Rachel M. Kurth

Senior Counsel
Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP

Rachel M. Kurth

Rachel M. Kurth

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Biography

Rachel M. Kurth practices in the areas of employment, executive compensation and employee benefits law. 

Ms. Kurth has experience drafting, reviewing and negotiating agreements on behalf of employers and executives, including employment, termination, consulting, retention, change-in-control, secondment, confidentiality and non-competition agreements, and releases of claims. She also has experience drafting and reviewing employee handbooks, compliance manuals, and other workplace policies and procedures. Ms. Kurth advises clients on compliance with federal, state and local laws related to:

  • wages and hours (including the Fair Labor Standards Act);
  • discrimination (including Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act); 
  • employee benefits (including the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act);
  • reductions in force (including the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act);
  • employee leave (including the Family and Medical Leave Act);
  • health and safety (including the Occupational Safety and Health Act);
  • immigration (including the Immigration Reform and Control Act);
  • background checks (including the Fair Credit Reporting Act);
  • employee rights (including the National Labor Relations Act); and
  • requirements imposed on federal contractors and subcontractors with respect to wages, benefits, equal employment opportunity, and affirmative action programs (including the Davis-Bacon Act, Executive Order 11246, Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act).

Ms. Kurth advises clients on employee discipline and discharge. She has experience conducting internal investigations into employee issues and providing workforce training. She has particular experience advising clients with respect to New York State new hire requirements and other wage and hour laws.

Ms. Kurth has represented clients before government agencies with respect to state workers’ compensation and disability insurance laws. She has represented clients in audits and investigations by state labor departments.

Ms. Kurth's practice involves reviewing and amending tax-qualified plans and summary plan descriptions for compliance with ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code. She also has experience preparing benefits-related filings with the Internal Revenue Service and Department of Labor.

Ms. Kurth has developed a particular niche advising employers of domestic workers, who have specific legal needs with respect to their household staff, particularly in light of certain recently-enacted federal, state, and local laws that provide additional legal protections to domestic workers. She also has extensive experience advising employers of domestic workers about their concerns regarding confidentiality and privacy with respect to the domestic workers and other individuals who work in their homes and around their families.  Ms. Kurth represents employers of domestic workers in all aspects of the employment relationship, including ensuring that appropriate confidentiality protections are in place at the pre-hire interview stage as well as during and after employment, aiding in compliance with the new hire process, providing legal advice during the employment relationship, and assisting with routine and delicate employee departures and terminations. Ms. Kurth regularly advises employers of domestic workers about offer letters, employment agreements, confidentiality agreements, background checks and drug tests, “new hire” paperwork such as tax and immigration forms, wage and hour laws, employee benefits, and separation and release agreements. Ms. Kurth also regularly drafts employer policies that apply to domestic workers, including policies governing paid time off, use of information technology, use of employer-provided vehicles, use of employer-provided credit cards, and other employment policies and procedures.


Professional experience

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  • JD, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif,  Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University, 2008
    • Cardozo Scholar
    • Heyman Scholar, Samuel and Ronnie Heyman Center on Corporate Governance
    • Senior Notes Editor, Cardozo Arts and Entertainment Law Journal
  • BA, cum laude, University of Pennsylvania, 2005
  • New York State Bar
  • "A Breakfast Briefing:  What New York Employers Need to Know: From Start Up to Professional," New York, NY, November 8, 2018
  • "Unconscious bias in the workplace: Discrimination disguised in a subtle form," Webinar, October 16, 2018
  • "Hot Topics: Recent legislation in response to the #metoo and #timesup movements," Summer Networking Breakfast with the Greater New York Chamber of Commerce, New York, NY, June 28, 2018
  • "A Legal Perspective on Employee Management," Domestic Estate Management Association New York City Regional Management Conference, New York, NY, April 23, 2016
  • "Employee Management, A Legal Perspective," DEMA Live, April 13, 2016
  • "Employer Essentials for Start-Ups," Penn Club, New York, NY, November 18, 2015
  • "Employer Essentials for Start-Ups, New Businesses and Growing Companies," New York, NY, June 19, 2014
  • "Impact of Supreme Court Decision on Health Care Reform," New York, NY, July 13, 2012
  • "New Retirement Plan Fee Disclosure Requirements: What You Need to Know and Do Now," New York, NY, May 23, 2012
  • Member, National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL)
  • Member, NAWL Sponsorship Committee
  • Member, NAWL Mentorship Committee
  • Marketing Committee Chair, NAWL Annual Meeting Planning Committee, 2016
  • Firm representative, NAWL Challenge Club, 2015
  • Member, NAWL Women in Employment Law group
  • Cardozo Labor and Employment Law Alumni Group, Labor and Employment Practice Group Committee
  • Member, Domestic Estate Management Association (DEMA)
  • Member, DEMA Security Council
  • Member, Greater New York Chamber of Commerce