Joanna R. Varon

Duane Morris LLP
1540 Broadway
New York, NY 10036-4086

Phone: +1 212 692 1057
Fax: +1 212 208 6831

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Joanna R. Varon


Joanna R. (Jodi) Varon practices in the areas of employment law, labor relations and litigation. Ms. Varon advises employers on a variety of employment laws governing the workplace, including in the areas of employment discrimination (Title VII, ADA, ADEA), wage and hour (FLSA), family, medical and military leave (FMLA, USERRA), background checks (FCRA), plant closings/reductions in force (WARN) and in connection with recruitment, performance management and termination. Ms. Varon regularly reviews and prepares personnel policies, employee handbooks, employment contracts and separation agreements. She also develops non-compete, non-solicitation and confidentiality agreements and analyzes enforcement under various state laws. Ms. Varon represents clients in federal and state court litigation and before administrative agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, New York Division of Human Rights, Occupational Safety and Health Administration Board and the Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board. She trains both executives and employees on preventing workplace harassment.

Ms. Varon is a 2003 graduate of the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, where she was senior articles editor of the Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal, and a graduate, with high honors, of Rutgers University.

Areas of Practice

  • Employment Counseling and Advice
  • Labor Law and Relations
  • Employment Litigation
  • Restrictive Covenants

Representative Matters

  • Obtained dismissal of discrimination and retaliation claims filed with the New York State Division of Human Rights and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
  • Obtained temporary restraining order against former employee, prohibiting him from soliciting customers and competing in violation of his restrictive covenants.
  • Continuing representation of over 150 clients assessed by the New York Workers' Compensation Board following the demise of various self-insured workers’ compensation trusts.
  • Supervised and conducted internal investigations for management.
  • Counseled clients regarding family and medical leaves and accommodations of qualified employees with disabilities, including legal obligations and risk assessment, and drafted correspondence.
  • Negotiated separation agreements to successfully resolve disputes and avoid litigation.
  • Conducted training of executives and employees in the areas of workplace harassment prevention and wage and hour pitfalls.
  • Counseled clients in connection with reductions in force, including risk assessment and preparation of separation agreements.
  • Defended employment discrimination, breach of contract and wage and hour cases in federal and state courts.
  • Counseled clients on wage and hour compliance and proper classification of employees under the FLSA and state law.
  • Counseled clients on labor and employment issues in connection with acquisitions and other corporate deals.
  • Prevailed in union election campaign for national parking service provider.
  • Represented employers in unfair labor practice proceedings before the NLRB.


  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York


  • Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University, J.D., 2003
    - Senior Articles Editor, Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal
  • Rutgers College, B.A., with high honors, 1998


  • Duane Morris LLP
    - Partner, 2013-present
    - Associate, 2007-2012
  • Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP
    - Associate, 2003-2007

Professional Activities

  • New York State Bar Association
  • Cardozo Women's Committee

Honors and Awards

  • Named as a Rising Star in Employment & Labor by New York Metro Super Lawyers Magazine, 2013

Selected Publications

Selected Speaking Engagements

  • Lecturer, "Developments in Workplace Law and Practice," Duane Morris Seminar, May 2014
  • Speaker, "Interrelationship Between Federal, State and Local Employment Statutes and Agency Regulations and Guidance," HR/NY Managers' Forum (SHRM Affiliate), 2013
  • Speaker, "Helping the Pro Se Litigant Mediate Employment Disputes," New York State Bar Association, New York City, January 18, 2013
  • Speaker, "New York Employment Law For The Construction, Real Estate and Building Services Industries," Duane Morris Labor and Employment Law Breakfast Briefing, February 14, 2013
  • Speaker, "Wage and Hour Tsunamis," Duane Morris Institute, November 2, 2011
  • Lecturer, "The What, Where, When and Why of the NLRB's Proposed Rules Reforming R-Case Procedures," New York State Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section Annual Meeting, Saratoga, New York, September 2011
  • Lecturer, "Developments in Workplace Law and Practice," Duane Morris Seminar, May 2010
  • Lecturer, "Developments in Workplace Law and Practice," Duane Morris Seminar, May 2009