“Wisdom: When we advocate for the rights of employees — whether negotiating, litigating, or strategizing — we rely on deep knowledge, vigor, and always, wisdom.”


JENNIFER SCHWARTZ is a partner at Outten & Golden LLP and heads the individuals representation practice in the San Francisco office. She represents employees exclusively in a wide range of employment matters, including litigation in state and federal trial courts, arbitration, before administrative agencies, and in appellate courts. 

Ms. Schwartz’s practice focuses on claims of wrongful termination, discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, and violation of state and federal wage and hour laws. She also represents whistleblowers and individuals who have experienced adverse employment action as a result of opposing illegal or unethical corporate practices. Her deep experience with discrimination and retaliation includes matters involving race, disability, ethnic origin and religious discrimination.  Her passion for advancing the cause of women in the workplace has given her the opportunity to represent an uncountable number of women – from the C-suite to the assembly line – in an effort to remediate all forms of gender discrimination. She also represents clients in contract disputes, commission and bonus claims.   

An experienced and hard-driving trial lawyer, Ms. Schwartz has litigated a wide variety of matters in court and arbitration.  She will leave no stone unturned in seeking a winning outcome.  

Despite her extensive litigation and arbitration experience, Ms. Schwartz often finds that, with appropriate counseling and negotiation, extensive litigation can be avoided. Ms. Schwartz frequently utilizes mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution in pursuit of the most favorable outcome for her clients.

Ms. Schwartz also handles a variety of professional and executive compensation and benefits matters, including the negotiation of employment, severance, restrictive covenant, confidentiality and trade secret agreements. She provides advice to founders, leadership team members and other employees and professionals at both “start ups” and established businesses relating to transactional matters, including employment and equity agreements, changes in control, and IPO’s.  .

Before joining Outten & Golden LLP, Ms. Schwartz managed her own firm in the San Francisco area, practicing in the areas of employment law and criminal defense. One of her career highlights was obtaining an acquittal at re-trial after appeal for a client wrongfully convicted of a homicide.

Ms. Schwartz has been rated regionally and nationally by Northern California Super Lawyers, Avvo, Center for Women in Law as a “Power Player”, and San Francisco Magazine, Top Attorneys In Northern California.

Ms. Schwartz employs a highly client-centric approach, carefully considering all aspects of a client’s life and needs in helping develop and implement strategic decisions. She believes that every single client — without regard to position in life — deserves a dedicated, compassionate, and tenacious advocate.

(*Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.)

Bar Admission and Professional Activity
  • Ms. Schwartz is admitted to practice law only in New York and California.
  • Ms. Schwartz is admitted to the following federal courts: The United States District Court for the Northern District of California, the Eastern District of California; and the Central District of California; and the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
  • Co-Chair, Labor & Employment Section, Marin County Bar Association, 2021
  • President of the Board of Directors, Marin Trial Lawyers Association, 2020-21
  • FINRA arbitrator, selected to serve on the Criminal Justice Act Trial Panel for the Northern District of California.
  • Board of Directors, Marin Trial Lawyers Association
  • Member, Litigation Committee, Equal Rights Advocates
  • Member, American Bar Association, Labor & Employment section
  • Member, National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA)
  • Member, California Employment Lawyers Association (CELA)
  • Member, California State Bar, Labor & Employment section
  • Member, San Francisco Bar Association, Labor & Employment section
  • Member, Marin County Bar Association, Labor & Employment section
  • Member, CABAL (Northern California subgroup of the Plaintiff Employment Lawyer Association).  Served as CABAL liaison to the NELA annual conference on two occasions.
  • Honorary Steering Committee for the 2022 Equal Right Advocates Gala
Video & Podcasts

September 1, 2018

San Francisco partner Jennifer Schwartz discusses the firm’s Individual Practice Group and protecting the rights of employees.

Play Video
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Speaking Engagements


  • Speaker: “Sex Discrimination, Sexual Orientation, And Gender Identity,” NELA 2019 Annual Convention, New Orleans, LA

Blogs & Publications

Not Much Love in “Bro Love” Culture for Women Working in Tech

Challenges for women working in tech are very real. Though the pay gap may be less in the tech industry than other sectors (the New York Times reported that women in tech earn 89 cents for every dollar earned by men – as compared with the American average of 79 cents…

Pushing Back: How Women Can Influence Change in a Male-Dominated Workplace

Women often find themselves in a workplace culture dominated by traditionally male values, approaches to work, and ways of measuring success. To be included, accepted and advanced, women in a wide variety of professions, including finance, technology, medicine, and…

Jared and Kay Jewelers: When ‘Male Camaraderie’ Morphs into Toxic Corporate Culture

Sterling Jewelers, Inc., the parent company of Jared the Galleria of Jewelry and Kay Jewelers, is facing explosive allegations – and a national class action lawsuit – alleging its “boys club” culture discriminated against women and encouraged sexual harassment….

Promotion vs. Reality: Are Companies All Talk and No Action Regarding Workplace Gender Equality?

Gender equality in the workplace and eliminating the gender pay gap are hot topics in the news, with some large brands capitalizing on the discussion to attract female consumers. Using flashy ads, social media campaigns, and press releases, companies say that they’re…

Why Men Should be Taking Family Leave in California – and Elsewhere

Two years ago, when Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced he was taking paternity leave to spend time with his wife and newborn daughter, it was hailed as a breakthrough for paid family leave. Soon after, a rush of press releases from Twitter, Netflix,…

Nevertheless, We Must Persist: What Roy Moore’s Loss Means for Women in the Workplace

Although Doug Jones’ victory over Roy Moore in Alabama last week was by the smallest of margins (Jones won by just 0.5 percent), we can view this as part of a turning tide for American working women, for women professionals, political leaders, social leaders and the…

California Enacts Important New Parental Leave Law

Last week, California’s governor signed a bill that will expand parental leave rights to 2.7 million workers who are otherwise ineligible because they work for a small employer. Before this new legislation, only employees who work for companies with 50 or more…

About the Google Memo: Legal Imperatives, Moral Imperatives. Oh, and History, Statistics, and Facts, Too.

By now, we are all aware of former Google employee James Damore’s internally published manifesto complaining of a company culture of shaming that suppresses legitimate discussion about discrimination against women working in technology. In his memo, entitled “Google’s…

Post-World Cup Victory, U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team Continues to Drive Toward the Goal in Its Campaign for Equal Pay

“U.S.A.! Equal Pay! Equal Pay!” These chants from the crowd after the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team (USWNT) won the World Cup became the rallying cry behind its ongoing efforts to obtain pay equity for female athletes. Following the team’s second straight…

Religious Discrimination in the Workplace: Understanding Reasonable Accommodation

Over the last decade, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has received an average of 3,573 charges of religious discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Those are just the reported incidents; many more are suspected of going unreported,…

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6 Mistakes Leaders Make When Announcing Layoffs

Harvard Business Review, April 09, 2024

Awards & Recognition
  • 2021-2024: Best Lawyers: Employment Law – Individuals and Litigation – Labor and Employment
  • 2014-2021: Northern California Super Lawyers
  • 2023: Super Lawyers – Super Lawyer
  • 2021: Lawdragon 500 Plaintiff Employment Lawyers
  • 2023: Lawdragon 500 Civil Rights & Plaintiff Employment Lawyer
  • 2016, 2019: Northern California Women’s Edition Super Lawyers
  • 2014-2018: San Francisco Magazine, Top Attorneys In Northern California
  • 2018: Ms. Schwartz was recognized by the Center for Women in Law as a “Power Player.”
  • 2014, 2016 and 2017: San Francisco Magazine, Top Women Attorneys In Northern California