In the News

Haynes and Boone Obtains Summary Judgment Victory for Berryhill Hot Tamales

HOUSTON - The Haynes and Boone, LLP team of Houston Partners Matthew Deffebach and Yasser Madriz, Houston Associates Meghaan McElroy and Caroline Dwairy, and Dallas Associate Lindsay Murchison have scored a summary judgment victory for Berryhill Hot Tamales Corporation (BHT), the franchisor of Berryhill Baja Grill & Cantina restaurants. >>

Texas Super Lawyer Rising Star Features 34 Haynes and Boone Lawyers

DALLAS – Thirty-four Haynes and Boone, LLP lawyers have been recognized in the Texas Super Lawyer 2013 Rising Stars edition, a special publication recognizing the top up-and-coming lawyers in the state. >>



Meghaan C. McElroy

Associate

Houston


1221 McKinney Street
Suite 2100
Houston, 77010
T +1 713.547.2082
F +1 713.236.5513

Áreas de Practica

Educación

  • J.D., William & Mary Law School, 2009, Order of the Coif; William and Mary Law Review; ranked first in class; recipient of the Kruchko & Fries Award for Excellence in Labor & Employment
  • B.A., History and Political Science, Tulane University, 2006, Phi Beta Kappa; cum laude; Minor in Business

Bar Admissions

  • Texas, 2009

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
Meghaan C. McElroy

Meghaan McElroy is an associate in the Labor and Employment Practice Group in the Houston office of Haynes and Boone, LLP. Meghaan has experience in a variety of labor and employment matters, including:

  • Assisting in the defense of clients during DOL investigations and wage and hour lawsuits, including FLSA collective actions, especially relating to exempt classifications and off-the-clock claims.  
  • Advising clients on wage and hour compliance issues regarding compensable time, overtime compensation, employee exemptions, and other compensation issues.
  • Defending clients during EEOC investigations involving Title VII, ADA, and ADEA claims.
  • Assisting in the defense of litigation involving Title VII, § 1981, ADA, ADEA, and employment-related torts.
  • Assisting in the defense and/or prosecution of litigation involving non-compete agreements, non-solicitation agreements, and claims of misappropriation of trade secrets, tortious interference, breach of contract, and breach of fiduciary duty.
  • Representing clients in Texas Workforce Commission unemployment benefits hearings.
  • Providing advice and counsel to employers concerning a variety of employment issues, including strategies for minimizing risks of litigation, employment policies, and employment agreements.
  • Drafting and/or reviewing severance and release agreements, employment agreements, non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, and confidentiality agreements.
  • Drafting and/or reviewing employee handbooks, leave of absence policies, and other workplace policies and procedures.

Meghaan also places a strong emphasis on her pro bono docket, particularly cases presenting opportunities to help children and families.

Select Accomplishments

  • Obtained decertification of nationwide FLSA collective action for multinational internet service provider.
  • Obtained summary judgment for franchisor on Title VII claims brought against franchisee and franchisor for failure to exhaust administrative remedies.
  • Obtained summary judgment for client on plaintiff’s Title VII, § 1981, ADA, and FLSA claims.
  • Obtained summary judgment for client on plaintiff's ERISA, Title VII, ADA, ADEA, and GINA claims.
  • Obtained summary disposition for restaurant chain in arbitration on former manager’s age discrimination and retaliation claims.
  • Obtained temporary injunction against seven former employees for violation of their non-competition agreements and misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information of oilfield services company.
  • Obtained temporary restraining order against a former employee for violation of a non-disclosure and non-solicitation agreement and misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information.
  • Successfully overturned on appeal a TWC finding that a former employee was entitled to unemployment benefits, establishing that the employer terminated the employee for work-related misconduct.
  • Successfully defended various companies against charges of discrimination filed with the EEOC and TWCCRD.
  • Prosecuted criminal cases for the City of Houston as a volunteer prosecutor, including trying 13 jury trials with 10 guilty verdicts.

Publications

  • "Employees Get What? What Texas Employers Need to Know About Mexican Labor and Employment Law," Co-Author with Yasser Madriz and Felicity Fowler, The Houston Lawyer, January/February 2012.
  • "Noncompete Agreements in the Employment Context," Employee Benefit Plan Review, Co-Author with Dean Schaner and Katie Chatterton, November 2011. 
  • "Annual Review of Litigation, Chapter 3: Appellate Practice," contributor, with Kendyl Hanks and Mark Trachtenberg, American Bar Association, Section of Business Law, April 2011.
  • "Sextual Frustration: Why the Law Needs to Catch Up to Teenagers' Texts," The Houston Lawyer, November/December 2010.
  • "Health Care Reform 101: For Employers," Law360 Guest Column, Co-Author with Felicity Fowler and Katie Chatterton, June 14, 2010.
  • "Possession is Nine Tenths of the Law:  But Who Really Owns a Church's Property in the Wake of a Religious Split Within a Hierarchical Church?" 50 WM. & MARY L. REV. 311 (2008)

Honors

  • Selected for inclusion in Texas Super Lawyers - Rising Stars Edition in Employment & Labor (2013)

Selected Representative Experience


Joey Roland v. Texas Taco Cabana, L.P.; JAMS Case No. 1310020375 (Arbitration before JAMS)
Obtained summary disposition for restaurant chain in JAMS arbitration in defense of age discrimination and retaliation claims under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA") and Chapter 21 of the Texas Labor Code a/k/a the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act ("TCHRA") brought by former manager. Prior to initiating the arbitration, the claimant failed to file a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or the Texas Workforce Commission, Civil Rights Division. The arbitrator agreed with our client that the claimant was required to exhaust his administrative remedies under the ADEA and TCHRA even though he brought his claims in arbitration and not in court. As a result, the arbitrator dismissed the claimant's claims for failure to exhaust administrative remedies and issued a take nothing judgment against the claimant because he could not remedy his failure to exhaust administrative remedies, as his claims were time-barred.

