Steven Mitchell
Sack

The Employee’s Lawyer®

Welcome to The Law Offices of Steven Mitchell Sack

Enforcing the workplace rights of thousands of employees, executives and sales reps for more than 39 years.

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Drafting & Negotiating Employment Agreements for Executives

Long Island Employment Law

Long Island employment lawyer Steven Mitchell Sack understands the legal, business, and professional implications of entering and exiting employment, partnership, business, and buy-sell agreements. He has extensive experience negotiating and helping clients negotiate such agreements, as well as reducing exposure to breach of contract litigation when appropriate.

Specific areas of Sack’s experience include:

  • Drafting letters and employment agreements for executives, officers, managers, and employees
  • Crafting agreements for partners, independent contractors, consultants and commission salespeople
  • Creating severance, retention, and change-of-control agreements
  • Reviewing and advising clients on the merits of restrictive covenants, including trade secret, non-disclosure, non-competition, non-solicitation and confidentiality clauses
  • Executive restructuring in mergers and acquisitions
  • Negotiating severance packages for executives, officers and employees

Checklist of Key Negotiating Points to Cover During the Hiring Interview

The following checklist is divided into three main sections: The Job; Job Security; and Salary and Benefits. Where appropriate, detailed “strategies” have been inserted into the checklist for further information.


The Job

  1. Job description. (Understand the nature of the job being offered.)
  2. What is your title?
  3. What will be your job functions? Will you report to a superior? If so, who?
  4. When are you expected to begin working (start date)?
  5. What is your employment status?
    1. Are you considered a regular full-time employee eligible for all employer-provided fringe benefits (as opposed to a part-time or exempt employee paid on an hourly basis with limited fringe benefits)?
    2. Are you considered an employee or an independent contractor? (As an independent contractor, you may be required to pay all federal, state, and local withholding taxes, Social Security, and other taxes. However, there are certain advantages to being hired as an independent contractor which will be discussed later in this chapter.)
    3. Are you being hired as a consultant? If so, can you work for other companies, have outside work and sidelines, etc.? This, too, will be discussed later in the chapter.


Job Security

  1. Will you be given job security (as opposed to merely being “hired at will,” which gives the employer the right to fire you at any time with or without notice and with or without cause)?
  2. If so, what kind of job security is being offered?

STRATEGY 1: Your objective in negotiating for job security is to avoid being fired suddenly at the employer’s discretion.

The best job security to obtain is to be employed for a definite term—for example, two years. This means that the employer cannot fire you prior to the expiration of that term except for a compelling reason—that is, for cause. (Most employers are reluctant to hire people for a definite term because it reduces their ability to fire employees at any time.) Thus, always ask for a definite term when being hired. Use your discretion as to the amount of job security you request. Your request can range from six months to several years. Tell the employer you want an X-year contract; the employer will know what you mean.

STRATEGY 2: If the employer refuses to hire you for a definite term, ask for a guarantee that you cannot be fired except for cause or as long as you achieve certain goals (for example, a minimum sales quota if you are being hired as a salesperson). This request can give you needed protection without locking the employer into a time frame.

STRATEGY 3: If this request is refused, ask to be guaranteed a written warning within a definite period of time (for example, 30 days to cure alleged deficient performance) before being fired. This will protect you from a sudden firing, and some employers will accept this. Or you can ask for a written notice of termination (for example, 30 days before the contract will end) before the effective termination date so that you can plan ahead and look for other employment while still collecting a paycheck.

STRATEGY 4: If the employer refuses #3, request pay in lieu of notice in the event you are fired without warning; for example, ask to receive two weeks’ additional pay at your current salary level in the event you are fired suddenly. (This is in addition to severance pay, more fully discussed below.)

STRATEGY 5: Be sure you understand if you are being hired for a probationary period. Some employers establish a probationary period (for example, the first 90 days of employment) ranging from 30 to 120 days to evaluate an employee’s performance. If you are hired for a probationary period but are fired before the end of the period, you may be entitled to receive salary and other benefits until the end of the probationary period in certain situations.


Salary and Benefits

  1. What is your base salary, and when is it payable? Understand all deductions from your paycheck.
  2. When does the pay period start and end?
  3. If payday falls on a holiday, when are paychecks distributed?
  4. Is overtime offered? If so, at what rate? Is there a seniority basis for offering overtime (e.g., a policy that overtime is first offered to longtime workers)? Most states, in addition to federal law, require that overtime must be paid whenever a part-time or hourly employee works in excess of 40 hours per week. Special employees working in government contracting or subcontracting work may also be required to be paid overtime if they work more than eight hours on any given day. Discuss this if relevant.
  5. Will you be required to outlay expenses? If so, are expenses reimbursable? Be sure you know the kind and amount of expenses that are. Be sure you understand the kind of documentation to be supplied to the employer for reimbursement and how long you must wait before reimbursement.
  6. Are you entitled to commissions? If so, understand how commissions are earned, the commission rate, and when commissions are paid.
  7. Are you to receive a bonus? If so, how is it calculated, and when is it paid? Is the bonus gratuitous (in other words, merely paid at the employer’s whim and discretion in an amount determined solely by the employer), or is it enforceable by contract with a verifiable sum linked to some specific formula (profits, revenue, output, etc.)?

Many people fail to understand their rights regarding bonuses and are later disappointed or exploited. For example, while some peoplework a full year counting on a bonus and don’t receive it, others receive bonuses that are not even closely related towhat they were expecting. But that is not the worst problem that frequently arises. Employers sometimes fire individuals after the bonus has technically been earned (at the end of the year) but before it is distributed (on February 15 of the following year). They then tell the ex-employee that he or she must be working for the company at the time the bonus is paid in order to collect!

These common abuses can be avoided by understanding and negotiating the following strategies.

STRATEGY 1: Request a verifiable bonus that is not subject to the employer’s discretion. Specify the amount, when it will be paid, and that there are to be no strings or conditions attached. In other words, treat the bonus as part of your salary package; this will increase your legal rights in the event you are not paid.

STRATEGY 2: Request a pro rata bonus in the event you resign or are fired prior to the bonus being paid. For example, if the bonus is computed on sales volume and you work a full year and resign or are fired on December 1 of that year, you should be able to receive eleven-twelfths of the expected bonus. Many employers will accept this provided you give ample notice before the resignation and you are not fired for misconduct (that is, for cause).

