Freeman, Freeman & Smiley LLP

Professional Details

Teresa R. Tracy, Partner

Teresa "Terri" R. Tracy represents management in all areas of labor and employment law and litigation. Specializations include wrongful termination, discrimination, wage and hour, class action, union organizing campaigns, grievances and arbitrations, and collective bargaining. She also provides preventive services, including comprehensive counseling and training. 

Ms. Tracy’s clients represent a broad range of industries and range from entrepreneurs and medium-sized companies to major national and international corporations. She stresses a preventive approach designed to allow management as much latitude as possible in employee relations, while avoiding unnecessary litigation. 

Ms. Tracy has litigated before state and federal courts throughout the country, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, numerous state departments of civil rights, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, the National Labor Relations Board, arbitrators, the Wage and Hour Division of the Department of Labor, Employment Development Department audits, and State Labor Commissioner proceedings. 

The author of a chapter in Advising California Employers and Employees, Ms. Tracy also regularly wrote the column on employment discrimination law for The California Labor and Employment Law Quarterly. She has been quoted in Forbes, FinancialWeek, Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg News, Workforce Management, Employment Law360, Los Angeles Business Journal, Variety Magazine, Contra Costa Times, and American Medical News, among others. 

Ms. Tracy has been named fifteen times to the Southern California Super Lawyers list (2004-2015, 2017-2019) in the area of labor and employment. She was recognized on its “Top 50: 2011 Women Southern California Super Lawyers” list by Super Lawyers Magazine. An active member of the community, she is on the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles Urban League and a longstanding member since 1985.

Professional & Community Involvement

  • American Bar Association
  • California State Bar Association
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
  • National Association of Professional Women
  • Strafford | Employment & ERISA Teleconference Advisory Board Member
  • Los Angeles Urban League | Board of Directors Executive Committee 

Presentations & Publications

  • Teresa R. Tracy Featured on Strafford Webinar Panel About Recent NLRB Decision on Independent Contractor Classification | April 2019
  • Teresa R. Tracy was a Featured Panelist on Webinar on Preparing for ICE Workplace Investigations | November 2018
  • Teresa R. Tracy participated in a Stafford webinar on the NLRB's guidance on handbooks. | September 2018
  • Webinar | "Structuring Employee Handbooks: Arbitration Provisions, Social Media Policies, Whistleblower Protections and More" | Strafford | February 2018
  • Webinar | Employment Law Issues After a Natural Disaster or Other Crisis: Compensation, Leave, Workplace Safety and More | November 2017
  • Webinar | EEO Internal Investigations: Guidance for Employment Counsel | Strafford | September 2017
  • Webinar | EEOC Onsite Investigations: Employer Best Practices for Preparing for and Cooperating With Investigators | Strafford | February 2017
  • Webinar | Employee Handbooks Under Heightened Scrutiny: Guidance for Employment Counsel Structuring Handbook Provisions | November 2016
  • "New Sexual Harassment Regulations" | Greater Los Angeles Association of Legal Administrators | July 2016
  • Webinar | "NLRB Issues for Unionized and Non-Unionized Employers" | Law Firm Alliance | March 2016
  • Webinar | "Employees' New Tactic to Challenge Arbitration Agreements: A Trip to the NLRB" | Strafford | December 2015
  • Webinar | "Drafting Employee Handbooks: Minimizing Exposure Risks" | Strafford | November 2015
  • "Defending Against Damages in Wage and Hour Litigation: Preventive and Trial Techniques" | Strafford | November 2014
  • "Wage & Hour Compliance Under California's Employee-Friendly Framework and New Legislation" | Strafford | January 2014
  • "California's New Procedure for Investigating and Litigating Employment Discrimination Claims" | Strafford | December 2013
  • "When the EEOC Comes Knocking: Anticipating and Responding to Discrimination and Retaliation Investigations" | Strafford | July 2011
  • "The New ADA Regulations: Managing Legal Exposure" | Celesq® AttorneysEd Center in partnership West LegalEdcenter | June 2011
  • "Employee Handbooks: Keys to Drafting Effective Policies for Your Clients" | National Constitution Center | March 2011
  • “Cell Phone, BlackBerry and Social Media Policies that Minimize Employer Liability” | National Constitution Center | January 2010
  • “EEOC Investigations on the Rise: Proactive Strategies to Respond to Discrimination Investigations and Prevail in Claims” | Strafford | January 2010
  • "Effective Employee Handbooks: Drafting Policies That Work" | Progressive Business Audio Conferences | November 2009
  • "California Wage and Hour Issues Affecting Residential Cleaning Franchisees" | October 2009
  • “E-mail, Facebook & Blogging: Employee Internet Policies You Need Now” | Progressive Business Audio Conferences | September 2009
  • "Drafting and Enforcing Dress Code Policies: What's Working, What's Not" | Progressive Business Audio Conferences | August 2009
  • "Ricci v. DeStefano: Balancing Title VII Disparate Treatment and Disparate Impact" | Strafford | July 2009
  • "Bulletproof Your Employee Handbook" | Progressive Business Audio Conferences | June 2009
  • "EEOC Investigations: Effective Employer Strategies" | Strafford | April 2009
  • "2009 Labor and Employment Law Update" | Paramount Educational Seminars | April 2009
  • "Employee Free Choice Act: Legal Strategies for Employers Facing Broader Unionizing Rights" | Strafford | April 2009
  • "California Employment Law Update 2009: New Changes You Need to Know" | National Constitution Center | April 2009
  • "The New Employer COBRA Obligations" | Professionals in Human Resources Association, District 11 | March 2009
  • "The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act" | Strafford | February 2009
  • "The Employee Free Choice Act" | Professionals in Human Resources Association | January 2009
  • "Civil Rights Litigation Update" | National Business Institute | July 2008
  • "Managing DOL Investigations and Avoiding Litigation" | Strafford | September 2007
  • "Defending Collective and Class Claims: Class Certification, Trial and Settlement Strategies" | Strafford | September 2007
  • "Managing DOL Investigations and Avoiding Litigation" | Strafford | September 2007
  • "Latest Developments in Employment Law: What's In It For In-House Counsel?" | Association of Corporate Counsel America Southern California Chapter | January 2007
  • "Latest Developments in Employment Law: What's In It For In-House Counsel?" | Association of Corporate Counsel America Southern California Chapter | January 2007
  • "Wage and Hour Collective and Class Claims: Strategies for Defending Claims and Limiting Damages" | Strafford | March 2006
  • "Electronic Discovery Do's and Don'ts" | Association of Corporate Counsel America Southern California Chapter | January 2006
  • "Workplace Romance Poses New Legal Risk for Employers" | Strafford | November 2005
  • "FMLA in Flux" | Strafford | October 2005
  • "Wage and Hour Collective and Class Claims: Changing State of the Law and Best Practices for Minimizing Claims" | Strafford | September 2005
  • "Non-Compete Agreements Under Fire: Crafting Contracts to Protect Your Assets" | Strafford | August 2005
  • "Disparate Impact Under the ADEA: Understanding the Practical Effect of Smith v. City of Jackson, Mississippi" | Strafford | July 2005
  • "10th Annual Litigators Forum" | Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles | May 2005
  • "The Elimination of Bias in the Legal Department" | Association of Corporate Counsel America Southern California Chapter | January 2005
  • "Practical Applications of Employment Law" | Sterling Education Services | April 2004
  • "How Medical Information Fares in Judicial Proceedings" | Los Angeles County Bar Association, Labor & Employment Law Section | February 2004
  • "Navigating the Maze: Various Leaves" | Professionals in Human Resources Association Annual Conference | January 2003
  • "Fundamentals of Employment Law Practice" | The State Bar of California | January 2001
  • "What Do You Mean This Person Is My Employee??" | Society for Human Resource Management, 52nd Annual Conference & Exposition | June 2000
  • "Avoiding Employer Liability: Things You Should Know and Do" | Women Lawyers Association of Los Angeles and National Association of Women Business Owners, Los Angeles Chapter | November 1999
  • "Employment Law for Entrepreneurs" | UCLA MBA Program

