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Debra Weiss Ford

Office Managing Principal and Office Litigation Manager

P 603-559-2700
F 603-559-2700


Debra Weiss Ford is Office Managing Principal and Litigation Manager of the Portsmouth, New Hampshire, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. She has more than 35 years of experience representing employers in litigation matters before the state and federal courts and administrative agencies.

Ms. Ford also represents employers before the New Hampshire Commission for Human Rights, the Maine Human Rights Commission, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the New Hampshire Department of Labor, and the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination.

Ms. Ford trains frequently in New England on issues related to employment law, including discrimination, wrongful discharge, reductions in force, termination issues, wage and hour issues, proper documentation, leaves of absence, and Title IX compliance. She regularly advises clients on employment-related matters.

Ms. Ford was a member of the New Hampshire Board of Bar Examiners from 1993 to 2005. She was appointed by the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire to serve on the Merit Selection Panel to consider the reappointment of the incumbent magistrate. In 2003, she was appointed to serve on the Federal Court Advisory Committee. She is an approved federal and state mediator.

Honors and Recognitions

  • Best Lawyers’ Manchester Employment Law, Management Lawyer of the Year
  • Business New Hampshire Magazine, "Best Labor and Employment attorney in New Hampshire"
  • The College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, Fellow (2006)
  • American Lawyer Media, Top Rated Lawyer
  • New Hampshire Magazine, Top New Hampshire Lawyers in Labor and Employment
  • The Trial Lawyer Honorary Society by the Litigation Counsel of America, Fellow (2014)
Best Lawyers Award Badge
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Debra Weiss Ford
Rated by Super Lawyers

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Chambers USA 2019 - Debra Weiss Ford
Martindale-Hubbell 2019 - Debra Weiss Ford
The Legal 500 - The Clients Guide to Law Firms
The College of Labor and Employment Lawyers - Debra Weiss Ford

Professional Associations and Activities

  • American Arbitration Association
  • American Bar Association
  • American Board of Trial Advocates
  • American Trial Lawyers Association
  • Maine State Bar Association
  • Massachusetts State Bar Association
  • National Association of College and University Attorneys
  • New Hampshire State Bar Association
  • New Hampshire Trial Lawyers Association

Pro Bono and Community Involvement

  • 1st Tee, Board of Directors (2005-2006); Honorary Board Member (2005-2008)
  • End 68 Hours of Hunger, Board Member
  • NHSPCA, Board of Directors (2004-2011)
  • Portsmouth Music Hall, Board Member
  • Rockingham Community Action, Board of Directors (2009-2011)
  • Seacoast Human Resources Association, Board Member

Published Works

  • Workplace Privacy, New Hampshire Chapter (Thompson Publishing Group)

See AllDebra Weiss Ford in the News

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August 15, 2019
Jackson Lewis

The Best Lawyers in America 2020 Honors Jackson Lewis Attorneys

August 15, 2019

WHITE PLAINS, NY (August 15, 2019) Jackson Lewis P.C., one of the country’s preeminent workplace law firms, is pleased to announce more than 210 attorneys throughout the firm’s locations have been recognized in the 2020 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America, a publication that has become universally regarded as a definitive... Read More

June 28, 2019
Business NH Magazine

Debra Weiss Ford and Kevin Sibbernsen Author "Interrupting Unconscious Bias in the Workplace"

June 28, 2019

 Debra Weiss Ford and Kevin Sibbernsen author "Interrupting Unconscious Bias in the Workplace," published by Business NH Magazine.  Subscription may be required to view article Read More

May 30, 2019
Jackson Lewis

Jackson Lewis Recommended in The Legal 500 2019

May 30, 2019

WHITE PLAINS, NY (May 30, 2019) Jackson Lewis P.C., one of the country’s preeminent workplace law firms, is pleased to announce the firm and its attorneys have been recommended in The Legal 500 United States 2019 in the following practice areas falling under the Labor and Employment designation: Employee Benefits, Executive Compensation... Read More

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June 13, 2019

New Maine Law Requires Employers to Provide Employees Paid Leave to Use for ‘Any Reason’

June 13, 2019

Maine Governor Janet Mills has signed into law “An Act Authorizing Earned Employee Leave,” the first law in the nation to allow employees to use mandated paid leave for any reason. The new law, signed on May 28, will take effect on January 1, 2021. Approximately 85 percent of Maine’s private sector employees will receive paid leave under... Read More

June 13, 2018

New Hampshire Prohibits Gender Identity Discrimination

June 13, 2018

New Hampshire became the 20th state in the country to prohibit discrimination of all forms based upon gender identity when Governor Chris Sununu signed House Bill 1319 into law on June 8, 2018. The law goes into effect on July 8, 2018. House Bill 1319 adds “gender identity” to the list of protected classes under the New Hampshire Law... Read More

June 5, 2018

Maine’s New Recreational Marijuana Law Permits Employers to Enforce Policies Restricting Use

June 5, 2018

Maine’s new recreational marijuana law permits employers to enforce workplace policies restricting the use of marijuana and to take disciplinary action in accordance with those workplace policies. The new law, which took effect on May 2, 2018, replaced one that had been the subject of controversy, particularly with regard to certain... Read More

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See AllBlog Posts by Debra Weiss Ford

Paid Leave Law in Maine Passes Legislature and Waits for Governor Signature
May 23, 2019

The Maine legislature recently passed An Act Authorizing Earned Employee Leave. If Governor Mills, who has been vocal in her support of the bill, signs the bill into law, it would take effect on January 1, 2021. Read More

Former Winery Employees Awarded $11 million
February 14, 2019

Plaintiffs Megan Meadowcroft and Amanda Brown, two winery employees, alleged that they had been harassed on numerous occasions by their supervisor, General Manager Pinero. Specifically, Brown alleged that Pinero attempted to flirt with her, and physically made contact with her. Read More

By Debra Weiss Ford and Samuel V. Maxwell