongful death suit against Sonoma County, Ca., and numerous other defendants who refused to treat the plaintiffs’ son’s sickle-cell anemia crisis, which eventually led to his death while in custody. The case — which went to a jury trial against certain defendants – resulted in monetary settlements of more than $2 million, as well as an independent third-party study of and changes to the medical and correctional practices of the jail. Andrew also served as trial counsel in Perkins, et al. v. Southern New England Telephone Co., a wage and hour class action that settled post-trial, and played key roles in two related cases which settled for a combined $27 million, making this among the largest recent wage and hour settlements. Andrew also served as trial counsel in Ravina v. Columbia University, a gender discrimination and retaliation case which resulted in a $1.25 million jury verdict. 

Andrew has drafted briefs and petitions to U.S. Courts of Appeal, the United States Supreme Court, and the California Supreme Court. Prior to joining the firm, he was a staff attorney at an international organization in Zurich that restored lost and stolen assets to Holocaust victims and their heirs. 

From 2003 to 2005, he was a judicial law clerk on the Massachusetts Appeals Court for Chief Justice Christopher Armstrong and legendary jurist Benjamin Kaplan. In 2002, Andrew was a McCleary Law Fellow at the Human Rights Campaign, where he contributed to an amicus brief submitted by civil rights organizations in Lawrence v. Texas. Andrew has been recognized as a New York Super Lawyer and as one of Lawdragon’s 500 Leading Employment Lawyers. 

Updated Sep 2023