Lani Durio is an associate in the firm’s Houston office, where she focuses her practice on labor & employment law. Selected as a 2019 Top Lawyer in Labor & Employment by Houstonia Magazine and a 2020 “Rising Star” by Texas Super Lawyers, Lani has experience representing employers in state and federal court on matters relating to the enforcement of non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information, wage and hour disputes, and claims of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. Lani also has experience advising and assisting clients on issues arising in the employment life cycle, including drafting and revising employment contracts, restrictive covenant agreements, employee handbooks and policies, and counseling employers on leave issues, disciplinary issues, and separations.
Lani is an award-winning brief writer and national champion advocate, who participated in South Texas College of Law’s varsity advocacy program in law school. Over the course of her six total competitions, Lani received a Best Overall Speaker award and five Best Appellate Brief awards. Two years in a row, in 2017 and again in 2018, the American Society of Legal Writers selected one of Lani’s appellate briefs as the second best moot court brief in the country.
Prior to law school, Lani attended Clarkson University in upstate, New York, where she was a member, two-year captain, and two-time All-American on Clarkson’s volleyball team.
- Drafted and responded to pleadings and written discovery in state and federal court for claims involving discrimination, harassment, retaliation, violations of restrictive covenants, misappropriation of trade secrets and confidential information, wrongful termination, breach of employment agreements, breach of fiduciary duties, and other business-related torts
- Represented international waste management company in lawsuit involving claims of sex, race, and national origin discrimination
- Defended numerous national oil and gas service companies in class and collective actions involving allegations of unpaid overtime under state and federal law
- Obtained dismissal of charges of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation filed with the EEOC or comparable state or local agencies
- Obtained judgment against former employee for breach of tuition reimbursement agreement on behalf of national oil and gas services company
- Obtained temporary injunctive relief for clients in various industries in matters involving claims of trade secret misappropriation and violations of restrictive covenants
Advice and Counsel:
- Prepared, and provided advice and counsel regarding the enforceability of, restrictive covenants under Texas and other state’s laws
- Advised clients on proper pay practices and employee classification under the Fair Labor Standards Act and state law equivalent statutes
- Advised clients regarding the interactive process and employee requests for reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act, as well as leave issues arising under the Family Medical Leave Act
- Counseled employers on matters arising under the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate provisions
- Drafted specific policies and full employment handbooks for local, national, and global companies across various industries
- Drafted separation and release agreements in compliance with the OWBPA for employers in various industries
Professional Affiliations and Recognitions
- Named, Texas Rising Star by Super Lawyers (2020)
- Recognized by Houstonia Magazine, Top Lawyers 2019 – Labor and Employment
- SCRIBES Award Recipient, American Society of Legal Writers (2017, 2018)
- Member, State Bar of Texas, Labor and Employment Section
- Member, Houston Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section
- Adjunct Professor, Moot Court, South Texas College of Law
- FLOCK, Houston Zoo Young Professionals