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Michelle E. Phillips

White Plains

P 914-872-6899
F 914-946-1216


Michelle E. Phillips is a Principal in the White Plains office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Ms. Phillips is a member of the firm's Diversity Committee. Ms. Phillips handles various types of employment litigation with an emphasis on sexual and racial harassment and LGBT matters. She also counsels clients on a variety of labor and employment matters concerning Federal and State employment laws. She frequently conducts and advises clients on internal investigations and leads employment discrimination, diversity, sexual harassment and LGBT seminars and webinars for a broad range of clients.

Ms. Phillips is a featured speaker at HRNY, NY and CT SHRM, ACC Corporate Counsel, Out & Equal Workplace Conference and other prominent organizations. Ms. Phillips conducts training on race, ethnic, intergenerational, interfaith, LGBT & other inclusion issues. She is a national speaker on such issues as an employer's duty to accommodate the sincerely held religious beliefs of employees, sexual stereotyping in the workplace and respecting each individual's gender identity & expression. 

Pro Bono and Community Involvement

  • International Community Service Day Foundation, Executive Committee Board President (1996-1999); Executive Committee Board Member (1994-1996)

Honors and Recognitions

The Legal 500 - The Clients Guide to Law Firms

Published Works

  • "Sexual Harassment and Sexual Favoritism in the 'Gay Nineties,'" NYU Conference on Sexual Harassment In The Workplace, 1999. [Co-Author]
  • "EEOC Guidance on Sexual Harassment for Supervisors," Sexual Harassment Litigation Reporter (August 1999) [Author]
  • "Confidential Allegations: Employers Must Investigate Sexual Harassment Claims," New York Law Journal (September 8, 1997) [Author]
  • "Psychiatric Experts in Sexual Harassment Cases: A Critical Component of Defendant’s Arsenal," New Jersey Law Journal (October 1996) [Author]

See AllMichelle E. Phillips in the News

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March 20, 2018
Business Insurance

Michelle Phillips Discusses the Sixth Circuit Extending Title VII Gender Protections to Transgender and Gender Transitioning Employees

March 20, 2018

Michelle Phillips discusses the recent ruling in EEOC v. R.G. &. G.R. Harris Funeral Homes, Inc. that Title VII prohibits employers from discriminating on the basis of transgender and gender transitioning statuses in "Appellate rulings push transgender fight closer to high court," published by Business Insurance.  Read More

March 8, 2018
Law 360

Michelle Phillips Discusses the Recent Court Ruling That Title VII Covers Transgender and Transitioning Employees

March 8, 2018

Michelle Phillips discusses the Sixth Circuit siding with the EEOC’s position on the scope of Title VII relative to gender identity in Stephens v. R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes, Inc. in "EEOC's Trans Bias Win Exposes Shakiness Of RFRA Defense," published by Law360. Subscription may be required to view article Read More

February 27, 2018

Michelle Phillips Discusses the Disagreement Among Appeals Courts Over Title VII Barring Sexual Orientation Discrimination

February 27, 2018

Michelle Phillips discusses the split among appeals courts over whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits sexual orientation discrimination in "Title VII Bars Sexual Orientation Discrimination, 2nd Circuit Decides," published by SHRM. Subscription may be required to view article Read More

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March 8, 2018

Title VII Anti-Discrimination Protection Covers Transgender Employee, Appeals Court Rules

March 8, 2018

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission may pursue claims that an employee was discriminated against on the basis of transgender status in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the federal appeals court in Cincinnati has ruled in a landmark decision. EEOC v. R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes, No. 16-2424 (6th Cir. Mar. 7... Read More

February 27, 2018

Title VII Bars Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation, Second Circuit Rules

February 27, 2018

In a much-anticipated decision, the federal appeals court in New York has held that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on an individual’s sexual orientation. Zarda v. Altitude Express, No. 15-3775 (2d Cir. Feb. 26, 2018). In its 10-3 decision, the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit... Read More

February 12, 2018

New York City Expands Definitions of ‘Sexual Orientation’ and ‘Gender’ in Human Rights Law

February 12, 2018

A new law passed by the New York City Council amends and significantly broadens the definitions of “sexual orientation” and “gender” in the New York City Human Rights Law (NYCHRL). The new law will become effective on May 11, 2018.  Under Int. No. 1186-A, “sexual orientation” includes “an individual’s actual or perceived romantic... Read More

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Watch Now

Sexual Stereotyping & Gender Identity in the Workplace: Recent Developments

September 17, 2015 - 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM EST

Credits: Continuing education credit was offered for the live broadcast of this seminar.
You cannot earn credit for watching the archived webinar.

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See AllBlog Posts by Michelle E. Phillips

California Adds ‘Transgender,’ ‘Gender Nonconforming Individuals’ to Sexual Harassment Prevention Training for Supervisors
October 30, 2017

Employers subject to California’s mandatory sexual harassment training requirement for supervisors will need to ensure their programs include prevention of harassment based on gender identity, gender expression, and sexual orientation following an amendment (SB 396) to California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). Read More

Transgender Locker Room Policy Eludes School District Facing Government Sanctions Under Title IX
November 22, 2015

An Illinois school district has violated anti-discrimination laws by not allowing a transgender student who identifies as female and is on her high school’s girls’ sports team to change and shower in the girls’ locker room, the United States Department of Education Office of Civil Rights (“OCR”) has held. Read More

By Michelle E. Phillips, Bethany Swaton Wagner and Gregg E. Clifton

Defeating Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Discrimination on the Field
May 10, 2013

While Jason Collins, the first male professional athlete currently playing on a U.S. Read More