Nina Pirrotti represents individuals in employment and civil rights litigation and negotiation. A member of the Executive Board of the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA); Vice Chair of the American Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section’s Trial Advocacy Competition Committee; a Co-Chair of the Employee Privacy subcommittee of the American Bar Association’s Employment Rights and Responsibilities Committee; and a past president of the Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association (CELA), she is well versed in all aspects of employment law, including discrimination (on the basis of race, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, religious creed, marital status, pregnancy, or national origin), sexual harassment, wrongful termination, retaliation, contract disputes (including those involving restrictive covenant agreements), FMLA and related leave of absence issues, unpaid wages, severance agreements, and whistleblower claims.
Nina also advocates on behalf of students and faculty. She has guided numerous students through their universities’ internal disciplinary procedures and has advised faculty members who have been targets of internal investigations. Nina has also litigated on behalf of students seeking to discharge their rights under Title IX, which prohibits sex discrimination in education.
Nina was selected as a 2014 Top 50 Connecticut Super Lawyer, placing her among the Top 50 lawyers in the state. She was also selected as a Top 25 Connecticut Woman Super Lawyer and a Top 50 New England Woman Super Lawyer. She has also been selected for inclusion in the Best Lawyers in America. In 2010, Nina was named by the Connecticut Law Tribune as one of its Women in the Law – High Achievers.
Even before Nina decided to represent employees, students, and faculty, she had already devoted almost 15 years to civil rights and public service. At the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, she was appointed to the Career Criminal Major Crimes Bureau, prosecuting homicides, bank robberies, kidnappings, and pattern crimes. And as an Assistant Corporation Counsel at the Law Department for the City of New York, she received the Association of the Bar of the City of New York’s Municipal Affairs Award for outstanding achievement.
Nina is an experienced trial advocate, having served as lead counsel in approximately 25 jury trials and 50 bench trials. She taught Trial Advocacy at the New York Prosecutor’s Training Institute, the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, and the New York City Law Department, and trial practice at Quinnipiac Law School as an adjunct professor.
Nina served as president of the CELA for approximately a decade and as a Co-Chair of the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) Affiliate Relations Committee, as well as its Second Circuit representative for several years. She has also served as a Track Coordinator for the American Bar Association’s 6th and 7th Annual Section Conferences and as a liaison for the ABA Section of Labor & Employment Law’s Diversity in the Legal Profession Committee. She routinely lectures nationally on employment related topics.
In 2015, Nina was appointed by the Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut to serve as a member of the Local Civil Rules Advisory Committee, which advises the Court concerning the rules for civil litigation.
Nina received her undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University, where she majored in Theater. She received her law degree from Yale Law School, where she was a member of the Journal of Law and Feminism and participated in the Barrister’s Union, a competitive mock trial organization. Nina began her legal career as an associate at commercial litigation firms and devoted significant time to pro bono matters, including employment discrimination and First Amendment/whistleblower cases.
- Represented five plaintiffs (three members of management and two staff members) in sexual harassment and retaliation claims against a major Connecticut employer, resulting in a settlement in excess of $1 million.
- Defended hedge fund manager in complex arbitration brought by his former employer (also a hedge fund), alleging violation of the parties’ restrictive covenant. Despite employer’s demand for millions of dollars in damages, the arbitration panel awarded only nominal damages of $2.
- Represented former employee against start-up technology company for failure to pay wages. After plaintiff quit her job prior to the expiration of her employment contract and filed a wage claim with the Department of Labor, the employer counterclaimed for breach of contract. Obtained dismissal of breach of contract action and brought successful arbitration against employer for, among other claims, retaliation and violation of wage and hour laws.
- Co-counseled with 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. The case settled for $1.285 million. The university made significant positive changes in its procedures for responding to reports of sexual violence.
- Represented high-level executive in age discrimination case against Fortune 100 company. Successfully briefed appeal to Second Circuit, which reversed District Court decision granting summary judgment. Case subsequently settled for $3.5 million.