STRATEGY 3: Avoid allowing the employer the right to arbitrarily determine when and if a bonus will be paid and in what amount. This arrangement is considered a gratuitous bonus, which may not be enforceable by contract. When an employer controls the timing, amount, and whether or not to pay a bonus at all, or states that the money is paid in appreciation for continuous, efficient, or satisfactory service, employees have a weaker chance to recover an expected bonus from the employer when they are not paid.

STRATEGY 4: Resist arrangements that require you to be on the job after a bonus is earned in order to receive it. If the employer insists on this condition, negotiate the right to receive a bonus if you are fired due to a business reorganization, layoff, or any reason other than gross misconduct.

STRATEGY 5: Get it in writing. Verbal promises to pay bonuses are not always enforceable. Confirm your understanding in writing for additional protection.

STRATEGY 6: Are additional services required in order to earn the bonus? If so, promises to pay a bonus for work, labor, or services already completed at the time the promise is made may not be valid.

STRATEGY 7: Try to link the bonus to some verifiable formula (for example, gross profits or sales volume). Such an arrangement can give you extra legal protection; in the event you are not paid a correct amount, you would be able to verify the bonus from the company’s books and records. In fact, if a bonus-enforceable-by- contract arrangement could be proved in court, you would have the right to inspect the employer’s books and records in a lawsuit.

Many employers are reluctant to base bonuses on verifiable components because they are aware of the vulnerability to exposure in a lawsuit. However, you should leave nothing up to chance when negotiating a bonus. You want to know precisely how the bonus is to be earned and steps to take (for example, the right to be given company records for review) in the event you are not paid what you believe you are owed. Insist on nothing less.

What fringe benefits will you receive? Most employees fail to properly negotiate extra compensation in the form of fringe benefits. Many forms of fringe benefits are even more valuable than salary because they are nontaxable. Don’t forget to ask for fringe benefits during the negotiating process.

The following detailed summary of fringe benefits will be helpful in this area.

INSURANCE BENEFITS. These include basic group term life insurance, basic accidental death and dismemberment coverage, optional group term life insurance, dependent term life insurance, optional accidental death and dismemberment insurance, business travel accident insurance, weekly income accident and sickness plans, illness payment plans, short and long-term disability insurance plans, medical benefit plans, dental benefit plans and legal benefit plans.

This list is not meant to be all-inclusive. Rather, it gives you an idea about the kinds of benefits that are available. However, most insurance benefits are not negotiable, since employers must offer them to all employees so as not to be liable for charges of discrimination.

OTHER BENEFITS. These can include the use of an automobile, free parking, car insurance, gasoline allowance, death benefits, prepaid legal services, credit cards, and loans at reduced rates of interest with favorable repayment schedules. Be sure you know all the elements of your benefit package, and don’t be afraid to negotiate extra benefits when appropriate.

PENSIONS AND PROFIT-SHARING PLANS. Are you entitled to additional compensation in the form of defined benefit, profit-sharing, money purchase, and pension plans? Other benefits you should be aware of are Social Security benefits, Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), 401(k) plans, thrift plans, stock bonus plans, and employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs).

All of these plans are extra financial perks to help you accumulate additional revenue for financial security and your retirement. Be sure you understand what benefits the employer offers in this area and what contributions will be made on your behalf. Other questions to ask:

  • Are you required to contribute matching sums of money? If so, how much will this cost you? Can you increase or decrease matching contributions at your discretion? If so, is notice required and how much
  • Does the investment accumulate tax-free?
  • Can the money be taken prior to your retirement? If so, is there a penalty?
  • What happens if you resign or are fired for cause? Is the money forfeited?
  • What happens if the company is sold or goes bankrupt? Is the money protected?
  • Who administers the plan benefits? How can you be sure that there are no funding liabilities—in other words, how can you be sure that monies will be set aside as promised? Are the plan benefits invested in such a manner as to preclude large losses?
  • If as a result of an acquisition through the purchase of the company you are laid off, how will COBRA and ERISA laws apply?
    • ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act) as modified by COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1986) is a federal law designed to protect you and your beneficiaries’ pension and other benefit rights when you are laid off. Note that ERISA does not apply to employment by churches or federal, state, or local governments, or by companies with 20 or fewer employees, and may not apply if it can be proved that your termination was for gross misconduct. However, in most situations, these laws ensure that money previously set aside on your behalf will be given to you, regardless of internal changes or organizational restructuring in your company.

All of these points and many more should be explored and explained to your satisfaction. Since these financial benefits can account for a large part of additional compensation, never overlook their importance. Always negotiate to receive the maximum amount of benefits available.

RAISES AND JOB ADVANCEMENT. Are periodic raises given? What is the procedure for merit raises and job advancement?

STRATEGY: Employees are sometimes disappointed by the size of annual or periodic merit increases or the speed of job advancement. To avoid problems in this area, be sure you know if such increases are determined by one person’s subjective decision. If they are, request the right to appeal this person’s decision and discuss how this may be accomplished.

RELOCATION EXPENSES. This is money often paid to employees who are required to relocate. Points to discuss and negotiate include questions like these: How much relocation pay will be given? When is it payable, and who will pay for it? Are taxes taken out of the payments?

Be sure to determine whether you need to furnish supporting documentation (copies of bills for legal fees incurred in a house closing, etc.) in order to receive reimbursement. Also, ask what arrangements will be made if you resign or are terminated within a short period of time.

STRATEGY: Do not allow the employer to unilaterally cancel relocation expenses if the job doesn’t work out, because you may have relocated yourself and your family thousands of miles at great expense with no protection. If you are planning to relocate to a distant location, always receive assurances in writing that relocation expenses will be paid regardless of how long you work for the company.

SEVERANCE PAY. Does the employer have a definite stated policy regarding severance (e.g., two weeks of severance for each year of employment)?

Inquire whether severance is paid if you resign as opposed to being fired. Some companies do not pay severance upon resignation and do not pay severance when the termination is for cause.

