Neil Klingshirn

Neil Klingshirn

Representing people and companies in employment and business disputes
  • Employment Law, Business Law, Arbitration & Mediation
  • Ohio
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Neil is an AV rated Super Lawyer and Board Certified Employment law Specialist. He is a passionate, resourceful and tireless advocate who has represented individuals and companies in employment and business disputes for over 30 years.

Neil began his legal practice at Squire, Sanders & Dempsey in Cleveland in 1986. He practiced employment law with his own firm from 1993 until 2016, when he joined Elfvin, Klingshirn, Royer & Torch, LLC.

Neil's knowledge and experience work for his clients. "I grew up on a Lake Erie winery. There I learned hard work and the values I use today. I worked ever since in Northeast Ohio, representing people and companies. I know how to avoid legal trouble and, if legal trouble finds my clients before they find me, how to resolve it for them."

Neil is an experienced litigator, licensed to practice in all Ohio state and federal courts. He discusses litigation with his clients as an investment of their legal fees, with strategies designed to deliver positive returns. Happily, Neil has not had to appeal an adverse decision on behalf of a client for many years, but he keeps his appellate skills polished by writing amicus briefs in the Ohio Supreme Court in cases that affect Ohio employees. Neil does so on behalf of the Ohio Employment Lawyers Association, where he is a Board Member.

Practice Areas
  • Employment Law
  • Business Law
  • Arbitration & Mediation
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Contingent Fees
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
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6th Circuit
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  • English: Spoken, Written
Professional Experience
Elfvin, Klingshirn, Royer & Torch, LLC
- Current
Fortney & Klingshirn
Millisor & Nobil (nka Fisher & Phillips)
Squire, Sanders & Dempsey LLP
The Ohio State University Michael E. Moritz College of Law
J.D. | Law
Honors: Order of the Coif
Activities: Law Journal Article Editor Student Funded Fellowship Founder and Trustee
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Kent State University
B.B.A. | Accounting
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Super Lawyer
Super Lawyers
2005 - 2019
AV Preeminent
Peer Rated for Highest Level of Professional Excellence
Superb 10
Professional Associations
Ohio State Bar
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National Employment Lawyer's Association
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Ohio Employment Lawyer's Association
Board Member
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Protecting Ohio's Employees
Founder and Board Member
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Lorain Sailing & Yacht Club
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Community Legal Aid Services, Inc.
Board Member
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Articles & Publications
Representing Clients with Serious Mental Health Conditions
Cleveland Employment Lawyers' Association
Current Issues under the FMLA
Ohio State Bar Association - Midwest Labor Law Conference
Employer Liability for Breaches of Employee Confidential Information
Ohio State Bar Association - Midwest Labor Law Conference
Taking Leave of FMLA Confusion - Tackling the Tough FMLA Issues
Ohio State Bar Association - Midwest Labor Law Conference
Non-competition Agreements - Summary of Law
Cleveland Employment Lawyers' Association
You be the Judge - Enforcing Non-Competition Agreements
Ohio State Bar Association - Midwest Labor Law Conference
Retaliation claims - They Keep on Giving
Ohio State Bar Association - Federal Bench Bar Conference
Statutes of Limitations - The Answers to All of Your Questions
Ohio Employment Lawyers Association
Resolving Non-competition Disputes Before the Breach
Ohio State Bar Association - Midwest Labor Law Conference
Unlock Non-compete Agreements - Keys to Escape
Unlock Non-compete Agreements
Federal Law Update
Ohio Employment Lawyers Association
The Case for the Arbitration Fairness Act
Ohio State Bar Association - Annual Convention
Speaking Engagements
Non-competition Litigation - A Chess Match in 3D, Midwest Labor Law Conference, Columbus, Ohio
Non-competition Litigation - A Chess Match in 3D, Midwest Labor Law Conference, Columbus, Ohio
Basics of Employment Law - Age Discrimination, Ohio State Bar Association - Continuing Legal Education, Columbus, Ohio
Certified Specialist - Labor & Employment Law
Ohio State Bar Association
Websites & Blogs
Legal Answers
8 Questions Answered