Media Coverage

  • Teresa R. Tracy Shares Opinion with Law360 on the High Court's Ruling on EEOC Attorney's Fees | May 2016
  • Teresa R. Tracy Quoted in Law360 Regarding the Department of Labor's Worker Misclassification Guidance | July 2015
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in Los Angeles Times article, “Hiring Part-Time Workers Can Have Downsides Too" | October 2010
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in California Executive article, "Legislation Loosens Up Alternative Work Week Schedule Rules" | April 2009
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in Human Resource Executive article, "Censoring HR" | December 2008
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in California Executive article, "Family Responsibility Discrimination: A Primer" | September 2008
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in California Executive article, "U.S. Supreme Court Weighs In On Labor Arbitration" | July 2008
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in California Executive article, "Appellate Case Illustrates Pressure to Seize Business Owners' Assets" | April 2008
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in Workforce Management article, "Top 10 Legal Decisions of 2007 Affecting Employment Law in 2008 and Beyond" | December 2007
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in Small Business Resource Center article, "Five Employment Law Basics" | November 2007
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in FinancialWeek article, "World Bank Drama Highlights Risk to Employers" | May 2007
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in Employment Law360 Newsletter, "Lawyers Up in Arms Over Landmark Wage Ruling" | April 2007
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in American Medical News article, "Handling the Toxic Employee: How to Avoid - or Dilute - the Poison" | July 2006
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in Bloomberg News article, "Google Reviewing Microsoft Offer to Settle Lawsuit" | September 2005
  • Teresa Tracy quoted in Contra Costa Times article, "No Strike: BART, Unions Reach Deal for Four-Year Contract" | July 2005


  • "The Impact of 2008 Supreme Court Employment Law Cases: Leading Lawyers Analyze Key Cases and Trends (Inside the Minds) | Aspatore Books | January 2009
  • California Continuing Education of the Bar’s “Discrimination and Harassment," Advising California Employers and Employees (1st edition) | 2003 – Present