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Mark S. Askanas

San Francisco

P 415-394-9400
F 415-394-9401


Mark S. Askanas is a Principal in the San Francisco, California, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He joined the firm in 1988 and is a senior employment law litigator who has served as lead counsel for cases in state and federal courts, as well as arbitration forums, throughout the western United States.

Mr. Askanas specializes in complex litigation, including class actions and cases involving trade secrets and confidential information. He also counsels employers on all facets of employment law including, but not limited to, wage and hour issues and best preventive employment practices. He regularly speaks throughout the United States to employer groups and trade associations on these and other topics.

Mr. Askanas also has substantial in-house experience having served as General Counsel of a Fortune 500 company where he worked closely with the board of directors, audit committee, and senior management managing risk and advising on legal developments and issues, including Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, corporate governance, transactional matters, and preventive nationwide litigation and class action avoidance strategies.

Honors and Recognitions

  • Who's Who Legal (2006-2007)

Published Works

  • “Retailers Beware: Statements May Not Be Protected,” Employment Law 360 (April 19, 2010)
  • "Strict Liability in Sexual Harassment: Too Strict a Standard," California Employment Law Journal .12 (December 1997, Assisted in Updating Chapters)
  • "Sexual Harassment in the Physician Workplace," California Physician (April 1991)

See AllMark S. Askanas in the News

April 20, 2015
Law 360

Mark Askanas Comments on Retailers' Use of On-Call Policies

April 20, 2015

Law 360 quotes Mark Askanas in "On-Call Policy Scrutiny May Force Retail Staffing Changes." View Article (subscription may be required)   Read More

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January 2, 2018

Retail Industry Workplace Law Update – Winter 2018

January 2, 2018

Re-Examining Employer Anti-Sexual Harassment Practices With the increased focus on workplace harassment, the time is now for employers to review their practices for preventing and addressing harassment. Read full article… Labor Board General Counsel Plans New Course National Labor Relations Board General Counsel Peter Robb has... Read More

October 4, 2017

Retail Industry Workplace Law Update – Fall 2017

October 4, 2017

Oregon Enacts Scheduling Legislation Oregon has become the first U.S. state to regulate employer scheduling practices in the retail, food service, and hospitality industries. Read full article… States Strengthen Protections for Pregnant Workers Employers should plan to comply with changes to Connecticut, Massachusetts, and... Read More

July 6, 2017

Retail Industry Workplace Law Update - Summer 2017

July 6, 2017

U.S. Supreme Court: Plaintiffs May Not Voluntarily Dismiss Case to Appeal Class Certification Decision Curbing a litigation tactic used by class action plaintiffs, U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that such plaintiffs may not voluntarily dismiss their claims upon receiving an adverse class certification decision and subsequently invoke 28... Read More

Showing 1-3 of 16

See AllBlog Posts by Mark S. Askanas

What California Retail Employers Need to Know About Accommodating Pregnancy
January 29, 2016

Navigating the California laws on discrimination and accommodation of pregnant employees is a significant challenge for retail employers. The Golden State’s protections for pregnant employees are many and they differ from those of federal law and of other states. Read More

By Mark S. Askanas and Rebecca Benhuri

U.S. Supreme Court Rejects California Limitation on Arbitration Agreements with Class Action Waivers
December 29, 2015

Despite recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions strongly upholding the enforceability of class action waivers in arbitration agreements, opposition to class action waivers on both the political and legal fronts persists, especially in California. Read More

By Mark S. Askanas and James A. McKenna

California Court Holds Arbitrator Decides Class Arbitrability Where Agreement Specifies AAA Rules
August 26, 2015

An employment arbitration agreement that incorporated the American Arbitration Association’s National Rules for the Resolution of Employment Disputes vested the arbitrator with the power to decide whether the agreement authorized class-wide relief, the California Court of Appeal has ruled. Universal Protection Service LP v. Read More