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Jason Shinn is a Michigan lawyer with nearly ten years of experience as a legal counselor and trial attorney for local and national privately held companies, publicly traded companies, as well as start-up companies in numerous industries, including manufacturing, Internet and e-commerce, finance, health, technology, and telecommunications. His legal practice and professional interests, however, focuses on the following subjects:
Employment Law: Mr. Shinn's goal is to provide HR professionals and employers with practical, business-minded guidance on all aspects of the employment relationship.
- Mr. Shinn is experienced in responding to state and federal employment matters involving discrimination, harassment, accommodation of disabilities, family and medical leave, wage payment, labor relations, investigating employee misconduct, facility closings, the hiring and termination process, and noncompete agreements.
- He also routinely advises on the challenges presented by a workplace perpetually redefined by technology. Such matters include drafting technology use policies, electronic monitoring, telecommuting, social media issues, on-line defamation, and investigating employee misconduct and theft involving computers and digital information, and responding to matters under state and federal computer statutes, such as the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Mr. Shinn's deep knowledge of employment and technology matters has resulted in him being retained by other attorneys to address various technology/employment law issues in state and federal courts. He has also lectured extensively on such topics, including to insurance claims professionals responsible for handling claims filed under Employment Practice Liability policies.
- Mr. Shinn also routinely prepares, reviews, and updates employment related documents including offer and termination letters, employment contracts, employment handbooks and policies, and non-competition agreements, and work made-for-hire agreements. He provides employment updates and training programs for clients' executives and managers.
- He has represented clients before both federal and state administrative agencies and in federal and state courts on employment matters involving a full-range of matters, including claims under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Michigan's Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA), Persons with Disabilities Civil Rights Act (PDCRA) and the Americans with Disability Act (ADA), retaliation and whistle blower claims, Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)), as well as trade secret misappropriation claims, breach of non-compete agreements, and negligent hiring claims.
- Mr. Shinn also assists and often takes the lead in investigating employee misconduct, especially misconduct involving computer, Internet, or digital information. He has even worked with employers to investigate employee wrongful conduct that was the subject of a parallel federal investigation. That investigation eventually resulted in federal charges and subsequent convictions against the client's former employees with no charges filed against the employer.
- Jason shares his employment law experience and insight through the Michigan Employment Law Advisor. This on-line publication also provides analysis of national and Michigan employment related news and trends.
Trademark, Copyright, and Trade Secret Law: Mr. Shinn collaborates primarily with individuals and small to medium size companies that do not have trademark or copyright expertise to address strategies to protect and monetize inventions, creations and ideas. He works with these clients to obtain trademark, copyright and trade secret protection (collectively intellectual property or IP), enforce the rights of intellectual property owners when their rights are violated, or defend against claims of infringement, trade dress, or unfair competition claims. Mr. Shinn also works with employers and business organizations in securing IP, including the drafting agreements under the "works made for hire" doctrine.
Electronic Discovery: Mr. Shinn is an experienced electronic discovery ("e-discovery") lawyer. This electronic discovery law experience dates back to 2001. As an e-discovery attorney, Mr. Shinn has represented corporate clients and assisted in-house counsel to comply with their ethical and legal obligations under state and federal e-discovery law. More importantly, Mr. Shinn's electronic discovery experience includes significant reduction in litigation costs to corporate clients. Also, this e-discovery experience routinely provides clients and their attorneys a solid foundation to respond to challenges presented by electronic discovery, as well as to leverage opportunities. Representative e-discovery matters include:
- National Electronic Discovery Counsel for international tire manufacturer. Mr. Shinn was responsible for addressing e-discovery matters in over a hundred product liability claims filed across the United States. This required addressing the business needs of the client while balancing its legal and ethical obligations to preserve and produce digital information claimed to be relevant to the various suits, and coordinating with numerous stakeholders ranging from outside trial counsel, inside counsel, corporate officers, and IT professionals.
- Retained as Electronic Discovery consultant. Mr. Shinn has been retained by lawyers as an electronic discovery expert in state and federal courts to plan and implement both an offensive and defensive e-discovery strategy in preparation for pending litigation.
- Electronic Discovery Consultant for design of Insurance Endorsement. Mr. Shinn has been asked to consult with a major insurance carrier because of his technical expertise with electronic discovery. This same e-discovery experience has also resulted in requests to present to numerous insurance claims professionals on how to effectively manage the costs and risks associated with electronic discovery.
- Forensic Inspections of Computer Hard drives: Mr. Shinn's has extensive electronic discovery experience in state and federal courts pursuing and responding to forensic examinations of hard drives, databases, and email.
- Preservation, Collection, Review, Production, and Legal Holds: Mr. Shinn has extensive electronic discovery experience managing all aspects of e-discovery from the trigger date for preserving digital information through the lifting of the legal hold. Specifically, Mr. Shinn routinely works with IT professionals and management at the outset of litigation to implement a defensible preservation plan that makes business and meets the client's legal obligations, From there, he has used various solutions, in-house or third-party applications, to organize and review digital information ranging from megabytes up to hundreds of gigabytes (100 Gigabytes could hold the entire library floor of academic journals).
Education: Mr. Shinn earned his J.D. from Wayne State University Law School in 2001 and earned his B.S. in Psychology from Central Michigan University in 1997. Mr. Shinn graduated from Wayne State cum laude and in the top 20% of his class. While at Central Michigan, Mr. Shinn was awarded a research grant relating to replicating the biological effect of Huntington disease in rodents.
Bar Admissions: Mr. Shinn is admitted to practice in Michigan and Ohio. He is also admitted to practice in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern and Western Districts of Michigan, and the U.S. District Court Northern District of Ohio.
- Michigan Bar Association - Commercial Litigation Committee;
- Defense Research Institute - Employment Law and E-discovery Committee;
- Automation Alley's ConnectTech - Member; and
- Compliance Governance and Oversight Council - Member.
Published Works and Presentations:
- 2011 Thomas M. Cooley Law Review Symposium, Data Mining: Who's Mining Your Business?
- The Impact of the Electronic Revolution on Employment Liability Claims, Continuing Education Presentation to various insurance claim professionals, 2008;
- Adding to the Playbook: Protecting Against Misappropriation of Competitive Advantages, Article appearing in Michigan Manufacturing Insight, 2008;
- The Corporate Playbook: Responding to E-discovery Challenges, Presentation to in-house counsel and C-Level management of various companies, 2008;
- Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e)'s Safe Harbor: What You Need to Know to Protect Your Firm and Your Clients, Podcast for Legal Technology Radio, 2008;
- Breaking from the Digital Flock: Responding to Litigation Involving Electronically Stored Information, Article appearing in Mich Bus Law Journal, 2007;
- Taming Pandora's Electronic Box? Piecing together the Amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, In-house Presentation for Lipson, Neilson, Cole, Seltzer & Garin, P.C., 2006;
- Employees Beware: The CFAA Provides Employers with a Cause of Action Against Employees Who Destroy Company Digital Data, Article in Labor & Employment Law Notes, 2006;
- Conducting Electronic Discovery in Employment Litigation, Lucas County Bar Association Presentation, 2003; and
- Pandora's Electronic Box: Electronic Discovery in Litigation, Ohio Judicial Conference, 2003.