VACATION PAY. How much vacation pay you get often depends on your salary grade, type of job offered, and how well you negotiate. Be sure you understand how vacation pay is computed and other important matters regarding the granting of vacation time. Consider the following as starting points:

  • Must vacation days be used in the year they are granted, or can they be carried over to the next year? If they can’t, can a prorated share (e.g., one-half the days) be carried over?
  • How long must you work in order to be qualified?
  • Does the amount of vacation time increase depending on the number of years with the company (e.g., two weeks of vacation pay for the first five years, increasing to three weeks of paid vacation from years six to ten)?
  • Must vacation days be taken all at once, or can they be staggered? If so, how?
  • How much notice are you required to give before you can take vacations?
  • Are there times during peak seasonal demands when requests will not be granted?
  • If you leave or are terminated, will you be paid for all unused vacation time?

This last point should be considered carefully. Employees frequently leave their jobs expecting to receive large payments for unused vacation (carried over for several years) but are denied payment in this regard. Some states require companies to pay accrued vacation pay in all circumstances, even when the employee is fired for cause. Thus, check with the Department of Labor in your state or speak to competent legal counsel.

PERSONAL DAYS. Personal days give you a chance to attend to personal business, religious observances, or special occasions. Some companies add them to vacation time with pay. Others only allow personal days without pay. In addition, inquire about absences due to medical and dental appointments, bereavement pay, military leave, paternity leave, appearance in court, and jury duty.

PERSONAL LEAVES. Employers are not required by law to allow employees paid personal leaves of absence, but must apply such practices consistently to all employees if they do. If you are considering taking an extended leave, what about the continuation of medical benefits during this period? Ask whether medical and other benefits terminate at the end of the month when the leave becomes effective. Can you keep those benefits in effect during the absence period by continuing to pay your payroll deductions?

Be aware that federal law prohibits companies from requiring employees to work an extended period of time (such as 12 months) before being allowed to take unpaid personal leaves. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has ruled that not allowing unpaid leave has a disparate impact on women who desire to nurse their newborn children and may violate the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

DISABILITY LEAVE. If you will be a full-time employee, you may be entitled to disability leave should you become unable to work due to a nonoccupational illness.

Note: A company cannot treat pregnancy-related disability or maternity leave differently than it treats other forms of disability leaves of absence.

DISABILITY. What happens in the event you are disabled? Can you receive salary and other benefits for a predetermined period of time? If so, how much and for how long? Understand themeanings of temporary disability and permanent disability and know what ramifications will ensue in the event of such disability.

Other Matters of Concern

In addition to financial benefits, job security, and duties, there are many other matters to discuss at the hiring interview. The following checklist will cover concerns often enunciated by the employer (which may or may not be relevant depending upon your particular situation).

  1. Are you required to protect confidential information and trade secrets acquired while working for the company? If so, agree how this can be accomplished.
  2. Can you have side ventures in a noncompeting business, or must you work exclusively for the company on a full-time basis?
  3. Who owns inventions and processes created by you during employment?
  4. Will disputes be resolved by litigation or binding arbitration? Can the prevailing party recover attorney fees and court costs from the losing party?
  5. To perform your job better and reduce misunderstandings, it is also wise to receive information regarding the following policies:
    • Time clock regulations • Rest periods • Absences • Safety and accident prevention • Authorized use of telephones • Reporting complaints • Making suggestions • Resolving disputes • Personal appearance rules • Solicitation rules • Conflict of interest and code of ethic rules
  6. Does the company require you to sign a contract containing a restrictive covenant prohibiting you from working for a competitor or calling on customers previously solicited during your employ? If so, does the company require all new employees to sign similar contracts?

Restrictive covenants are provisions in employment agreements that prohibit a person from directly competing or working for a competitor after leaving his or her employer. The effect of such clauses varies greatly. For example, they can:

  • Restrict an employee from working for a competitor of the former employer
  • Restrict an employee from starting a business or forming a venture with others that competes against the former employer
  • Restrict an employee from contacting or soliciting former or current customers or employees of the employer
  • Restrict an employee from using confidential knowledge, trade secrets, and other privileged information learned while working for the former employer
  • Restrict an employee from any of the above in both geographic and time limitations

The above points are illustrated by the following clauses taken from employment agreements:

For a period of one (1) year following the termination of your employment for any reason, it is agreed that you will not contact or solicit any person, firm, association, or corporation to which you sold products of the Company during the year preceding the termination of your employment.

Upon termination of the Doctor’s employment under this Agreement for any reason, the Doctor shall not engage in the practice of neurology or open his own office for the practice of neurology or associate himself with other physicians within a five (5) mile radius of the office of the Corporation or a five mile radius of any hospital for which the Doctor has worked on behalf of the Corporation for a period of one (1) year after the effective date of termination.

In consideration of compensation paid to me as an employee, I hereby recognize as the exclusive property of the employer and agree to assign, transfer and convey to the employer, every invention, discovery, concept, idea, process, method and technique which I become acquainted with as a result or consequence of my employment and agree to execute all documents requested by the employer to evidence its ownership thereof.

You may be surprised to learn, however, that such clauses are not always enforceable. Although every case is different, judges have been taking dimmer views of such attempts to restrict an employee’s livelihood. Consult Chapter 8 for more information about the weight such clauses can carry once you are fired or resign.

Whether or not such covenants are legal, however, defending lawsuits involving restrictive covenants is time-consuming and expensive, so you should avoid signing such agreements in the first place. Many employers have a tendency to “hang” such a clause over individuals by threatening to institute legal action after a person’s resignation or termination. This can discourage you from contacting prospective employers and customers in your industry and trade or establishing your own business. Thus, consider the following strategies for help in this area.

STRATEGY 1: Carefully review and resist signing contracts containing restrictive covenants. An employee who works without an employment contract and who leaves without taking any trade secrets has total freedom to work elsewhere in the same industry. This generally includes the right to solicit the ex-employer’s customers. However, you may be subjecting yourself to a lawsuit (even when no valid grounds exist) by signing an agreement containing such a clause.

Always read your employment contract carefully before signing it. What does the restrictive covenant say? For example, does it prohibit you from working for a competitor or calling on customers you previously sold for the company for an excessive period (e.g., two years) ? If so, make the employer aware of this. Negotiate to reduce the covenant to a reasonable period you can live with (e.g., three months) and insist on the right to receive continued salary and other benefits while the restrictive covenant is in effect. Remember, everything is negotiable before you sign on the bottom line. Once the agreement is signed, however, you may be bound by its terms.