- Represented four sales representatives in race discrimination and hostile work environment case against local Connecticut business. Case settled for $245,000.
- Represented two school principals in sexual harassment action against superintendent of schools. Case settled on favorable terms, including monetary settlement and imposition of new procedure for internal complaints against superintendent.
- Represented orchestra conductor in disability discrimination case. Case settled on favorable terms, including a significant monetary settlement, private apology, and gala retirement reception in conductor’s honor.
- 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
- The Employee Who Stays: A Tangled Web, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, San Antonio, TX (June 2017)
- Rule 30(b)(6) Depositions: How and When to Use Them, NELA New York Spring Conference, New York, NY (May 2017)
- Examining Sanctionable Conduct: Rule 11 from a Plaintiff Employment Lawyer’s Perspective, American Bar Association Employee Rights & Responsibilities Committee 2017 Midwinter Conference, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (March 2017)
- The New Standards on Sharing Wage and Other Confidential Information in the Workplace: The Growing Trend Toward Eliminating Contributors to the Gender Pay Gap, American Bar Association Labor & Employment Annual Conference, Chicago, IL (November 2016)
- What I Wish I knew When I was Starting out as a Plaintiff’s Employment Lawyer: Top Ten Tips, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, Los Angeles, CA (June 2016)
- Unraveling the Complexities of Workplace Investigations, American Bar Association Employee Rights & Responsibilities Committee 2016 Midwinter Conference, New Orleans, LA (March 2016)
- Handling Suspected Workplace Theft, Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), Southern Connecticut Chapter, Workplace Law Symposium, Stamford, CT (September 2015)
- Sexual Harassment & Assault Under Title IX, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, Atlanta, GA (June 2015)
- Unclean Hands: Issues Surrounding Employee Theft, American Bar Association Employee Rights & Responsibilities Committee 2015 Midwinter Conference, Naples, FL (March 2015)
- Tips from the Pros: Effective Negotiating Strategies for Success, Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association (MWELA) 2015 Annual Conference, Washington, DC (February 2015)
- Top Employment Policies (with emphasis on workplace investigations, use of social media, LBGT discrimination, bullying in the workplace and post-employment retaliation), American Bar Association Labor & Employment Annual Conference, Los Angeles, CA (November 2014)
- Successful Negotiations: The Unsung Value of the Human Connection, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, Boston, MA (June 2014)
- Internal Investigations in a Digital “Workplace,“American Bar Association National Symposium on Technology and Labor & Employment Law, New York, NY (May 2014)
- Damages Strategies: Recent Developments, Legal Theories, and the Role of Expert Witnesses, American Bar Association Webinar (December 2013)
- Bullies in the Workplace, American Bar Association Labor & Employment Annual Conference, New Orleans, LA (November 2013)
- Tips for Conducting a Successful Direct Examination of the Plaintiff, Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association, Orange, CT (October 2013)
- What Really Happened – Investigating Workplace Discrimination, American Arbitration Association (webinar) (October 2013)
- Using the Employer’s Flawed Investigation to Support the Plaintiff’s Case, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, Denver, CO (June 2013)
- Damage Strategies Beyond Back and Front Pay: Wage Recoveries and the Role of Expert Witnesses, American Bar Association Labor & Employment EEO Conference, Savannah, GA (April 2013)
- Executive Behavior Run Amok: Strategic Considerations for Workplace Investigations, American Bar Association Labor & Employment Annual Conference, Atlanta, GA (October 2012)
- Retaliation in the Post-Employment Context – The Former Employer’s Parting Shot, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, San Diego, CA (June 2012)
- Retaliation in the Post Employment Context: Not a Time to Let Your Guard Down, American Bar Association Labor & Employment Annual Conference, Seattle, WA (November 2011)
- Transforming Weaknesses into Strength at Trial, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, Washington, DC (June 2010)
- Pregnancy and Family Responsibility Discrimination – Romantic Paternalism is Alive and Well, Connecticut Women’s Education & Legal Fund, New Haven, CT (June 2010)