T H Hill Associates, Inc. v. Jeffrey A. Benson, et al.; Cause No. 2012-75246; In the 152nd Judicial District Court of Harris County, Texas
Obtained temporary injunction against seven former employees for violating their non-competition agreements with T H Hill and for misappropriating T H Hill's confidential, proprietary, and trade secret information after the defendants resigned en masse to service one of T H Hill's international customers on behalf of T H Hill's competitor and former agent.

Edith Ihegword v. Harris County Hospital District; Civil Action No. H-10-5180; In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division (Decision Date: March 7, 2013)
Obtained summary judgment for client on all of plaintiff's claims, including a failure to accommodate claim under the Americans with Disabilities Act, a national origin discrimination claim under Title VII, a failure to pay overtime claim under the Fair Labor Standards Act and Chapter 61 of the Texas Labor Code, and a retaliation claim.

“Single Employer” Title VII Issue in Franchisor-Franchisee case for Berryhill Hot Tamales
In a matter regarding when a franchisor can be potentially held liable for the acts of one of its independent franchisees, our team obtained summary judgment for a restaurant franchisor, Berryhill Hot Tamales. Our client’s independent franchisee was alleged to have violated Title VII regarding allegations of sexual harassment. The plaintiffs sought to create liability for the franchisor by arguing that it was a joint employer or “single enterprise” along with the franchisee.

FLSA Exempt Classification - Southern District of Texas
We represented a restaurant group that was sued under the FLSA for misclassifying the chef position. We were retained four days before a summary judgment hearing to substitute in as new counsel. Before our retention, our client had deemed admissions against it and an untimely summary judgment response on file. Plaintiff was moving for summary judgment based, in part, on the deemed admissions. We were able to have the deemed admissions withdrawn and the summary judgment was denied. We then assisted the client on a favorable settlement.

Online Publications

03/08/2012 - The Houston Lawyer Guest Article: What Texas Employers Need to Know About Mexican Labor and Employment Law
Before entering an unknown business market, employers must be apprised of the labor and employment laws governing the employer-employee relationship in that jurisdiction.

11/29/2011 - Employee Benefit Plan Review Guest Article: Noncompete Agreements in the Employment Context
Here we go again! For the third time in less than six years, the Texas Supreme Court has repudiated technical legal niceties and has adopted broad proemployer principles to support the enforcement of noncompetition agreements in Texas.

08/15/2011 - Emerging from the Marsh: The Texas Supreme Court Clarifies and Solidifies the Enforcement of Non-Compete Agreements in the Employment Context
Here we go again! For the third time in less than six years, the Texas Supreme Court has repudiated technical legal niceties and has adopted broad pro-employer principles to support the enforcement of non-competition agreements in Texas. Marsh USA, Inc. v. Cook, 54 Tex. Sup. Ct. J. 1234 (Tex. 2011).

03/09/2011 - Employers’ Cat’s Paw Liability: Watch Out for the Monkey Business of Supervisors
In a case decided last week, Staub v. Proctor Hospital, a unanimous United States Supreme Court finally addressed the application of the “cat’s paw” theory of liability to employment discrimination claims, holding that an employer can be liable for an employment action motivated by a non-decision maker’s discriminatory animus.

01/31/2011 - FLSA Year in Review 2010: Death Star Workers Were Independent Contractors; Other Cases Also Side With Empire
FLSA year in review, a look ahead: Expect the DOL to continue its aggressive enforcement of the wage and hour laws which, of course, will likely lead to more litigation over alleged wage and hour violations.

11/30/2010 - The Houston Lawyer Guest Article: Sextual Frustration: Why the Law Needs to Catch Up to Teenagers' Texts
Today's youth has introduced a new word into the American vocabulary - "sexting." The media-driven term combines "sex" and "texting" to describe the practice of teens sending sexually suggestive text messages or nude or semi-nude photographs either of themselves or of other teens by cell phone or email.

11/19/2010 - Employers' Eye on the Court: The U.S. Supreme Court Will Decide a Host of Employment-Related Cases During its Current Term
The U.S. Supreme Court began its new 2010-2011 term on October 4, 2010 with a number of employment-related cases on the docket, many of which have already been orally argued, that could potentially impact employers concerning such matters as arbitration, retaliation, immigration, and employee benefits.

06/30/2010 - U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Employer Searches and Underscores Importance of Electronic Communications Policies
The United States Supreme Court issued a unanimous decision that provides guidance on steps employers can take to reduce an employee’s privacy expectations and emphasizes the importance of having a clear, well-defined privacy policy.

06/14/2010 - Fowler, Chatterton and McElroy Guest Column in Law360: Health Care Reform 101: For Employers
On March 21, 2010, the House of Representatives passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”), signed into law on March 23, 2010. The health care reform law will make far-reaching changes to the United States health care system over the next several years.

04/22/2010 - Employers Beware: How the Recent Health Care Reform Legislation Affects Employers
On March 21, 2010, the House of Representatives passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”), which President Obama signed into law on March 23, 2010. The health care reform law will make far-reaching changes to the United States health care system over the next several years.