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Caroline / Managing Partner
Caroline Harrison is a founding Partner of Dowell Pham Harrison LLP. As an attorney Board Certified in Labor and Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, she represents employers in disputes with former employees, and guides them through the sometimes confusing arena of employment law. Her practice focuses on employment litigation and counseling.
Caroline assists employers in a variety of areas, including anti-discrimination and retaliation laws, drafting and enforcing covenants not to compete and non- solicitation agreements, and protection of trade secrets. She advises employers on the Family and Medical Leave Act, (FMLA), Unemployment Compensation appeals, handling complex investigations into sensitive employment issues, Wage and Hour issues, and classification of employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act, (FLSA). She provides counseling on complex issues including discipline, termination, harassment, investigations, effective employment practices, litigation avoidance and accommodation of disabilities, as well as training human resource professionals, managers, and supervisors in all areas of employment law. Caroline is also the Author of Employment in Texas: A Guide to Employment Laws, Regulations, and Practices published annually by LexisNexis.
Principal practice area
- Texas Wesleyan University School of Law (J.D., cum laude, 2004)
- Extern to Honorable Terry Means, Northern District of Texas, Fort Worth Division 2003-2004
- Law Review (2002-2004) Article Editor (2003-2004)
- The University of Texas at Arlington (B.A., summa cum laude, 2001)
- Obtained dismissal for Tarrant County College District based on lack of jurisdiction. Childs v. Tarrant County College District, No. 67-301745-18 (67th Dist. Ct. Tarrant County, Tex. March 13, 2019).
- Obtained summary judgment for food distributor in case involving allegations of race and gender discrimination and retaliation in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas. McIntire v. Ben E. Keith Company, No. 4:16-CV-1134-A, 2017 WL 4653447, (N.D. Tex. Oct. 17, 2017). On appeal the case was dismissed for want of prosecution.
- Defended Fortune 500 aerospace company against workers’ compensation retaliation suit brought by a former employee in the 342nd District Court, Tarrant County. Obtained a complete defense verdict after a one week trial.
- Obtained summary judgment for one of Tarrant County’s largest non-profit providers of early childhood education in a case involving allegations of retaliation under the FMLA, the Rehab Act, and the Texas Family Code. The case was appealed to the 5th Circuit and was upheld on appeal. Perkins v. Child Care Associates, 751 Fed.Appx. 469 (5th Cir. 2018).
- Defended Fortune 500 aerospace company in a disability discrimination suit brought by a former employee in the Northern District of Texas. Obtained summary judgment for client.
- Defended Fortune 500 aerospace company in a Sabine Pilot case brought by the former President of one if its subsidiary companies. After a 3 week jury trial, obtained a directed verdict for the client. Upheld on appeal. Prieto v. Bell Aerospace Services, Inc. et al, No. 02-11-00479-CV, 2013 WL5658146, (Tex. App.–Fort Worth, Oct. 17, 2013), pet. denied.
- Defended Fortune 500 aerospace company in an age discrimination and retaliation suit brought by a former employee in the Northern District of Texas. The case settled before trial.
- Defended Tarrant County’s largest non-profit provider of early childhood education in a case involving allegations of retaliation under the Texas Family Code. Obtained a unanimous defense verdict after less than two hours of jury deliberation.
- Represented a local school district in a wrongful termination appeal to the Texas Education Agency. The case settled while on appeal.
- Represented former Chief Product Development Officer of a healthcare technology company in a breach of contract case. The case settled before trial.
- Defended national healthcare billing company in a tortious interference with contract and theft of trade secrets case. Obtained voluntary dismissal of all claims against client.
- Defended local hospital in two suits filed by former employees who were injured while at work. One case settled prior to trial and we obtained summary judgment for the client in the other.
- Represented local non-profit company in unemployment benefits appeal brought by former employee. Obtained summary judgment for client.
- Defended CPA in non-compete suit brought by former employer. Obtained summary judgment for client, which was affirmed on appeal. Pickle v. Johnson, No. 02-10-0036-CV, 2011 WL 4345233, (Tex. App.—Fort Worth, Sept. 15, 2011, no pet).