- Investigating and Bringing a Claim – The Employee’s Lawyer’s Perspective, Worker’s Compensation Trust, Wallingford, CT (April 2010)
- Survey of Employee Friendly State Laws, National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Conference, Palm Springs, CA (June 2009)
- Defending Depositions, National Employment Lawyers Association Conference, Denver, CO (March 2009)
- Trial Themes, National Employment Lawyers Association Regional Conference, Boston, MA (May 2008)
- Punitive Damages in the Wake of Philip Morris USA v. Williams, Connecticut Bar Association, Hartford, CT (June 2007)
- Getting to the Root of the Problem: A Trend Toward a More Practical Approach to Addressing Discrimination and Retaliation in the Workplace, in Complying with Employment Regulations: Leading Lawyers on Analyzing Legislation and Adapting to the Changing State of Employment Law (Thomson Reuters/Aspatore 2016-17 )
- Handling Suspected Employee Theft, Connecticut Law Tribune (Apr. 27, 2015)
- Workplace Bullying: A Problem for Everyone, Connecticut Law Tribune (Dec. 22, 2014)
- Retaliation After Employment Ends: The Former Employer’s “Parting Shot”, Connecticut Law Tribune (Jan. 28, 2013)
- Strategic Considerations for Workplace Investigations, Connecticut Law Tribune (Oct. 22, 2012)
- Pregnancy Discrimination: Why It May Be the Most Difficult Form of Discrimination to Eradicate from the Workplace, Blog, Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association (Oct. 26, 2010)
- Shopping at Wal-Mart: The Savings Are Not Worth the Price, Blog, Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association (Nov. 19, 2009)
I felt an immediate warm connection with Nina from the first moment we spoke. Nina exemplifies sincere caring. Although my matter was a small concern, Nina treated my case and me as if I was her one and only client. She was always responsive to my questions, and represented my position with compassion. The results were very positive and timely. Nina has my unwavering recommendation. She is AMAZING! M.L., Greater New Haven Region, CT
Recently, I was unceremoniously let go from my job that I had held for 35 years without any advanced notice and was told my last day of employment was two days later. I was devastated. I was handed a general release agreement to sign, which would have provided me with a little severance, but I was the main provider for my family and knowing I had no other means to support my family I didn't know what to do. I was then referred to Nina Pirrotti, who listened to my story, and told me I had a case worth fighting for, and immediately agreed to help me. Her kind words and encouragement were just what I needed and through her efforts I came away with a larger severance package, which I would not have been able to negotiate on my own. Her support of me and her tenacity to fight for me was extremely appreciated. A Former Client
I was referred to Attorney Pirrotti by another lawyer -from another state- to handle a hateful situation I was facing with my former employer. I was in a very bad moment in my professional life, yet I was about to give birth to my first son. My heart was broken and I was living in constant anxiety. Well, Nina’s professionalism and humanity went above and beyond helping me: she was my pillar, gave me confidence and made me feel safe. My case was resolved quickly and I was a winner. It was my first experience with any attorney, and I felt like she was part of my family. A great personality, a wonderful lawyer, an extraordinary human being. E.M., Hamden, CT
I was put in an unfortunate situation by an employer. After speaking with a couple different lawyers, Nina Pirrotti clearly emerged as the person I wanted to handle my case. Her knowledge of the law, compassion for my situation, and commitment to fight for my rights gave me complete confidence I had made the right choice. The successful outcome of my case proved this even further. Needless to say, I enjoyed working with Nina and highly recommend her! D.W., Milford, CT
Attorney Nina Pirrotti is none like no other. From the moment I met her I knew I was in the right hands. I was briefed on every aspect of my case. Her expertise and professionalism helped empower me to overcome my fears. Attorney Pirrotti's compassion and love for her work is shown in how she diligently fights for you. She forms a bond of trust. She responds to your concerns very quickly and she makes sure every aspect of your case is covered. In sum, Nina Pirrotti makes sure you get all your entitled, and the respect you deserve as a working citizen. L.C., Middletown, CT
