Katherine Blostein - Employment Law Attorney New York City, NY

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Katherine Blostein

Partner
New York Office
(212) 245-1000

About

KATHERINE BLOSTEIN is a partner at Outten & Golden LLP in New York and Co-chair of its Executives & Professionals Practice Group. She represents employees in public and private companies in negotiation of employment, severance, non-competition, expatriate, and international assignment agreements. She also represents teams of employees, founders and partners in employment related situations during a sale, merger and acquisitions and other corporate transactions. Ms. Blostein represents employees in various industries, including financial services (on the buy and sell side), entertainment, advertising, media, technology, fashion, and consumer goods and services. She also represents attorneys, accounting professionals, doctors and other medical practitioners in employment related matters. Ms. Blostein is also a member of the Firm’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Queer (LGBTQ) Workplace Rights Practice Group.

Ms. Blostein is a member of ABA’s Section of Labor & Employment Law, where she is an active member of the Employment Rights & Responsibilities and International Labor and Employment Law Committees. She is also a member of NELA/NY and NYSBA. Ms. Blostein and Ms. Wendi S. Lazar co-authored a chapter titled "Executive Employment Agreements" published in the Executive & Director Compensation Reference Guide (BNA) and an article, “Executive Pay: Skydiving with a New Parachute,” published by BNA. Ms. Blostein is Associate Editor (2015 Cumulative Supplement), assisted in the research and writing of a major treatise on international restrictive covenants, titled “Restrictive Covenants and Trade Secrets in Employment Law: An International Survey" published by BNA. She was also a contributor to “Negotiating and Drafting Expatriate Employment Agreements” published in International Labor & Employment Law, 3rd Edition, Vol. 1B by BNA.

Ms. Blostein graduated from New York Law School where she was a member of the Executive Board of the Law Review, a John Marshall Harlan Scholar, and an affiliate of the Center for International Law. She earned her B.A. from Brandeis University.

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    Bar Admissions & Professional Activities

    • Ms. Blostein is admitted to practice in New York.

    • Member, New York State Bar Association (NYSBA)

    • Member, National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA)

    • Member, National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA/NY)

    • Member, American Bar Association (ABA) (Section of Labor & Employment Law, Contracts & Executive Compensation Subcommittee of Employment Rights & Responsibilities Committee (ERR))

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    Speaking Engagements

    2017

    • Speaker: "Employment law perspective of data protection GDPR and privacy shield," ELA, Fifth Transatlantic Conference: Programme, London, England

    2016

    • Speaker: "Minimum Wage, Overtime, Pay Equity, and Discussion of Wages," New York City Bar, Recent Developments in New York Employment Law, New York, NY

    2015

    • Speaker: "Does the Work Day Ever End? How Employers, Unions and Employees are Grappling with Email, Social Media, BYOD and On-Call Responsibilities Around the Clock and Around the Globe," ABA, Section of Labor & Employment Law, International Labor and Employment Law Committee, Midyear Meeting, Barcelona, Spain
    • Moderator: "Basic Employment Law Issues in Central & South America," ABA Section of Labor & Employment Law, Employment Rights and Responsibilities Committee, Midwinter Meeting, Naples, FL

    2013

    • Speaker: "But I’m Special: Industry-Specific Executive Compensation and Contract Issues," American Bar Association, Section of Labor & Employment Law, International Labor & Employment Law Committee, Midyear Meeting, Rome, Italy

    2011

    • Lecturer: "Ensuring Real “Win-Win” Cross-Border Mergers and Acquisitions," American Bar Association, Annual Meeting, Toronto, ON, Canada

    2010

    • Lecturer: "Digging Into the Pot of Gold – Executive Compensation Cutbacks and Take-Aways," American Bar Association, ERR Midwinter Meeting, Coronado, CA
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    Publications & Articles

    Jennifer Lawrence Says Hollywood Gender Pay Gap Shouldn't be a Part of the Real-Life American Hustle

    Katherine Blostein and Amy Biegelsen, O&G Employment Law Blog, October 16, 2015

    International Lawyers as Clients

    Katherine Blostein, O&G Employment Law Blog, May 21, 2015

    Mandatory Arbitration: Searching for Fairness

    Katherine Blostein, O&G Employment Law Blog, March 26, 2015

    Restrictive Covenants and Trade Secrets in Employment Law: An International Survey, Volume I, with 2015 Cumulative Supplement

    Wendi S. Lazar, Co-Editor In-Chief, Katherine Blostein, Associate Editor Bureau of National Affairs, Inc., 2015.

    Negotiating Executive Employment Agreements: Cutting A Path Through The Regulatory Thicket

    Wendi S. Lazar and Katherine Blostein write about negotiating executive compensation agreements, and current issues. The landscape of executive compensation has changed significantly since the financial crisis of 2008. As a result of the ensuing downturn and increased public scrutiny, executives’ leverage in negotiating the terms and conditions of their employment and equity agreements has decreased. The overwhelming outcry about excessive pay from shareholders and the public following the downturn resulted in new legislation that limits executive pay for top executives at public companies and imposes compensation restrictions and disclosure requirements on large companies generally. However, in the intervening years, the Securities and Exchange Commission still has not enacted rules implementing a significant portion of the new legislation, and therefore much uncertainty remains. In addition, the past several years have seen a return to performance-based compensation, as well as a movement towards eradicating excessive guaranteed bonuses on Wall Street and among other bonus-based businesses. Wendi S. Lazar and Katherine Blostein write about negotiating executive compensation agreements, and current issues. Bloomberg BNA, Pensions and Benefits Daily. Reproduced with permission from Pension & Benefits Daily, 127 PBD, 07/02/2014. Copyright 2014 by The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (800-372-1033) http://www.bna.com

