Biography

Your culture defines your business, and Tawny prides herself on helping clients comply with the law while simultaneously creating an amazing place to work.

She centers her practice on the understanding that the employment landscape is ever-changing and organizations do not have the time or resources to keep abreast of all these changes—from medical (and recreational) marijuana's effect on drug testing to the effect of social networking in the workplace, including the effect of the use of mobile devices on wage and hour issues. In this evolving landscape, Tawny recognizes that for companies to remain profitable and successful they must be proactive, not merely reactive, to these issues.

As many of these issues are swiftly evolving, Tawny prides herself on keeping current on these developments in the workplace and is skilled at crafting cost-effective solutions for adapting to them. She sensibly recognizes that one-size representation does not fit all, and focuses her practice on providing creative, cost-effective, and individualized labor and employment counseling and representation to clients while maintaining the culture that they have worked so hard to construct.

Tawny has represented diverse clients in a broad range of industries, from small family-owned businesses and non-profits to Fortune 100 companies across the country. In each situation, she recognizes that each company's culture and employment needs are distinct and crafts her practice to provide solutions that take these individualized needs and cultures into account. She frequently advises clients and defends them in court and before administrative bodies throughout the Northeast with issues including:

  • Wage and hour
  • Whistleblowing
  • Harassment/discrimination/retaliation (FMLA, ADA, FCA, FLSA, OSHA, USERRA, GINA, and ADEA)
  • Unemployment compensation
  • Employment agreements (including breach of separation agreements and restrictive covenant agreements, such as non-competes and non-solicitation)
  • Drug testing
  • Supervisor liability
  • Social media and technology in the workplace

Tawny's experience working with judges across the country at the trial and appellate levels provides her with a unique level of insight as to the ins and outs of state and federal litigation. Outside the adversarial setting, she counsels clients on best practices to minimize potential litigation with current and former employees including preparing separation agreements and drafting and revising policy handbooks.

Tawny serves as editor of Verrill's Employment & Labor Group blog, Taking Care of HR Business, and regularly presents to employers, human resources professionals, and peers on trending issues, best practices, and industry-specific concerns. Tawny created the HR Law 101 Series to provide individuals who are new to human resources with guidance on best practices regarding issues that frequently develop.

She also co-chairs the firm's Food & Beverage Group. Using the same mindset—that one size does not fit all—she enjoys helping small and large companies in the food and beverage community stay in compliance with state and federal regulations while simultaneously maintaining a culture that works for the organization. She represents retail and manufacturers that produce wine, beer, ice cream, and other specialties, as well as restaurants and bars throughout the Northeast.

Outside the office, Tawny enjoys reading fiction; exploring art museums and the Maine coast; experiencing Portland's myriad drinking, dining, and cultural options; traveling; and spending time with her daughter.

Services/Industries

Education

  • Pace University School of Law  (J.D., magna cum laude)
  • Thomas College  (B.S., summa cum laude)

Public Service

  • Board of Directors, Greater Portland Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB)
  • Steering Committee, Portland Museum of Art Contemporaries
  • Membership & Programming Committee, United Way Greater Portland Brick and Beam Society

Bar Admissions

  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • New Hampshire
  • Vermont
  • Iowa

Memberships

  • Board Member, Manufacturers Association of Maine

Honors

  • Received Katahdin Counsel Recognition for pro bono efforts (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)
  • Selected by peers for inclusion in New England Super Lawyers© under Employment & Labor

To learn more about third-party ratings and rankings, and the selection processes used for inclusion, click here.

Clerkships

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, Hon. Thomas I. Vanaskie
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Hon. Thomas I. Vanaskie
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court – Northern District of Iowa, Hon. Thad J. Collins
  • Iowa Judicial Branch, District Court

Court and Other Admissions

  • U.S. District Court for the District of New Hampshire
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maine
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court – District of New Hampshire
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit

Firm Highlights

Matter

Discrimination Defense

We successfully defended a large aviation ground handling service company against claims of violation of the ADA and the FMLA—garnering summary judgment in their favor.

Publication/Podcast

Return to Work Plan Outline

Your return to work plan is going to be dependent on your industry, your work culture, whether you completely shut down or decreased operations during the pandemic, and the design of your workplace. At...

Publication/Podcast

Webinar Materials: Legal Developments Every Hospital Should Know During the COVID-19 Pandemic

On May 18, Verrill attorneys Tawny Alvarez and Kate Healy presented "Legal Developments Every Hospital Should Know During the COVID-19 Pandemic" with MHA. This webinar provided Maine Hospital Association members with insights into the...

News

39 Verrill Attorneys Named 2019 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

Verrill Attorney Karen Frink Wolf Again Named One of New England’s Top 100 Attorneys and Top 50 Women Attorneys (December 11, 2019) – The 2019 edition of New England Super Lawyers and Rising Stars...

Matter

Discrimination Defense

We successfully defended a regional hotel chain against administrative claims of ADA and MHRA disability discrimination.

Blog

What will COVID-19 Liability Litigation Look Like for Consumer Facing Businesses?

The short answer is, no one knows right now because the issues arising from COVID-19 are extraordinarily rare and distinguishable from more typical claims against retail, restaurants, and similar consumer facing businesses. For example...

Blog

BABLO Issues Guidance on Reopening

Blog

Hand Sanitizer Relief for Distilled Spirits Extension

Event

Central Maine Human Resources Association Chapter Meeting: Flexible Work Options

Employment and labor attorney Tawny Alvarez will be presenting at the Central Maine Human Resources Association Chapter Meeting. This month's chapter meeting will focus on flexible work options. Tawny will discuss how policy impacts...

News

Tech traps for companies: What employers need to know

New technologies continue to invade the workplace, from biometrics to artificial intelligence. With the benefits come legal concerns for employers. In the latest issue of Mainebiz , employment and labor attorneys Tawny Alvarez and...