STRATEGY2: Always obtain a copy of the agreement after it is signed. Many people forget to do this. After they resign or are discharged and receive a formal demand requesting them to refrain from certain acts (usually in the form of a written cease and desist letter), they cannot locate the agreement containing the restrictive provision. This places them at a disadvantage. For example, they may be unable to obtain an accurate opinion from a lawyer if he or she cannot review the contract or may be forced to spend unnecessary legal fees trying to obtain a copy from the employer. Thus, request a copy of all documents that you sign, and store them in a safe place for later review.

Confirming These Points in Writing

Once you and the company have agreed to key terms, it is essential to confirm the deal in writing. Legal disputes often arise when people are hired on a handshake. A handshake, or oral agreement, indicates only that the parties came to some form of agreement; it does not say what the agreement was. Failure to spell out important terms often leads to misunderstandings and disputes. Even when key terms are discussed, the same spoken words that are agreed upon have different meanings from the employee’s and company’s perspective. Written words limit this sort of misunderstanding.

Although a written contract cannot guarantee you will be satisfied with the company’s performance, it can provide additional remedies in the event of the employer’s nonperformance. Once the agreement is signed, the law presumes that the parties incorporated their intentions into the contract. The instrument “speaks for itself,” and courts will not hear testimony about understandings or discussions before the contract was signed unless the information is necessary to interpret ambiguous terms or establish particular trade customs.

Additionally, be aware that clauses in written contracts can give you negotiating strength. For example, some employment contracts state that terms cannot be changed without the written consent of both parties. If such a clause was included in your contract and an employer attempted to reduce your salary or other benefits, this could not be done without your written approval.

Written contracts also protect employees who are fired in a manner prohibited by the contract. The following is an example of a situation that could occur.

Andrew received a one-year contract to work as an advertising executive. The contract stated that it would be automatically renewed for an additional year if notice of termination was not received at least 90 days prior to the expiration of the first year. Andrew’s company gave him notice that the contract would not be renewed one week prior to the start of the next year. Andrew sued for damages; the court ruled that he was entitled to additional compensation because the employer failed to abide by the terms of the agreement.

Working on a handshake for an indefinite period of time is risky. In most states the law says that if you are hired without a written contract and for a nonspecific period of time, you are “hired at will.” This means that, subject to various exceptions outlined in later chapters of this book, your employer can fire you at any time without notice and without cause.

Due to the unfairness of the at-will doctrine, which affects tens of millions of employees, many more people are no longer accepting being hired on a handshake. Instead, they are recognizing that they can be better protected by including favorable clauses in clearly drafted contracts and are insisting on receiving written agreements whenever they accept a job.

A good employment contract should describe in specific detail all important aspects of your employment, such as term of the contract, duties, authority and responsibility, job description and title, compensation and reimbursement, benefits, termination, and methods for resolving disputes, such as arbitration, mediation, and more.

There are three purposes for every written contract. First, the act of writing helps ensure that both parties to the contract understand and agree to its terms. Second, the written word provides a reminder to both parties of the terms of the agreement. Third, the written, signed, and witnessed contract can serve as evidence if legal action is required to enforce the terms. Each employment contract must be drafted to meet specific situations, needs, and understandings for both the employee and the employer.

Everything in the contract should be very specific. Anything that is vague or open for later negotiation creates a potential misunderstanding and may fail to carry weight in a court of law. So be sure to cover everything that is important to you, and be sure that all understandings based on your discussions and negotiations are included in the written words of the contract.

Consider, for example:

  • Compensation: salary, salary increases, bonus program and requirements, profit sharing, etc.
  • Job description: statement of job duties, authorities, responsibilities, title, etc.
  • Terms of employment: contract period and provision for renewal, at-will, etc.
  • Fringe benefits: pension plan (and when vested), life and health insurance, savings plan, company contribution, etc.
  • Vacation time: number of days, when earned, carryover, etc
  • Sick leave: number of days, conditions for allowance, salary and benefits continuance during extended health-based absences, etc.
  • Arbitration: provision for arbitration or mediation in the event of unreconcilable disagreements affecting the basis of a term in the employment agreement.
  • Termination/resignation: terms leading to employment termination or allowing no-fault resignation, with terms for payment and continuation of benefits upon leaving the company’s employment, etc.
  • Special provisions: office facilities, parking space, dining room rights, recreational facilities, health maintenance programs, medical examinations, company car or equivalent, etc.

Don’t stop with the above mentioned points. Consider all of the things that are important to you related to the job, its benefits, its responsibilities, and its expectations, both positive and potentially negative. Consider what will happen if the economic fortunes of the company fade. What if your job or department is abolished? What if the firm is taken over by another firm? Will you, as the newest employee, be the first to be laid off? Or do you have employment protection? If not, are there protections for termination payments if you are asked or invited to leave?

Whenever you obtain an employment contract or any business document, read it carefully. Question all ambiguous and confusing language. Consult a lawyer if you do not understand the meaning of any terms. Remember that contracts prepared by employers usually contain clauses that work to your disadvantage. Thus, you should review the agreement thoroughly before signing.

When written agreements are used, be sure that all changes, strike-outs, and erasures are initialed by both parties and that all blanks are filled in. If additions are necessary, include them in a space provided or attach them to the contract itself. Then note on the contract that addenda have been added and accepted by both parties. This prevents questions from arising if addenda are lost or separated, because it is difficult to prove there were any without mention in the body of the contract.

Also be sure that the contract is signed by a bona fide officer who has the legal authority to bind the employer to important terms. Finally, always obtain a signed copy of the executed agreement for your files and keep it in a safe place where you store other valuable documents.

