Employment Law Services Human Resources Consulting Business Etiquette Training

 

SAFFIRE LEGAL


Combining years of litigation and transactional experience to provide employers and employees with education, training, and legal advice on forging and maintaining successful employee/employer relationships.
 
 

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SAFFIRE LEGAL was founded by Southern California attorney Teresa A. McQueen. Who, after years of litigating civil rights based employment law disputes and providing general counsel services to employers, saw the need for a different type of employment law firm. One free from the partisan obligations of litigation representation that could provide education, training, and sound legal advice from a perspective that assesses risk from a knowledgebase solid on both the employee and employer perspectives.

 

Teresa A. McQueen is principal of SAFFIRE LEGAL. A former Named Associate at the Orange County Law Firm of Pedersen • McQueen, APLC. Teresa is an experienced trial attorney and provider of general counsel services to various California businesses. Developing statutorily complaint policies and procedures, advising clients on HR best practices and consulting on training opportunities have long been a practice mainstay. In her career as a litigator Teresa successfully represented plaintiffs in civil rights litigation matters protecting against discrimination, harassment and retaliation based on race, sex (including pregnancy and gender), sexual orientation, mental and physical disability, age, denial of family and medical care leave, and denial of pregnancy disability leave. While at Pedersen McQueen, APLC Teresa was also heavily involved in planning and implementing defense side strategies on all of the firms employer-related litigation matters.

At SAFFIRE LEGAL, Teresa now applies the skills and strategies learned as a litigator and general counsel attorney to providing employers and employees with education, training, and legal advice on forging and maintaining successful employee/employer relationships.

Teresa’s outstanding efforts on behalf of her clients have earned her recognition among her peers as she was selected in 2007, 2012 and again in 2013 as a Southern California Super Lawyers “Rising Star” and was recognized as a 2013 Top Women Attorney – Southern California Outstanding Young Women Lawyers by Law & Politics and the publishers of Los Angeles Magazine.


Curriculum Vitae

Teresa is admitted to practice before all California courts.

EDUCATION & TRAINING

J.D., Chapman University School of Law, Orange, CA, May 2002

Bachelor of Dance, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID, December 1988

 

