A native of the New Haven area, Joshua Goodbaum represents individuals in litigation and negotiation, with a particular emphasis in employment, civil rights, and appeals. He has represented clients in a variety of courts, from local trial courts to the Supreme Court of the United States, in matters ranging from constitutional law to contract disputes.
Josh’s experience in Connecticut employment law runs the gamut, from discrimination (on the basis of race, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, religious creed, marital status, pregnancy, or national origin) and sexual harassment, to wrongful termination, retaliation, non-competition agreements, and contract disputes. He has particular knowledge in issues involving employee compensation, including claims for unpaid overtime and commissions.
Josh also enjoys assisting his fellow lawyers with appeals and other complex legal writing projects, regardless of the subject matter. He learned to write from Associate Justice Neil M. Gorsuch of the Supreme Court of the United States, from whom Josh served as a law clerk when Justice Gorsuch was a Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. Josh’s writing has appeared in a variety of legal publications, including the Harvard Law Review.
In 2017, Josh was elected to serve as Chair of the 650-member Labor & Employment Law Section of the Connecticut Bar Association. He also serves on the Executive Committee of the CBA’s Federal Practice Section and is a proud member of the Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association.
Prior to joining Garrison, Levin-Epstein in 2011, Josh worked at a large corporate firm in Washington, DC, and interned at Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) in Boston, the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, and the U.S. Department of Justice.
Josh earned his law degree magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he was a Supervising Editor of the Harvard Law Review and Co-Chair of the Public Interest Auction. He went to college at Yale University, graduating magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, with a degree in history. Between college and law school, Josh worked for an industrial supply distribution company in Chicago, IL.
In his spare time, Josh enjoys choral singing, playing tennis, and cooking freezable foods.
- Co-counseled with Nina Pirrotti and renowned civil rights attorneys Gloria Allred and Nathan Goldberg in representing five students and alumnae who alleged that their university’s indifferent response to reports of sexual assault and harassment violated Title IX. Case settled for $1.285 million. The university made significant positive changes in its procedures for responding to reports of sexual violence.
- Principally drafted the appellate brief that resulted in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirming a jury verdict of nearly $2 million in damages for our client, a scientist who blew the whistle on dangerous practices at Pfizer’s Groton, CT laboratory. See McClain v. Pfizer, 505 F. App’x 59 (2d Cir. 2012).
- Represented senior executive in age discrimination case against large Connecticut employer. Case settled prior to trial for approximately $2 million.
- Principally drafted the appellate brief that resulted in the Connecticut Appellate Court affirming a jury verdict of $307,000 for our client, Jeffrey Nelson, after his former employer, Tradewind Aviation, defamed him by insinuating without any proof that he had been terminated for cause and used illegal drugs. See Nelson v. Tradewind Aviation, 155 Conn. App. 519 (2015). Subsequently drafted successful opposition to defendant’s petition for certification to the Connecticut Supreme Court. See 316 Conn. 918 (2015) (denying petition).
- Represented financial executive in litigation over scope of non-competition agreement. Following litigation, the parties agreed on a minimally restrictive agreement which did not effectively limit our client’s employment opportunities.
- Represented several dozen skilled service providers, including massage therapists and aestheticians, in wage and hour dispute with international spa company. The case was resolved to the parties’ satisfaction.
- Represented insurance agent for national insurance company under Connecticut free speech statute after agent’s contract was not renewed following his complaints about fraudulent insurance practices. Case settled for $350,000.