I was referred to Nina during a very difficult period in my life and if there was ever a silver lining to anything - she was it! As soon as I turned the situation over to her it was a huge weight off my shoulders. She is friendly, reassuring, responsive and very, very good at what she does. I had the utmost confidence that she would do whatever it took to get the situation resolved as best it possibly could have been for me. I know that the final outcome of the situation would not have been as good had Nina not been on the case! I cannot recommend her highly enough. A.H., Greenwich, CT
I was referred to Attorney Pirrotti by another attorney, who stated that if I have a case, Nina would be the attorney to hire. When I first met with Attorney Pirrotti, I wasn't even sure if I had a lawsuit against my former employer. She assured me that I did. Nina gave me the courage and confidence to pursue this case. Her level of professionalism and compassion for my cause knew no bounds. She advocated for me and I won! She and her staff constantly kept me informed throughout the proceedings. Her honesty and integrity compare to no other. I am grateful to Attorney Pirrotti for closing one chapter of my life in a positive manner and allowing me to open the next one. Thank you, Nina!! M.A.
I am very grateful for your help Nina. Over many years I’d been building a safety net at my place of employment but when the time came to leave, the company did their best to remove it. It was you that made sure that security stayed in place. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Instead of falling with a crash, you’ve enabled me to enter a new stage of my life with confidence. N.B., Newtown, CT
There are lawyers who are good and there are lawyers who are exceptional. This is who Nina is: outstanding, a lawyer with a big heart who truly cares about her clients and their best interest. She is a rare breed, lawyers that are on the role of extinction, those who truly care about their clients. As a lawyer and an expert in her field she is outstanding and extraordinary. In my opinion, she is one of the best lawyers in the country. Before I hired her, I did my research and she turned out to be exactly what she was recommended as, simply superb! Thank you, Nina for all your help, tremendous knowledge and expertise and for caring. R.L., Branford, CT
Nina is an inspiration to and a great advocate for women. It is good to know that there is someone who is willing to stand up and fight and who is not afraid of big corporations. T.D., Rocky Hill, CT
Nina Pirrotti represented me during one of the most difficult times in my career. My health and my life were deteriorating to such an extent that I was unable to think clearly. Nina’s tireless efforts to advocate for me and represent my best interests secured for me an outcome one can only dream of. Nina’s professionalism and dedication never wavered as she was a pillar of strength that guided me and my family to a successful outcome. I am truly indebted to Nina and cannot thank her and her team enough. — D.F., Rocky Hill, CT
Nina provided outstanding legal advice and was trustworthy, dependable, and responsive. From the start, I was confident that her knowledge and experience would obtain favorable results. On a more personal note, I enjoyed working with her and her staff and felt I was included in every part of the process. The dedication, concern, and interest in me as a client was greatly appreciated, and Nina has earned my highestrecommendation. — J.H., Monroe, CT
Nina Pirrotti represented me in a case against my former employer. Not only was the outcome favorable, I was extremely pleased with the process itself. Attorney Pirrotti was compassionate, understanding, pro-active, organized, scrupulous, and extremely aggressive on my behalf. I was, in every way, glad she was on my side of the table. Of course I hope I’ll never again be involved in a lawsuit against an employer, but if I do, I have no question as to whom I will turn: Nina Pirrotti. — J.C., Bethel, CT
Attorney Pirrotti represented us during an emotional and difficult time in our professional lives. She was an active listener, always making us feel supported and validated. Nina was extremely knowledgeable of the law and strategic in her approach in dealing with any new situation that arose in our case. She represented us with the utmost integrity and sensitivity. She was always available and responsive with communication. Having Nina on our side allowed us to stay focused on our work, families and move forward with our lives. — C.K. & M.D., Milford & South Windsor, CT