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    JA C
    18:28 01 Apr 22
    Steven Sack is like a David to Goliath. He is a rock star employment attorney with a big heart. He immediately took my call and negotiated my agreement. This man really cares about the people's rights. Knowledge/intelligence is his super power. God gifted Mr. Sack! Everyone should read his books to better protect yourself. Thank you.
    Chris Beal
    Chris Beal
    21:39 10 Feb 22
    Steven Sack was amazing. I needed someone to review my offer quickly. Took my call and walked me through the same day! The whole time he was amazing. Actually is extremely funny and charming. I will forever recommend Steven to anyone who needs an employment lawyer. He is sincerely out to protect you!
    James Feliton
    James Feliton
    23:50 13 Dec 21
    Steven reviewed a non-compete agreement for me and he was very professional and gave excellent advice.
    Erin Gallagher
    Erin Gallagher
    20:40 12 Oct 21
    Attorney Steven Sack fights for the little guy/gal/person. He was very kind and generous to help me, knowing that my case was pretty small compared to others. To me, this speaks volumes to his character and shows he does what he does because he truly cares. He also helped me to get a better outcome for my situation, and I am so grateful for that. I cannot thank Mr. Sack enough for his help!
    Spencer Cooke
    Spencer Cooke
    16:42 30 Aug 21
    Mr Sack is unbelievably professional and responsive. He always promptly and clearly provides me with the best information, which has helped my business and has guided my decision making.
    Melissa Robbins
    Melissa Robbins
    21:01 27 Jul 21
    Steven was an excellent attorney who helped me navigate a very difficult work situation with ease. He guided me through every step of the way, has a wealth of knowledge, was an excellent communicator and most importantly, we got a good outcome. I would recommend him without hesitation to anyone looking for an employment attorney,
    I can’t say enough great things about Steven. I knew from our first call that he was different from all of the other lawyers I consulted with, and believe me, I spoke with many. His expertise is apparent and proved incredibly valuable during negotiations. He is extremely transparent, which is hard to come by nowadays, and was always quick to respond and provide updates as soon as they happened.Not only does he know his stuff but he actually cared about the details and circumstances, which personally meant a lot to me and put me at ease during a very difficult time. After a really long search I began to give up hope of finding representation that wasn’t only focused on “what was in it for them” Steven was that needle in the haystack that completely changed my mind. I can’t thank or recommend him enough!
    Brent LaFlam
    Brent LaFlam
    22:26 21 Jun 21
    Steve is the real deal. He helped me navigate a tough time for me (after being part of an unlucky group of employees laid off). He reviewed my severance package, leveled with me straight what was and wasn’t possible, checked in on every step of the process, and in the end — he was able to negotiate a better package for me. I would not have been able to do any of this without his expertise. I highly recommend you consider his services for your employment legal issues, he has the solutions! Thank you again, Steve!
    Tony Luke
    Tony Luke
    21:22 26 Apr 21
    Mr. Sack took my case where other attorney said that I don't have a case and got me a good package from my employer within 2 weeks period. I found him to be knowledgeable, reasonable and very patient. I highly recommend Mr. Sack. He keeps you informed and sometimes he calls me twice a day when there was an update on my case. Thank you Mr. Sack!
    Thomas Gulamerian
    Thomas Gulamerian
    17:54 09 Apr 21
    Mr. Sack is a consummate professional. The best lawyer experience I’ve had to date. Not only is he very knowledgeable but he is also extremely patient with his insight, tutelage and guidance on the subject matter in which you are seeking counsel. A man of tremendous caliber, honesty and integrity.
    Lisa Woliner
    Lisa Woliner
    21:42 29 Mar 21
    Steven Sack was exactly what I was looking for. Anyone needing legal advice shouldn't hesitate to contact Steve. In the dictionary his name should be connected with Honesty and Integrity. We are very happy we found Steven.
    Sunny Youn
    Sunny Youn
    12:32 26 Mar 21
    Honest and provided fair opinion and negotiated successfully on my behalf
    Michelle Morici
    Michelle Morici
    15:50 16 Mar 21
    Steve was very responsive (same day call back where we scheduled a meeting for the next morning). He helped me with a contract and answered legal questions to ensure my business is protected. I paid in advance of the meeting. Steve is the real deal. He called me to confirm my payment immediately after receiving it and showed up for our meeting. He has great follow up too. Knowledgeable, reassuring and professional. Steve's guidance and advice on my situation allowed me to sleep better at night. Thanks Steve!
    Nicky Coscas
    Nicky Coscas
    19:03 03 Feb 21
    Mr. Sack made the process of navigating a tricky situation painless and efficient. Mr. Sack was kind, mild-tempered and so easy to work with. He followed up quickly, was always responsive, and worked quickly. I appreciate the guidance he gave, and couldn't be more thankful to work with such an amazing man.
    Geraldine Grayson
    Geraldine Grayson
    04:22 26 Dec 20
    Great lawyer gets job done and keeps in contact with client. His services made all the difference in getting positive outcome in wrongful termination from major NYC medical center. He obtained for me cash settlement job reinstatement with seniority and raises due. He skillfully handled union lawyer and set bar high. Mr Sack is brilliant communicator and very professional. I recommend his services. He is platinum attorney for employee rights. Best Referral ever from NYC Bar Association.
    Joshua Noah
    Joshua Noah
    21:18 22 Dec 20
    Steven Sack is honest and straight forward. Really appreciated his advice. It is obvious that he cares about his clients.
    Jacqueline Franzese
    Jacqueline Franzese
    17:45 11 Sep 20
    If you are in need of an employment attorney, look no further than Steven Sack. He is incredibly well versed in this area of law, highly intelligent and HONEST. He will fight for you as a client and will always call you back when he says he will. Can't recommend this reliable attorney enough!
    Claudia D.
    Claudia D.
    17:28 19 Aug 20
    Mr. Sacks was kind enough to assist me even though there was no case, he took the time to walk me through some recommendations and provided great guidance and comfort during a difficult time. Mr. Sacks was very candid about my case which in the long run saved me time and grief.
    Justin Smith
    Justin Smith
    17:03 30 Jun 20
    Steven is an outstanding lawyer. He is quick to understand the facts of a case and presents a very amicable attitude towards opposition lawyers. His friendliness and demeanor uncover a human aspect to the legal profession that is often underestimated. I cannot stress enough the reality and truth that the human element matters, sometimes even more than the facts of the case itself. Go with Steven if you need a quick assessment and want to have all your bases covered. He will do everything in his power to get you the best deal possible.
    Karen Vergara
    Karen Vergara
    17:35 22 Apr 20
