Prior to joining Rutan, Suzanna L. Winslow worked as SVP, Strategic Human Resources and Employment Law at Banc of California in Orange County. Suzanna began her legal career at Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton, LLP in downtown Los Angeles, where she practiced as a labor and employment associate until 2016. In 2016, she worked as in-house counsel at Banc of California, before moving into the blended human resources and legal role. Suzanna rejoined the private practice of law at Rutan and brought with her the invaluable experience of having been the client.
- Wage and Hour Class Actions/PAGA: A significant amount of Suzanna’s litigation practice is spent defending employers in wage and hour class actions and Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) representative claims in state and federal court, and in administrative proceedings before the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. Among the claims Suzanna has defended are: allegations of meal/rest period violations, employee misclassification (exempt/non-exempt), improper bonus/commission plans, unpaid business expenses, uniform claims, reporting time pay, and timecard rounding. Suzanna has successfully defeated class certification motions and prevailed on summary judgment in class actions and PAGA claims.
- Employment Litigation: In addition to her class action/PAGA work, Suzanna has successfully represented employers in discrimination, retaliation, harassment, and wrongful termination cases in state and federal court, and in administrative proceedings before the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Suzanna has won on summary judgment in single plaintiff cases, and obtained a full defense verdict at arbitration.
General Employment Counsel
Suzanna also provides preventative counseling and guidance to businesses regarding all aspects of the employer-employee relationship, including:
- Assisting employers in conducting wage and hour self-audits (specifically pertaining to timekeeping and payroll practices) and in responding to government audits;
- Guiding employers through reduction-in-force programs, including compliance with state and federal laws such as the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN);
- Drafting employee handbooks, workplace policies, employment agreements, separation agreements, and employee counseling documents;
- Advising on leave of absence and disability accommodation issues;
- Providing on-site sexual harassment training pursuant to A.B. 1825; and
- Serving as a day-to-day resource regarding employment questions.
During law school, Suzanna worked as a Law Clerk in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California, and as a Judicial Extern for the Honorable Dean D. Pregerson, U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
Awards & Affiliations
Memberships & Associations
- National Human Resources Association, Board of Directors
- Public Law Center Advocates
- Big Brothers Big Sisters
- Los Angeles County Bar Association
- Orange County Bar Association
- Orange County Women Lawyers Association