Nina Pirrotti was referred to me by a colleague. From the moment I met her, I found Nina to be comforting, professional and willing to tirelessly search and advocate for my labor rights to keep my job. She was in constant touch by phone and email during a very unpleasant period of my life. I appreciate all she has done for me and would not hesitate to recommend her expertise. — S.A., Milford, CT
I felt that Attorney Pirrotti’s expertise in the field brought me to a resolution that I didn’t think was possible. I was very comfortable with how she handled a very delicate situation and how her advice led me to feel confident in my decision to pursue my case. I would highly recommend her counsel to anyone looking for the best! — M.H., Wallingford, CT
I spoke to several attorneys before deciding to have Nina Pirrotti represent me in my case against my former employer. What a wonderful decision. Nina and her staff represented my interests professionally, providing outstanding advocacy and personal attention. Thank you for helping me achieve justice and helping me move on with my life. — M.K., New Fairfield, CT
Faced with a difficult employment situation I sought the advice and counsel of Nina Pirrotti. What was an extremely difficult and life changing decision became infinitely easier after meeting with her. She offered sound advice that was to the point. She reviewed the situation and presented me with my options, which I reviewed and ultimately came to a decision that worked best for me. I would recommend Nina and Garrison Law to anyone and everyone that needs an advocate in their corner. Thank you ever so much! — A.M., Stratford, CT
Choosing a lawyer to represent you in times of difficulty is an important decision that sometimes requires help from those you trust. Nina Pirrotti came highly recommended to me, and after working with her on a case that was not clear cut, I recommend her highly. She is kind,thoughtful, and very respectfulin her approach with her clients. Her legal knowledge and excellent communication skillsadd to the valueshebrings toone’s case. Shehasa high level of integrity and is never afraid to offer or ask for assistance to ensure her clients get the benefit of all the best thinking and knowledge available. — D.L., Wallingford, CT
Nina always got back to me immediately, explained things in “real” terms , not lawyer jargon. She is a ball of fire and I would expect a real asset to her firm. I would not hesitate to recommend Nina and will definitely be in contact in the future if need be. — M.W.., Madison, CT
Nina was a pivotal part of deconvoluting a difficult situation in my professional life. She was supportive and available at all times via phone, e-mail or in person— even while stuck in an airport during vacation. Nina was able to reduce my stress levels and assure me that everything would turn out for the best. Of course she was right, making sound decisions when I was too wrapped up in the intricacies of the problem to see the larger picture. I can’t thank Nina enough and would recommend her to anyone, without hesitation, that needs assistance in these types of situations. She is the ultimate advocate for the individual. — S.B., Cheshire, CT
As a corporate executive, I sought legal counsel for a professional dilemma with my employer, one of the largest corporations around the globe. Despite my concerns of an extremely tight time frame to impart a deluge of complex details of my case to Attorney Nina Pirrotti, she exhibited an amazing balance of patience and vigilance while receiving my input and siphoning through the facts of my situation. Atty Pirrotti is the consummate professional warrior. She has an enormous capacity for taking in significant volumes of ‘situational data’ and combines it with excellent distillation; skillfully discerning the relevant key factors from background supportive information. Atty Pirrotti managed to optimize/increase the total value of my case outcome and did so with great poise, amazing diligence, excellent grasp of the law and its applicability to my situation. — P.R., Wisconsin
Nina Pirrotti is a regular guest contributor to Dan Schwartz’s Connecticut Employment Law Blog which has been named by the ABA as one of the best 100 blogs by lawyers in the country.
Their dialogues on a variety of employment-related topics, with an emphasis of late on sexual harassment in the workplace, appear below:
January 10th, 2018 The Dialogue: The Shifts That #MeToo Are Creating in the Workplace
March 14th, 2017 The Dialogue: What Legislation We’re Keeping Our Eyes On
January 27th, 2017 The Dialogue: Hiring Employees the Right Way (From Different Sides)