    Mr. Sack was very supportive and very honest at all times. He tries hard to get the best results and he is always keeping you informed on every step. He is very responsive both on email and phone. I would recommend him to anyone.
    Brian Hurley
    Brian Hurley
    12:34 31 Mar 20
    Steven is a great lawyer. I would highly recommend him to anyone seeking assistance with employment law issues.
    Pamela Joshua
    Pamela Joshua
    19:02 25 Mar 20
    Steven Sack is a consummate professional. He listened and helped me position myself for maximum negotiating power. He helped me every step of the way through the severance negotiation process. He was patient and responded to my concerns as they arose. If you need to even the playing field in discussions between you and your employer, this is your guy.
    Jerry Romano
    Jerry Romano
    19:19 08 Jan 20
    Steve Sack fought for me and was able to get me a better settlement than was initially offered. He was available whenever I needed to speak with him and took the time to explain all of the details.
    Frank C
    Frank C
    20:04 02 Jan 20
    Steven Sack has provided an excellent service for my employment separation review and negotiation. He is very responsive and knowledgeable. I would highly recommend him.
    Luis Quiroga
    Luis Quiroga
    18:22 19 Dec 19
    I hired Steven for an offer negotiation. I was a bit reluctant in working with a lawyer since I'd never hired one for that purpose. I met with Steve and he put me at ease. He was able to clearly articulate the legal concerns and was very transparent about how he would go about it and the likely fees. He helped me get terms that exceeded my expectations. He delivered. I would highly recommend Steven Sack!
    Henry Fong
    Henry Fong
    13:14 09 Nov 19
    Mr. Steven Sack is a consummate trusted professional. I felt comfortable disclosing my personal work matters to him from the moment we met. He is honest, direct, caring, and serious about his work.Mr. Sack communicates efficiently and quickly responds to calls and emails. It was my pleasure working with him and I highly recommend his services.
    Andrea Cody
    Andrea Cody
    13:03 01 Nov 19
    Steven is one of the most caring people I have encountered. He is not only concerned on getting a fair settlement, his compassion for his clients goes above and beyond.He was in contact with us straight through the process and followed up on all emails and phone calls instantly. He is honest, compassionate and has integrity. This is exactly what you would want when you ask someone to represent you.
    DLO
    DLO
    00:53 26 Oct 19
    Laura Cesarano
    Laura Cesarano
    00:31 15 Oct 19
    Mr. Sack was the absolute best. He worked with me and guided me through the entire process, returned my phone calls and emails promptly no matter how busy he was. I never felt rushed and always knew he took the time to listen and advise. He was incredibly fast and efficient. If you’re searching for a lawyer in this area, he is by far the best in the business. I couldn’t thank him enough, I highly recommend him as he is a true professional
    Charles McLean
    Charles McLean
    16:02 05 Oct 19
    I was very glad to have Steven's counsel as I navigated a recent job transition. Steve is extremely knowledgeable and experienced in employment matters, and his advice is always straightforward and on the mark. He's also a great guy and a pleasure to work with. I recommend Steve Sack highly to anyone looking to negotiate a fair deal with their employer.
    David B
    David B
    23:12 14 Aug 19
    Steven was very thorough and helpful on a recent severance agreement I needed to review and negotiate. He was knowledgeable and easy to work with. I was happy with the results at the end. He is great to work with.
    principessa xu
    principessa xu
    22:25 15 Jul 19
    He is very dedicated and good at what he does. Mr. Sack is very professional and provide honest and trust worthy opinion.
    alex jones
    alex jones
    19:15 14 Jul 19
    His knowledge, experience and integrity made our interactions comforting. Always honest, eager, responsive and I'd confidently recommend.
    Scott Holodak
    Scott Holodak
    17:41 21 Jun 19
    Heidi Kunze
    Heidi Kunze
    17:51 13 Jun 19
    I cannot say enough good things about Steven. He is my absolute hero. After being laid off from a job of 14 years, I was devastated, confused and afraid of my future. Steven immediately made me feel at ease. He got right back to me and always kept me up to date on what was going on with my case. It was a complicated case and my previous employers were tough. But Steven fought for every penny for me and got me more than they originally offered. He was clear and always honest. He is a straight shooter and never tried to “over-sell” what he could do for me. HIRE HIM NOW. You will not be disappointed and he will fight for you. Steven is a true gem.
    Mandy Ubinas
    Mandy Ubinas
    19:25 12 Jun 19
    I was a superintendent in the bronx for 30 years when my boss thought i was not cost effective any longer. I was being let go and had nothing to fall back on. I reluctantly went to steven sack but i read about him and his firm and decided to try and I'm so glad I did. I was introduced to andrew sack who took over my case he got me a fair severance and treated me with compassion and they were very straight forward with me. I'm just a blue collor worker,but it's so reassuring to know we have someone that looks out for us. Thank you so much steven, and Andrew sack for making me feel like I'm important.
    Shalisha Alston
    Shalisha Alston
    00:30 01 Jun 19
    Steven Mitchell Sack is an incredible attorney. He is extremely knowledgeable in the field of employment law, is confident, but not cocky, and he's honest about what you're up against, even if you don't like what he has to say. He is kind, caring, and compassionate too. Mr. Sack always returns calls promptly, does what he says he's going to do, and is super affordable. This man is a godsend. I am extraordinarily happy with my results! I highly recommend him to anyone.
    Nina Nadash
    Nina Nadash
    15:52 08 May 19
    You will have a definite sense of security with the services of Steven M. Sack. Attentive, caring and quick results are what we all desire and which he capably and efficiently delivers for negotiating separation agreements. Reasonably priced attentions and solutions.
    Marcia Resnick
    Marcia Resnick
    14:17 21 Mar 19
    Steve Sack was a pleasure to work and I felt very confident having him represent me in my negotiations. He was honest, attentive, quick and very responsive. We accomplished what we had set out to much quicker then I ever anticipated. He exceeded my expectations both in terms of experience and outcome. I will work with him again in the future and highly recommend him for any employment related issues.
    Michael Gross
    Michael Gross
    11:22 09 Mar 19
    Steven Sack is an exceptional lawyer - he took on my challenging employment situation and won more money for me. He understands how to negotiate with companies and how to get more for employees who deserve it. He actually seems to care about his clients and wants to take care of them at a time when they’ve gone through a rough patch.Also, his economics are very fair and are risk free for the employees.Lastly, when I got a new job, Steven reviewed my contract for free and helped make sure that I was better protected this time around.I highly recommend Steven and if ever anything comes up again, I will go back to him.
    Lindsey Brown
    Lindsey Brown
    23:42 28 Feb 19
