"Very smart from a strategic standpoint."Chambers USA
"Her years of experience ensure that clients are confident in asking her to negotiate on their behalf."
Marcia Goodman primarily represents global employers on a wide range of US and cross-border employment law matters. In addition, she co-leads the firm’s Japan Client Initiative, a program aimed at strengthening and expanding Mayer Brown’s ability to serve Japanese clients.
She defends employers in federal class claims of race, age, sex, disability, national origin discrimination under EEO laws (e.g., reductions in force, promotions, sexual harassment, discriminatory terms, and conditions of employment) and in pattern and practice discrimination claims by the EEOC, as well as defending employee benefit plans and employers in ERISA class actions. Marcia also defends employers in litigation involving individual claims, such as a wide variety of EEO actions (race, age, national origin, sex, disability), Section 301 actions and Duty of Fair Representation Actions under collective bargaining agreements, Whistleblower claims under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, federal and state court actions involving disputes over employment contracts, defamation, fraud, tortious interference with employment or business opportunity, FMLA actions, wage and hour issues, independent contractor/employee status, post-employment competition, and misappropriation of trade secrets. She defends employee benefit plans and employers against challenges to plan interpretation of medical plans, the application of severance pay plans, the formula for calculating benefits and payment terms under defined benefit plans, retiree medical and other benefit changes, deferred compensation plan interpretation and changes, alleged fiduciary breaches in investments and use of plan assets, characterization of alleged plan assets, and independent contractor/employee status challenges.
In addition to her litigation experience, Marcia has significant experience with administrative proceedings. She represents employers before the EEOC and state human rights agencies (administrative charges and hearings), the National Labor Relations Board (unfair labor practice claims, unit determinations, election proceedings) and the Department of Labor (Veterans Rights, Whistleblower actions under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act). Her mediation and arbitration experience encompasses issues such as utilizing mediation effectively in the context of class action litigation resolution, representing employers in employment contract dispute arbitrations and private mediations, court and agency-sponsored formal mediation programs, and labor arbitrations under collective bargaining agreements.
Marcia’s trial work includes temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction work, bench trials and jury trials. Her appellate work includes arguing cases before the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, the Illinois Appellate Court and the Illinois Supreme Court. She has also filed a writ of certiorari with the United States Supreme Court.
In addition to her trial, appellate, administrative, and alternate dispute resolution experience, Marcia provides transactional services and advises clients on a wide range of employment matters, including terms of employment, policies and practices, executive investigations, employment terminations, diversity, collective labor issues, employment benefits, covenants not to compete and trade secrets, business transactions, and independent contractor and related employee issues.
Marcia also advises foreign-owned companies on employee issues, national origin and diversity issues, employment status of seconded or jointly employed employees, and manager training regarding US employment sensitivities.
Marcia studied law at Tokyo University and worked in Japan. She speaks and reads Japanese comfortably.
Marcia has been recognized as a leading employment lawyer by Chambers USA from 2008-2022, a key contact in Chambers Global in 2015 and one of the Best Lawyers in America from 2010-2021. Since 2018, she has also been recognized as one of Benchmark Litigation’s Labor and Employment Stars and noted as a key lawyer by Legal 500 US. In Chambers USA 2021, clients note “she is a really strong labor and employment attorney. She is terrific-super technical and a pleasure to work with.” In Chambers USA 2020, she is described by sources as “responsive, thoughtful, practical and considerate.” Chambers USA 2017 sources also acknowledged Marcia as an “excellent litigator” and highlighted her strengths in discrimination and harassment cases. Sources reserve particular praise for her “good judgment” and “very sophisticated level of expertise.” Chambers USA also acknowledged Marcia as a “well-respected” lawyer and a “key partner, [who] has a well-rounded employment practice and is "‘very smart from a strategic standpoint.’"
Areas of Focus
- Employee Benefits
- Executive Compensation
- Employment Litigation & Counseling
- Cybersecurity & Data Privacy
- Litigation & Dispute Resolution
- Employment & Benefits
- Consumer & Employment Arbitration
- Internal Investigations
- Joint Ventures & Strategic Alliances
- Enterprise Risk & Crisis Management
- Special Situations
- Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Jurisdictions Expanding Leave for Bereavement and Pregnancy-Related LossesEmployee Benefit Plan Review
Tokyo University, (Japanese Ministry of Education Fellowship in Law)
Harvard Law School, JD
University of Michigan, MA, Japanese Studies
Stanford Center for Japanese Language Studies, Tokyo
University of Michigan, AB
with high honors
- District of Columbia
- US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
- Trial Bar of the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
- US District Court for the Central District of Illinois
- US District Court for the Western District of Michigan
- US District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin
- US District Court for the District of Colorado
- US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
- US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
- US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
- Executive Committee, Director of the Japan America Society of Chicago
- Adjunct faculty in deposition training program
- American Bar Association, Section on Labor and Employment Relations, Section on Litigation, Section on International Law
- Lincoln Park Juniors Rowing Club (“Changing the Face of Junior Rowing”)