Bar admissions and certifications
- Board Certified in Labor & Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization
- Licensed to practice in Texas, 2004
- Admitted to U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas
- Admitted to U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
- Admitted to U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas
- Admitted to U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas
- Admitted to U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma
- State Bar of Texas
- College of the State Bar of Texas
Professional And Community
- Tarrant County Women In the Law Luncheon Chair 2019
- Tech Fort Worth Mentor 2019
- Texas Minority Council Program Steering Committee (2011-2018), Co-Chair (2015-2016)
- Recognized as a “Super Lawyer” by Super Lawyers Magazine, a Thomson Reuters service, 2016-2019
- Recognized as a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers Magazine, a Thomson Reuters service, (2009-2015)
- American Heart Association Executive Leadership Team 2019 Tarrant County Heart Ball 2019
- Tarrant County Bar Association, (Director 2008; 2009-2010)
- Tarrant County Women Attorney Section, Treasurer (2019-2020)
- Grapevine Elementary School Principle’s Campus Excellence Committee 2015-2017
- Tarrant County Young Lawyers Association, (President 2008; Board of Directors, 2005-2008)
- Eldon B. Mahon Inn of Court (Barrister 2010-2013; Secretary, 2011-2012)
- Former Trustee, Speedway Children’s Charities, Texas Chapter
- Northwest Metroport Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, (2013-2014); Chair Women in Business Division (2014-2015)
Publications and presentations
- Employment in Texas: A Guide to Employment Laws, Regulations, and Practices, Published by LexisNexis, 2018 Edition
- Avoiding “I’ll be Back” Employment Issues, National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, May 2019
- Management Training: Interplay between the ADA and the FMLA, Tarrant County College, November 2018
- How to Prepare a Witness for Trial, UTA Pre-Law Class, October 2018
- #Me Too, Texas Minority Counsel Program, October 2018
- Keeping it Legal, Child Care Associates Leadership Academy, August 2018
- Why is Being a Rainmaker so Important, Texas Minority Counsel Program, November 2017
- Employment Law for Small Businesses, This Week in Weddings Podcast, October 2017
- Starting & Running a Law Firm, Tarrant County Young Lawyers’ Association, October 2017
- On the Hook: Understanding the Joint Employer Relationship & Protecting Against Post Release Claims by Employees, Tarrant County Bar Association Corporate Counsel Section, September 2017
- Pitfalls in Hiring Temporary Workers, Texas Total Rewards Conference, September 2017
- How you Can Get Sued Still After Getting a Release from your Ex-Employee, Chain Restaurant Total Rewards Conference, July 2017
- How Your Performance Management System Impacts the Company, North Texas Compensation, July 2017 & October 2017
- Social Media Laws for Employers, Business Assistance Council, May 2017
- Changes to the FLSA White Collar Exemption, Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce Job Links, October 2016
- The Importance of Client Intake Screening, Tarrant County Bar Association Transition to Practice Luncheon, September 2016
- Religious Discrimination after Abercrombie, The Imperative H.R. Conference, August 2016
- Ways to Avoid Common Pitfalls in Employment Law, United Way Executive Forum, October 2015
- The FLSA, Texas Advanced Paralegal Seminar, September 2015
- Overview of the FMLA, Tarrant County Bar Association, April 2015
- Legal Implications of Using Volunteers, DOVIA Tarrant County, November 2014 & July 2015
- Non-Competition and Non-Solicitation Agreements, Financial Executives International, Fort Worth Chapter, January 2014
- The Realities of Being an Employer in 2013 (advice on how to avoid being sued), Gus Bates EPL Seminar, November 2013
- The (over) Expansive Reach of the NLRA in the Private Sector, HR Southwest Conference, October, 2013
- Employment Law Conference, Northwest Metroport Chamber of Commerce, April 2013
- Top Misconceptions about Employee and Employer Rights; Plaid for Women, August 2013
- Top 5 Misconceptions Employers have about Employee Rights, Women’s Broadcast Network/Plaid Radio, July 2013
- 5 Part Serious “Women in the Workplace”, Broadcast Network/Plaid Radio, 2013/2014
- Hot Topics in Employment Law, North Texas Association of Medical Administrators, November 2012
- “Of Counsel” Attorneys: Employees or Independent Contractors; Fort worth Association of Legal Administrators, October 2012
- Creating & Maintaining a Harassment Free Environment, HR Southwest October 2012
- Non-Competition Agreements & Non-Solicitation Agreements, Independent Insurance Agents of Tarrant County, April 2012
- Top Five Things Every Non-Employment Attorney Should Know, Texas Wesleyan School of Law Alumni All-Star CLE, October 2011
- Hiring Do’s & Don’ts, Fort Worth Chamber Small Business Section, March 2011
- Being Prepared for the Practice of Law, Texas Wesleyan University School of Law, 2008
- Sexual Harassment, Fort Worth Chapter, Texas Society of CPA’s, 2004