    Steve was an absolute pleasure to work with and I felt extremely lucky to have him represent me during my employment agreement negotiations. Steve made me comfortable from day 1, clearly setting out the goal and possibilities all while putting his outstanding knowledge of employment law on full display. He clearly and promptly responded to all questions and concerns. I felt like a very important client - he kept to his word and carried every deliverable.I had such a positive experience and would highly recommend Steve Sack as an employment attorney.
    Peter Witt
    Peter Witt
    00:42 26 Feb 19
    Steven was great to work with, he really knows his stuff. He was attentive, honest and there were no surprises. I highly recommend his services.
    Peter Witt
    Peter Witt
    00:34 26 Feb 19
    Steven was great to work with, he really knows his stuff. He was attentive, honest and there were no surprises. I highly recommend his services.
    marybeth poandl
    marybeth poandl
    18:23 18 Feb 19
    Highly recommend for employment related issues. I found Steven to be knowledgeable, professional and honest. He did exactly what he saidhe would do.
    E Zimmer
    E Zimmer
    17:35 31 Jan 19
    Highly recommend for any employment related issues. Practical, professional, straight forward, and no nonsense.
    Cindy Hecht
    Cindy Hecht
    20:52 04 Jan 19
    Mr. Sack is a very proactive attorney who will take your case, even if it is small. My sister is currently using him and he has been a pleasure to deal with and tells you the truth. He doesn't try to fill your head with illusions of grandeur
    Adi Bedi
    Adi Bedi
    21:23 06 Dec 18
    I recently had the opportunity to work with Steven Sack and was greatly impressed by his dedication, compassion and knowledge. He was a pleasure to work with and is cost effective and a thorough gentleman. Highly recommend.
    Jakal42400
    Jakal42400
    13:13 23 Nov 18
    Steven Sack was an extremely professional attorney. And while the situation may not have been exactly what I wanted to hear, he was truthful and to the point about my position. To me, that is what you want from your attorney, professional guidance.
    Ezra Evans
    Ezra Evans
    14:47 23 Oct 18
    Steven is a very helpful and passionate attorney. I was very pleased with his consultation and as a result hired Steven to negotiate my separation agreement. Steven also did not charge me anything extra. I only was charged for the consultation, though I thought Steven's services were excellent. Happy to refer his services to anyone in need as his passionate to help workers was extremely helpful in putting my mind at ease.
    N Golden
    N Golden
    01:11 06 Oct 18
    Steven Sack delivers. He is knowledgeable and direct. He listens. He understands. He is compassionate. He is responsive. Steven is always accessible by phone, by email. He told me exactly what he was going to do and why. Steven then did everything he said he was going to do! I highly recommend Steven's services.
    Marcos Mendelsohn
    Marcos Mendelsohn
    12:47 14 Sep 18
    I couldn't have been happier with how Steven Sack represented me. I felt extremely comfortable with him from the start. He was fabulous in all facets of the reprsentation
    g m
    g m
    14:35 08 Sep 18
    Steven Sack is a very knowledgeable and professional attorney. I had my matter settled within hours of consulting his office. I would highly recommend his services.
    Greeting Carders
    Greeting Carders
    23:01 30 Aug 18
    Steven worked on my case and was able to handle my severance quickly and professionally. Steven's sense of prognosing the outcome of my case was accurate, and I ended up getting a better severance package from my previous employer then they had initially offered. Through all of my anxiety for the result of the severance, Steven was patient with me and helped me regain my composure. He was quick to respond to my inquiries and explained every step of the process to me throughly. Steven Sack is truly a 5-star employee attorney!!!
    Rebecca Spivak
    Rebecca Spivak
    13:43 28 Aug 18
    My case was not only handled quickly and judiciously with the least amount of stress, Steven was also spot on about predicting what they were most liked to agree to and touching back base with me following up every time exactly when he said he would. If at any time he was delayed in reconnecting with me, he would always communicate that to give me the heads up. I was blown away by how on top of his game and organized he is, no matter what his volume of clients are at the moment, to be able to maintain such consistency. It is clear Steven has both the depth of experience and knowledge, alongside being a solid/fantastic human being, that is deeply passionate about his work. This kindness and passion comes through in both his work and interactions with clients. I give Steven Sack a Michelin Star 🌟 💫 rating based on my experience working with him!
    Christina Taitt
    Christina Taitt
    04:48 28 Aug 18
    Steven Mitchell Sack is a very professional and compassionate attorney. He is well versed in his career and has excellent qualifications. When he worked with me for my case, he did an outstanding job and got me the results I wanted achieved. I would highly recommend him to anyone who has employer/ employment issues!
    Nancy Drew
    Nancy Drew
    00:18 21 Aug 18
    Steven Mitchell Sack came highly recommended to me by a former colleague. I was hesitant about even contacting an attorney but all doubts dissipated the moment I met Steve. He began our meeting by telling me about his qualifications and experience complete with supporting letters and articles. I had an immediate sense that I was with someone very special. And he is. Steve is a brilliant and successful attorney, passionate about his work, professional, kind, honest and ethical… Steve is the entire package. He successfully represented me and insured that I was not taken advantage of by my former employer. I could not be more pleased with how well my case was handled or how quickly. Steve wrote the book on the rights of employees. Literally, he wrote the book. Steve Sack is the BEST Labor & employment lawyer in New York, bar none.
    Lisa Flick
    Lisa Flick
    15:05 19 Aug 18
    It was my good fortune to be referred to Mr. Steven Sack by the New York City Bar Legal service to represent me in a proceeding this past year.I was immediately put at ease by his understanding, honest, and forthright manner. His council and legal representation allowed me to extricate myself from a difficult situation with integrity and grace. I would unequivocally recommend Mr. Steven Sack to represent me in any legal matter that may arise in the future.
    S Y
    S Y
    17:44 02 Aug 18
    Steven is an excellent attorney. He is a fierce lawyer and this is a type of lawyer you want to have him on your side. He knows the laws and he is a very compassionate, knowledgeable, sharp, fair and just lawyer. He will respond to your calls and he would not waste your time. And, it is my pleasure to know a man like this. He surprised me, and I am so glad he is my lawyer. He is someone that I am and will always admire.
    Gary Vicari
    Gary Vicari
    21:24 01 Aug 18