Representative Speaking Engagements
- Defending LGBT Workers from Discrimination, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference (Jun. 2017)
- Transgender Issues in the Workplace, Connecticut Bar Association Annual Conference (Jun. 2017)
- CHRO: How to Bring or Defend an Employment Case, Connecticut Bar Association Young Lawyers Section (Apr. 2017)
- The Annual Labor & Employment Law Update, Connecticut Bar Association Labor & Employment Conference (Mar. 2017)
- Advocating for LGBTQ Elders, Connecticut Bar Association Elder Law & Human Rights Sections (Feb. 2017)
- Campus Sexual Assault Investigations: A (Very Brief) Introduction, District of Connecticut Bench-Bar Conference (Oct. 2016)
- The Annual Labor & Employment Law Update, Connecticut Bar Association Labor & Employment Conference (Mar. 2016)
- Employment Law Developments in Connecticut’s State & Federal Courts, Connecticut Bar Association Annual Conference (Jun. 2015)
- U.S. and Connecticut Supreme Courts Update, Connecticut Bar Association Labor & Employment Conference (Dec. 2014)
- Introduction to Wage & Hour Law, Connecticut Women’s Education and Legal Fund (CWEALF) (Nov. 2014)
- Discovery of Comparator Evidence,National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference (Jun. 2014)
- U.S. Supreme Court Update, Connecticut Bar Association Labor & Employment Conference (Dec. 2013)
- Damages in Common-Law Employment Cases (with Joseph D. Garrison), in The Comprehensive Guide to Economic Damages (N. Fannon & J. Dunitz eds., 4th ed. 2016)
- Conn. Court Says Goodbye to Garcetti: Recent Ruling Enhances Protections for Employee Whistleblowers, Connecticut Law Tribune (Oct. 27, 2015)
- The Supreme Court of Stability?: Employment Law in the U.S. Supreme Court, Connecticut Law Tribune (Jul. 27, 2015)
- Handling Suspected Employee Theft, Connecticut Law Tribune (Apr. 27, 2015)
- Workplace Bullying: A Problem for Everyone, Connecticut Law Tribune (Dec. 22, 2014)
- The Minimum Wage: An Ongoing Debate,American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law: FLASH (Jun./Jul. 2014)
- Alternative Dispute Resolution: Court Reaffirms Commitment to Enforcing Agreements, Connecticut Law Tribune (Mar. 3, 2014)
- Recent Case— Right to a Fair Trial, 121 Harv. L. Rev. 2238 (2008).
When I became unemployed for the first time in my life at 53 years old, I was very apprehensive about my first meeting with Josh Goodbaum, to say the least. As the time passed, I realized what a competent, educated, and genuinely kind man he was. My apprehension soon vanished, and the outcome was better than I ever expected. I would highly recommend Josh Goodbaum to anyone needing assistance with employment cases. — M.O., Seymour, CT
I recently found myself in need of a lawyer in handling a dispute with my former employer. I was fortunate to retain Josh Goodbaum as my legal counsel. His legal skills knowledge and professionalism shone through in every step of the process resulting in a very positive result. I highly recommend Josh if you find yourself in need of legal counsel. — S.R., Guilford, CT
Josh Goodbaum handled my brother’s employment case. He was very professional and he kept me up to date on everything pertaining to his case. Dealing with Josh was a joy. I never felt nervous at any time. I would not only recommend the law firm of Garrison Levin-Epstin, I would highly recommend having Josh Goodbaum as your lawyer. — L.E., West Haven, CT
Josh Goodbaum is a passionate lawyer who puts everything into every aspect of the case. Josh is honest about all the variables that play into your case and the time line of the settlement. He kept me informed during the process and calm throughout the whole thing. To be in a situation that requires a lawyer for employment law is difficult enough, the right lawyers are the deciding factors in the result of your case. I felt blessed to have found Josh Goodbaum and have him by my side during the process. I would highly recommend Josh Goodbaum and Garrison law to anyone who is dealing with harassment or unfair labor practices. I'm blessed to have him as a lawyer. However when you have Garrison law firm on your side, you are a part of a family. — D.S., Uncasville, CT
Josh Goodbaum is one of the most compassionate attorneys I have ever met. His knowledge and guidance is what got me through one of the most difficult experiences of my life. The legal system can be both intimidating and confusing. At times you tend to question yourself and ask if it’s all worth it. Josh assured me the entire time that I was doing the right thing. I never had to call and ask what was going on. Josh kept me briefed on a regular basis and never gave me inaccurate or unrealistic time frames. I knew what to expect and when. In the end we reached to a mutual resolution to my case.
I can’t imagine having anyone else by my side. I would highly recommend Garrison, Levin-Epstein, Fitzgerald & Pirrotti, P.C. (and specifically Josh Goodbaum) to anyone that is facing unfair labor practices or harassment of any kind. — T.M., North Branford, CT
I had lost my job two weeks into my maternity leave. I thought I had a case, but I was exhausted and consumed with fear for the future. After meeting with Josh Goodbaum, I immediately had a sense that he would take care of my family. As much as I was blown away with how personable Josh was, I was also stunned to watch him work. It is clear that this is Josh’s calling. He was by my side every step of the way, taking the time to answer every question and concern and to reassure me. Without him, I am not sure I would have had the courage to stand up and fight. To anyone needing legal help, there are not words to express what a good choice I made. I hope you choose the Garrison firm’s assistance in your journey, and I hope things go as well for you as they did for my family. — N.B., North Windham, CT
Josh Goodbaum’s professional experience was evident in the way he handled my case. I had no idea what to expect, seeing I had never spoken to a lawyer before. But I was immediately put at ease, and each visit to his office was like visiting family. I felt like I had known him forever. I can’t thank him enough. — C.G., Hopkinton, RI