    Executive Pay: Skydiving With A New Parachute

    Wendi S. Lazar and Katherine Blostein. Bloomberg BNA, Reproduced with permission from Pension & Benefits Daily, PBD, 11/02/2011. Copyright 2011 by The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (800-372-1033) http://www.bna.com

    The financial crisis of 2008 and the ongoing down-turn in the economy has had a significant effect on executive compensation and on executives’ leverage in negotiating the terms and conditions of their employment and equity agreements. The overwhelming outcry about excessive pay from shareholders and the public has resulted in federal regulations that limit executive pay for top executives at public companies and impose compensation restrictions and disclosure requirements on large companies generally. In addition, there has been a return to performance-based compensation, as well as a movement toward eradicating guaranteed bonuses on Wall Street and among other bonus-based businesses.

    However, because of a need for top talent in tough times, companies are adjusting to the newly imposed restrictions and, where possible, are finding creative ways to structure compensation packages for employees. Unfortunately, public opinion is not as easily assuaged. The current challenge for companies and their counsel negotiating executive agreements is to balance the need for attracting and compensating top talent against potential negative public opinion. How hard and where to push becomes a concern in order to ensure that these agreements pass muster with the companies’ shareholders.

    With these considerations in mind, attorneys representing executives should be aware of the most recent trends, developments, and regulations that will affect negotiations in the current economy.

    Executive Pay: Skydiving With a New Parachute; Recent regulations affecting Executive Compensation.

    Executive Employment Agreements

    Wendi Lazar and Katherine Blostein survey the new laws and regulations associated with the current economic downturn and the resulting shifts in the form, nature, and timing of executive compensation. Recently enacted laws like the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, as well as Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code, impose firm restrictions on the compensation of top executives; the restrictions vary based on the size of the employer and whether it is publicly traded. This article concludes that “the days of paying excessive executive compensation unchallenged by regulators and shareholders [are] over.” The authors emphasize the need for attorneys negotiating executive employment agreements to be aware of these and other developments and their impact on the type of compensation packages employers are offering their top executives. Attorneys also must ensure that all agreements about compensation are memorialized in an employment agreement or other contract, including provisions for the treatment of deferred compensation in the event of termination.

    *Originally published as Wendi S. Lazar and Katherine Blostein, “Changing Economy Impacts Executive Pay,” BNA Pension & Benefits Daily, 172 PBD, Sept. 09, 2009.

    Reproduced with permission from Executive Compensation Library on the Web, XCLW, 06/06/2011. Copyright

    Restrictive Covenants and Trade Secrets in Employment Law: An International Survey

    Wendi S. Lazar and Katherine Blostein 2010 Contributor, treatise, published by BNA

    Multiple Issues In Corporate Raiding Of Employees: Outside Counsel

    Wendi S. Lazar and Katherine Blostein, New York Law Journal (online), May 1, 2009

    Now that bankruptcy proceedings have replaced mergers and acquisitions, poaching key employees rather than buying a division can be cost effective. Corporate raiding of employees, however, raises serious legal and financial concerns for everyone involved, but particularly for employees and their counsel.

    Poaching a coveted employee or raiding a team is bound to leave behind an angry employer who wants revenge. The hardest job for employee-side counsel is to keep the client from becoming a defendant in a lawsuit against both the employee and the new employer.

    Knowing how to prevent or minimize an employee's liability in this situation is critical. Counseling employees on terms and conditions to be negotiated with the new employer before departure will protect them from economic loss and protracted and costly litigation.

    Changing Economy Impacts Executive Pay

    Wendi S. Lazar, Pension & Benefits Daily, published by Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (BNA), 2009, with Co-Author, Katherine Blostein.

    Negotiating and Drafting Expatriate Employment Agreements

    in International Labor & Employment Laws, Third Edition, Vol. 1B, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, published by BNA Books (2009) — Wendi S. Lazar and Gary R. Siniscalco

    Arbitrability Of Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Claims

    This article explores the arguments presented by member firms and registered employees, and outlines what arbitration panels have decided. Laurence S. Moy. Pearl Zachlewski, Linda Neilan, and Katherine Blostein. The Neutral Corner, Newsletter of FINRA Neutrals, Volume 1, 2008.

    Since the passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX), arbitrators handling employment claims may be faced with a throny question concerning SOX whistleblower claims: Should a SOX claim be litigated in court or arbitrated? Ultimately, the question comes to whether SOX whistleblower claims constitute "employment discrimination" claims, and are thus exempt from arbitration under Rule 13201 of the Code of Arbitration Procedure for Industry Disputes (Code). This article explores the arguments presented by member firms and registered employees and outlines what arbitration panels have decided.

    What Every NELA Lawyer Should Know: A Guide to the Statutes We Use Every Day

    Piper Hoffman and Katherine (Olshansky) Blostein, The Employee Advocate, Spring/Summer 2006

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    Awards & Recognition

    • 2018 Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment Lawyers

    • Super Lawyers Rising Star 2014-2017

    • John Marshall Harlan Scholar, New York Law School

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