    Steven Sack, Attorney, began counseling me on employee rights and how to negotiate with employers for the best possible compensation package in 1998. The outcome was spectacular for me. My employment was cut short after 4 years due to a death in the family, and Steven Sack stepped in on behalf of the family to save our family business from being sold. His skill dealing with the automobile manufacturer, key employees and family set the stage for a successful transition to the next generation, and preservation of the family legacy. He serves as corporate counsel to our family franchised auto business, as well as a Director on the board. Whether he is advising our HR Department on personnel matters, analyzing potential business deals, or giving advice to the myriad of day-to-day activities that occur in a large automobile dealership, Steven Sack brings a keen analytical and legal mind to each situation. Our business, as well as my personal interests, are safe and secure with Steven Sack part of the team.
    Debbie Motz
    Debbie Motz
    15:10 01 Aug 18
    We have had Steven Sack on retainer for our members for several years and continue to receive outstanding and positive reviews about him from our membership. He is one of the best benefits an Association can offer to their membership. We will continue our relationship with Mr. Sack for years.
    joe farricielli
    joe farricielli
    13:08 27 Jul 18
    Steve was great. Very professional when helping with an employment issue and I will use him again with my next contract.
    Brad Ashe
    Brad Ashe
    23:09 24 Jul 18
    I met Steve about 35 years ago when I started my business.During that time, he has not only won every case he worked for me, but I also consider him a trusted friend. Steve has taught me, held my hand in bad times, given me a number of the books he has written, which happen to be extremely informative, and I would trust him with my life. There is nobody in employee/employer law that is better. He has handled other legal matters for me outside, of employee rights, and has always done right by me. Thank you Steve
    Don Cambareri
    Don Cambareri
    15:31 24 Jul 18
    Steve has virtually become a member of my family. Over the 20 years that I know him, and have done business with him, his integrity and ethics, are eyond reproach. Not only has he succeeded in all of my affairs, but I have also referred him to family and friends, who tell me the same thing. I've never had a bad experience, won all of my cases, and never looked back. If you want a completely competent, well prepared, and tireless attorney to fight for you, look no further than Steve Sack. Respectfully, Don Cambareri
    Robin
    Robin
    14:47 24 Jul 18
    The is the best attorney in New York City for employment and labor law. I've been utilizing his excellent services for over 25 years.He is an expert. A extremely kind, patient and honest lawyer who will work to get the best results for you. He is dedicated to justice and he won every case I have had! I highly recommend him. You can trust your case will go quickly and effectively. Steven treated me with the utmost in respect and deeply cares about his clients. I was always calm when he represented me because he is totally a take charge lawyer with a Midas touch! I will not make a legal move on any level without conferring with Steven. Look no further, This is the only lawyer to hire!
    I t
    I t
    15:50 23 Jul 18
    Steven Sack was my attorney. Now I'm proud to say he is my friend. I walked into his office having many questions, and not knowing where to turn. He was extremely friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful. He stayed in contact with me throughout the whole process. Needing an attorney is very stressful. He took away the stress and made me feel like I had someone to go to that was in my corner. I highly recommend Steven if you have a need for an employment attorney. He is without a doubt and amazing human being!
    Jon Liechty
    Jon Liechty
    12:09 23 Jul 18
    Responsive, helpful, and effective! He consistently gets better results than I expect.
    Jason Strulowitz
    Jason Strulowitz
    04:09 23 Jul 18
    Steve is the most exceptional lawyer I have ever used. He is not only a sharp attorney he wrote the book on employment law. Most important he’s a genuine and caring person who treats his clients with respect and fights for them like a warrior! You’re the best! Steve and you really helped me in my time of need. J
    Tina Vanderplas
    Tina Vanderplas
    21:47 22 Jul 18
    Steve Sack is the absolute best in the industry, and is wonderful at reaching a realistic outcome where both parties are happy. He has been a life saver for me twice! He helped me when I was intimated by a very aggressive employer, and he also helped negotiate a fabulous package with a clearly written contract for my following employer. Highly recommend!
    Harold Chudnovsky
    Harold Chudnovsky
    00:55 20 Jul 18
    I have been extremely fortunate to have Mr. Sack as my attorney. He is extremely helpful, compassionate, responsive and extremely knowledgeable. I do not feel alone during this difficult time in my life. He was recommended to me. I feel he is a gift from God.I would highly recommend Mr. Sack to anyone that has issues pertaining to his expertise as an attorney. He is wonderful.HC
    Evgeny Aleksandrov
    Evgeny Aleksandrov
    17:09 18 Jul 18
    Steven is an excellent attorney! Highly practical, exceptionally knowledgeable in labor disputes, and just a fantastic professional who keep things casual. Steven knows his craft so well, he makes it look easy.
    Bob Petrone
    Bob Petrone
    12:27 18 Jul 18
    We have used Stevens services for many years, I find him to be reliable and thorough. Very pleased!
    Larry Lane
    Larry Lane
    15:55 16 Jul 18
    I have been working with Steven since 2002 when we created our company. Finding Steven was one of the absolute best things to happen to us. His advice and guidance has been paramount to our success! I can't stress it enough. Steven does not break the mold on the stereotypical attorney, he shatters it! We use a fair amount of contracts in our business and the Agreements he has put together for us have protected us in a tremendous way. Steven's Agreements have been so good, it has kept us out of the need for any litigation. The reason for this is because the documents are so strong, when we have needed to access them we are able to negotiate a favorable settlement. Steven is sharp, extremely intelligent, personable, accessible and responsive. Steven has become a true friend and confidant, a valued mentor to me personally and to our company!
    Yuliya Kurash
    Yuliya Kurash
    14:39 13 Jul 18
    Steven is an exceptional lawyer that is considerate of his clients. A lawyer that meets with you in person, consistently responds to emails and phone calls and provides regular updates is hard to find. Steven did all and above. I highly recommend him as an employment lawyer. One of the best I've ever worked with.
    Anastasia De Leon
    Anastasia De Leon
    04:19 29 Dec 17
    Steven Sack is an excellent attorney, he's knowledgeable, attentive and meticulous. As a result of his expertise and skillful persuasion my employment related case was settled amicably in a short period of timeI highly recommend his services.Steven is also the author of the book "The Employee Rights Handbook" which is an excellent book if you want to know your rights as an employee.
    Jay
    Jay
    22:10 11 Oct 17
    Exceptional employment attorney & a pleasure to work with. Highly recommend.
    William Teitler
    William Teitler
    23:16 26 Sep 16
    Steven Sack is a top-notch labor and employment lawyer. His book "The Employee Rights Handbook" is an amazing resource for all employees. He is extremely experienced and knowledgeable. Steven is incredibly passionate about employment law and his cases. I highly recommend attorney Steven Sack.
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