Q. Can someone file a 1099 on me without any information because I work for cash for him and that was not our agreement
A: Your employer has an obligation to report your income to the IRS. You cannot agree with your employer to keep secret the money you earn. If you are an independent contractor, your employer should report your income to the IRS on a 1099. If you are an employee, your employer should report your income on a W-2. The issue that usually comes up is that you are an employee (not an independent contractor) but the employer reports to the IRS that you are an independent contractor and submits a 1099. In that case you end up a paying self-employment tax of about 6.5%. If you are in fact an employee, your employer would pay that tax. Therefore, when employers misclassify employees as independent contractors, the employee pays a tax that the employer should have paid, equal to 6.5% of their pay. Assuming you were an employee, which is based on the facts and not what the employer says, then the solution is to report to the IRS that you were an employee, not an independent contractor. The IRS should investigate and, if the facts show that you were an employee, the IRS will collect the tax from the employer, not you.
Q. Unpaid work/hours at a job. Is it legal
A: It depends on whether they do that every day for the week. Overtime is paid by the week. If you work over 40 hours in a week and you are not exempt from overtime, your employer must pay 1.5 times your regular rate of pay. If you work 10 hours a day for five days a week, you are entitled to 10 hours paid at time and a half. It is not clear from your question whether you are actually working 12 hours but are paid only for 10. If so, you are also entitled to time and a half for the two "off the clock" hours that you worked each day, which would bring your unpaid overtime to 20 hours for that week. If you want to discuss your pay history in detail, call 216.382.2500 and ask to speak to Stuart Torch. He is the overtime guru at Elfvin, Klingshirn, Royer & Torch and does not charge a consultation fee for brief phone calls.
Q. Can my employer request me to come in 15 min early and not pay me? I have done this for 5 years with out fail.
A: You may have a claim for breach of contract with your employer. The contract was to pay you $X per hour for each hour worked. If you and your employer intended that this included the early 15 minutes, then once you work those minutes you are entitled to payment for them. If, on the other hand, you expressly agreed that you would not be paid for showing up early, then you may not have a contract claim. What matters with contracts is what the parties intended when they made their agreement. You file suit for breach of an oral contract claim for up to six years in Ohio. In other words, your claim would cover all five years of this practice. You may have another, independent claim for a minimum wage violation. The minimum wage in Ohio is currently $8.55. If you were paid the minimum or something close to minimum, then working off the clock time could reduce the actual amount that you received each hour below the minimum, and there would be a violation. You can claim unpaid minimum wages for up to three years. You may also have an overtime claim if, when you include the show up early time, you worked more than 40 hours in a week. You can claim unpaid overtime for up to three years.
Q. Can an employer of an hourly employee contact an employees doctor in order to dictate or change a doctors slip?
A: The Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act restrict an employer's access to employee medical records and information from the employee's treatment providers. As a result, employers are generally limited to seeking clarifications of a doctor's orders. Employers should not be able to intervene in the order, change it or dictate restrictions. In addition, under Ohio common law, an employer that induces a doctor to disclose an employee's medical information may be liable to the employee for invading the employee's privacy.
Q. In Ohio, our LLC has no operating agreement, how are votes figured and do you need majority or unanimous?
A: Unless changed by an Operating Agreement, which you don't have, Ohio limited liability companies makes operating decisions by a vote of a majority of their membership interests. Membership interests are the percentage of ownership that each member owns. Here is a link to ORC 1705, Ohio's limited liability law: This is the ORC section on Operating Agreements: How much each member owns, whether or not a person claiming to be a member is a member, and the extent of member rights and obligations are all rich targets for disputes among members of LLCs that do not have an operating agreement. You should consult with a business lawyer and get one right away.
Q. Hello I am helping my friend out with his single member LLC and we want to add me as a member. What steps would we tak
A: First, you and your friend should each consult your own attorney. Becoming a member of a limited liability company is economically similar to becoming a partner in a business. You will have rights and responsibilities with respect to your friend and should know what they are and whether you are prepared for them. Not understanding that is a great way to end up with a business partner who is no longer your friend. In addition, you should agree now on how to exit the business when the time comes and build the exit plan into the Operating Agreement. Unlike a marriage, most businesses do not lasts until your deaths. You will almost certainly want to part company before that. However, also unlike marriage, there is no divorce code for businesses, so you should address how to split up at the time of your formation. Finally, make sure you understand the consequences of your respective ownership shares and are willing to accept it. Unless you are 50/50 owners, which presents its own challenges, one of you will be the minority owner. My stock advice to clients is to avoid minority ownership. There are better alternatives.
Q. Can a company keep your vested amounts in a nonqualified deferred compensation plan after seperation?
A: Anybody can do anything they want, but there may be consequences. The better question is whether you can recover your vested deferred compensation if your employer wants to keep it for itself. If the deferred compensation program is covered by ERISA, you have a remedy under Section 510 of ERISA. That remedy lets you file suit in federal court and recover your attorneys' fees if you prevail. If the plan is not covered by ERISA, then state contract laws probably give you a remedy. You will have to prove that the deferred compensation plan was a contract between you and your employer, that the Plan says you are entitled to the amounts that vested, and that the employer kept those amounts. You would pursue this remedy in state court. The problem with pursuing a remedy is that it is expensive to do so. If the vested, deferred compensation is $10,000 but it would cost you $15,000 to recover it, the costs are too high to pursue the remedy. This is a modern example of the old saying, "possession is nine tenths of the law."
Q. Should i Bring a sexual Discrimination lawsuit against my employer?
A: Every case is different, so the best course is to get advice specific to your situation. That said, as a general rule you should evaluate the strength of the evidence for your claim, the amount of damages you could recover and the costs you will incur to recover those damages. Here, your claim is that gender discrimination is blocking your advancement to a better position. The manager's statement is direct evidence of that discrimination. You can testify that he said it, as can any of the other witnesses. It will help if someone else can verify that your manager made that statement. The more difficult part of your claim is damages. Once you prove that the company blocked your advancement because of your sex, you then have to prove that you lost something because of it, like higher wages or more hours from the promotion. Ohio and federal law also allow courts to compensate you for your non-pay losses, like the humiliation, frustration and upset that this discrimination caused. However, it is hard to put a price tag on that. Finally, you need to factor in the cost to pursue a claim. If you hire a lawyer, expect the lawyer to spend $50,000 or more in lawyer time to get your case to a jury. In addition, your case will have $5,000 to $10,000 in deposition and other costs. You could avoid those costs by filing with the EEOC or the Ohio counterpart, the Ohio Civil Rights Commission, but you get what you pay for. The EEOC is currently closed due to the shutdown, and even when open it does not often advance the cases filed with it beyond issuing a right to sue.
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Contact & Map
4700 Rockside Rd.
Suite 530
Independence, OH 44131
Telephone: (216) 382-2500
3560 West Market Street
Suite 305-C
Akron, OH 44333
Telephone: (330) 665-5745