Melissa is a member of Butler Snow’s Labor and Employment group, with experience in a wide range of industries.  Melissa regularly counsels clients on compliance issues and represents employers before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the South Carolina Human Affairs Commission, and in both state and federal court against lawsuits arising under Title VII, ADA, ADEA, FMLA, and the FLSA.

Biography – View PDF Bio

Associations

Bar Admissions

  • South Carolina, 2009
  • U.S. District Courts
    • South Carolina: District of South Carolina
  • U.S. Court of Appeals
    • 4th Circuit

Civic Involvement

  • The Charleston Forum
    • Board of Directors, 2020-Present
  • Florence Crittenton Programs of South Carolina
    • Board of Directors, 2013-2019

Distinctions

  • Charleston Regional Business Journal, Forty Under 40, 2020
  • Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Charleston, Class of 2019
  • South Carolina Super Lawyers®
    • Rising Star: Employment Litigation, 2016-2019
  • Best Lawyers in America®
    • Ones to Watch, Labor and Employment Law – Management, 2021-2022

Education & Honors

  • Charleston School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 2009
    • Charleston Law Review, Senior Articles Editor
    • Honor Council, Chair
    • Michelle Robbins Memorial Award
    • CALI Excellence for the Future Awards: Federal Courts and Supreme Court Seminar
  • Wofford College, B.A., magna cum laude, 2006
  • Clerkship, ​Judge Daniel F. Pieper, ​South Carolina Court of Appeals

Experience

  • Regularly counsels employers on personnel issues including hiring, firing, compensation, and compliance with state and federal employment laws.
  • Reviews and advises employers concerning employee handbooks and policies, severance agreements, non-disclosure agreements, non-solicitation agreements, and non-compete agreements.  
  • Defends lawsuits involving employment discrimination, harassment, non-compete, and wage and hours claims in South Carolina and Federal courts.
  • Defends class and collective actions involving wage and hour claims arising under Fair Labor Standards Act and South Carolina Payment of Wages Act. 
  • Conducts employee training on anti-discrimination and anti-harassment policies.  
  • Negotiated and tried numerous cases to verdict, representing clients in a wide range of industries.
  • Argued before the state and federal courts, including the South Carolina Supreme Court and the South Carolina Court of Appeals.  
  • Regularly defends timeshare companies in cases arising under state law.  
  • Obtained defense award, including award of counterclaim, in timeshare defense arbitration.

Papers, Presentations, & Publications

  • ​Co-Author, "Lessons and Recommendations from the COVID-19 Era," ACC South Carolina, 2nd Quarter Newsletter, June 30, 2021.
  • Quoted, "Employment Hires You May Have Missed In The 1st Quarter," Law360 Employment Authority, March 31, 2021.
  • Presenter, “Campaigning and the Workplace,” Employment Law Briefing, Charleston, SC, October 29, 2020. 
  • Panelist, “Reopening without Reservation,” SC Restaurant & Lodging Association, May 6, 2020.
  • Presenter, “Privacy Issues in the Workplace During COVID-19,” Employment Law Certificate Series Webinar, April 8, 2020.
  • Presenter, “An Employer’s Guide to Emergency Leave and Unemployment,” Lowcountry Local First, April 2, 2020.
  • Presenter, “Managing Your Workforce During the Pandemic,” Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, March 31, 2020.
  • Presenter, “Managing Your Workforce during COVID-19,” Palmetto Society of Human Resource and Management, March 27, 2020.
  • Presenter, “Practical Points for Bringing and Defending a Wage and Hour Lawsuit,” South Carolina Bar Convention, Employment Labor Seminar, January 24, 2020.
  • More...