  • California Basic Practice Handbook, Published by Continuing Education of the Bar (CEB), November 2015 (Editor, Chapter 4 Pre-Trial Discovery); Editor Update pending Fall 2016
  • California Basic Practice Handbook, Published by Continuing Education of the Bar (CEB), November 2015 (Editor, Chapter 3 Preparing, Filing, and Serving Complaints and Answers and Chapter 4 Pre-Trial Discovery)
  • Handling Motions to Compel and Other Discovery Motions, Published by Continuing Education of the Bar, December 2013 (Editor) Updated (October 2015)
  • The California Guide to Growing and Managing a Law Office, Published by the State Bar of California Fall 2012 (Contributing Author)
  • Op-Ed: California Attorney Guidelines of Civility and Professionalism Big News – Magazine of the Solo/Small Firm Section of the State Bar of California (November-December 2007)
  • Tulare Lake Basin Water Storage District, et al., v. United States: Takings Victory or ESA Reform Test Case? Hot Topics Report Published in the ABA Nat’l Quarterly on State and Local Govt. Law the Urban Lawyer Vol. No. 37, Issue No. 3. (Summer 2005)
  • Beyond Litigation: Case Studies in Water Rights Disputes, Published by the Environmental Law Institute, January 2002, Chapter 3 pages 79-101. (Student author, First Edition, January 2002)
  • California Motions in Limine, Published by Esquire One Publishing , May 2000, updated October 2001 (Research Assistant First Edition, May 2000, Editor/Co-Author and Research Advisor 2001 Update, October 2001)
  • Litigating Disability Discrimination Cases – A Plaintiff and Defense Perspective: From Intake, Discovery and Summary Judgment (Upcoming October 2016) State Bar of California Annual Meeting: Panel presentation on litigating disability discrimination claims from the plaintiff and defense perspectives – employer’s best practices pre-litigation, the  importance of a thorough intake by Plaintiff’s counsel, through discovery and summary judgment.
  • Depositions In Employment Cases (July 2016) Continuing Education of the Bar (CEB): Solo presentation providing tips on preparing and effectively deposing witnesses, successfully using deposition testimony during discovery, settlement, and trial in employment law matters.
  • Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: What Every Employer Should Know in 2016 (June 2016) State Bar of California Solo & Small Firm Summit: Panel presentation providing an overview from the plaintiff’s and defense perspective of the laws, cases and regulations pertaining to bringing and defending claims of workplace sexual harassment including updates on recent changes to the Fair Employment & Housing Council’s regulations.
  • Honing Your Client Intake Skills to Avoid Practice Challenges (October 2015) State Bar Annual Meeting: Interactive panel presentation focusing on identifying the most common causes of attorney-client discord and how to deal with them before problems erupt. The presentation also addressed how to recognize and adjust unreasonable client expectations, and how to identify and address troubling client characteristics.
  • Emerging Issues on the Impact of Social Media in the Workplace (June 2015) State Bar of California Solo & Small Firm Summit: Panel presentation discussing important emerging issues in the area of Social Media and its impact on the workplace from the plaintiff and defense perspectives.
  • Tips from the Bench and Bar: Handling Discovery Motions (April 2014) Orange County Bar Association: Panel presentation offering insights from the Bench and Bar on preparing, filing, and arguing discovery motions.
  • Trending Employment Law Causes of Action (September/October 2013) Continuing Education of the Bar: Panel presentation discussing current legislation/cases and their impact on trending employment law causes of action.
  • Social Media’s Impact in Employment Litigation and the Workplace (June 2013) State Bar of California Solo & Small Firm Summit: Panel Presentation exploring the expanding aspect of the impact of social media in employment litigation from the plaintiff and defense perspectives.
  • Your Client’s Deposition: Preparation Tips and Strategies (June 2013) State Bar of California Solo & Small Firm Summit: Panel presentation on methods to develop confident and knowledgeable clients and attorneys who will be able to competently perform in deposition.
  • Evidence Tricks and Traps for the Civil Practitioner (October 2012) State Bar of California Annual Meeting 2012: Panel Presentation on learning the tricks of the trade when it comes to the admissibility of evidence in civil litigation.
  • Social Media’s Impact in Employment Litigation and the Workplace (October 2012) State Bar of California Annual Meeting 2012: Panel Presentation exploring the expanding aspect of the impact of social media in employment litigation from the plaintiff and defense perspectives.
  • Your Client’s Deposition: Preparation Tips and Strategies (March 2012) State Bar of California Solo Small Firm Section Webinar: Panel presentation on methods to develop confident and knowledgeable clients and attorneys who will be able to competently perform in deposition.
  • Survival Tips for Opposing Summary Judgment Motions: A Plaintiff’s Perspective (September 2010) State Bar of California Annual Meeting 2010: Solo presentation on opposing summary judgment motions from the opposition perspective. The program offers practical tips and the sharing of “lessons learned the hard way” on staying organized, managing time and documents, and preparing a winning opposition.
  • The Laws Concerning Privacy Issues in The Age of Technology (September 2009) State Bar of California Annual Meeting 2009: Panel presentation on the developing law in the area of workplace privacy: constitutional and common law privacy protection, an employers decision to monitor as well as prohibited activities under California law.
  • Ethics and the Implications of the New Civility Rules of Professional Conduct (January 2008) State Bar of California Section Education Institute 2008: Panel presentation on the State Bar’s new civility rules and their impact on the everyday practice of law.
  • Human Resources 101 For Small Businesses (October 2007) ADP Payroll Services: Panel presentation on basic things every employer should know: Hiring Process, Classifying Employees, Offers of Employment, Policies and Procedures, Handling Problems, and Termination and Exit Interview Process.
  • Solo/Small Firm Practice (July 2006) Orange County Bar Association Bridging the Gap: Presentation on starting a solo/small firm practice.
Selected as a Southern California Super Lawyers “Rising Star” by Law & Politics and the publishers of Los Angeles Magazine for 2007, 2012, and 2013. Recognized as a 2013 Top Women Attorney – Southern California Outstanding Young Women Lawyers by Law & Politics and the publishers of Los Angeles Magazine.

State Bar of California (Bar Number 225094)

  • Solo and Small Firm Executive Committee Member 2006 – 2013
  • Chair Solo/Small Firm Executive Committee 2010-2011
  • Chair-Elect Solo/Small Firm Executive Committee 2010
  • Treasurer Solo/Small Firm Executive Committee 2009
  • Solo and Small Firm Section Member 2004 – Present
  • Labor and Employment Law Section Member 2010 – Present
  • Conference of Delegates of California Bar Associations: OCBA Delegate 2004 – Present

Orange County Bar Association Member:

  • OCBA Board Member –YLD Appointee 2007; Elected Terms 2008 – 2011; 2011-2013
  • Bridging the Gap Committee Member – 2006 – Present
  • Charitable Fund Committee Member – 2012
  • Co-Chair Mentor on Demand – 2008 – 2011, 2014 – Present
  • Co-Chair Bridging the Gap Committee – 2009 – Present
  • Chair Resolutions Committee – 2011
  • Resolutions Committee – Employment Law Specialty Group Leader – 2003 – Present
  • Solo/Small Firm Section – Section Chair 2006; Section Secretary 2005
  • Solo/Small Firm Section Executive Board Member – 2003 – 2010
  • Solo/Small Firm Section Member 2003 – Present
  • Solo/Small Firm Section Member 2003 – Present
  • Young Lawyers Division – Chair 2007; Chair-Elect 2006; Ed. Comm. Chair 2005;

California Employment Lawyers Association (CELA) 2008-2016