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Aaron D. Arnson

602-772-5522 | Aaron@PierceColeman.com

Aaron is a Partner at Pierce Coleman PLLC. His practice includes employment law, civil litigation, and public law.

Employment Law and Litigation Practice

Aaron routinely advises and defends private and public clients in all aspects of employment law. His litigation experience includes representing management and employers in lawsuits for alleged wrongful termination and violations of Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, the First Amendment, the Due Process Clause, the Fair Labor Standards Act, and other federal and state discrimination and retaliation statutes and common law claims. He also represents clients before various federal and state agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Arizona Civil Rights Division, the Department of Labor, the Industrial Commission of Arizona, and other administrative agencies and in personnel appeals.

A significant part of Aaron’s practice is advising clients on day-to-day policies and practices to help management and employers mitigate risk and avoid litigation. Aaron frequently advises clients on all aspects of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation laws, wage and hour compliance, and other legal issues. He also works with his clients to draft and revise employment, partnership, and operating agreements, draft and defend non-compete and confidentiality agreements, and craft employment handbooks, social media policies, and other materials.

Aaron frequently conducts personnel investigations for both public and private clients, often involving sensitive issues and executive and other high-level employees. He has also served as the legal advisor to various boards and commissions in personnel appeals and related matters.

He frequently writes and presents to private industry and public groups on new and ongoing employment law issues.

Representative Matters:

  • Obtained full dismissal/summary judgment on multiple employment lawsuits and administrative charges against various private and public employers.

  • Successfully represented client in employment suit before Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals; resulted in court upholding grant of summary judgment in favor of client.

  • Served as lead counsel in federal jury trial of Equal Pay Act and Title VII claim; jury verdict resulted in award approximately 82% less than plaintiff’s pretrial settlement demand.

  • Represented construction client in a Department of Homeland Security I-9 Form inspection; secured resolution of matter on behalf of client with no monetary penalties.

  • Successfully negotiated walk-away settlement of employment claim against non-profit professional organization brought by former member.

  • Defended arbitration claim on behalf of major retailer; resulted in complete defense award and award of costs for client.

  • Represented restaurant client in Department of Labor wage and overtime audit; secured an approximately 65% reduction in back wages and penalties originally imposed by the Department.

  • Successfully opposed enforcement of overbroad non-compete and non-solicitation agreements on multiple occasions.

  • Successfully appealed adverse unemployment tax determination on behalf of a local arts education nonprofit organization.

  • Conducted department-wide independent investigation of department director and subordinate accused of various misconduct and policy violations, including extensive document review and over two dozen witness interviews.

Public Law Practice

In his public practice, Aaron advises and represents clients in a broad array of legal matters. He handles and advises on procurement issues, contracts, construction law, real property matters, land use, zoning, and development agreements. Aaron also advises his public clients on open meeting laws, public records laws, elections law, code compliance, and conflicts of interest matters.

Aaron serves as the contracted city/town attorney or assistant attorney for multiple municipalities throughout Arizona. He routinely attends council meetings and executive sessions; reviews and drafts contracts, resolutions, policies, and other public documents; and serves as a trusted advisor to councils and executive management teams on day-to-day general counsel matters as needed.

 

Aaron prides himself on being solutions-oriented and on helping his clients get to “yes” while minimizing risk. He is a frequent presenter on municipal issues and is respected for his legal judgment and guidance.

Representative Matters:

  • Represented municipal clients in negotiating several multimillion-dollar development agreements with developer.

  • Successfully guided staff and town council on substantive rewrite of zoning ordinances.

  • Regularly oversee outside counsel on various litigation and compliance matters and manage litigation for municipal clients.

  • Served on advisory committee to draft model city ordinance for regulation of short-term rentals in Arizona.

  • Successfully defended open meeting law complaints brought against several municipal clients, obtaining full dismissals from the Office of the Arizona Attorney General.

  • Represented Cochise County Election Director in election litigation; resulted in favorable judgment and determination that Director’s actions complied with state law.

Admissions and Education

Aaron received his B.S. in Business Management from Brigham Young University in 2010 and his J.D. from the J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University in 2013, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude and served as an executive editor of the BYU Law Review.

He began his legal career clerking for the Honorable Ann A. Scott Timmer of the Arizona Supreme Court and practicing at one of the Southwest’s most highly regarded law firms.

Aaron is licensed to practice law in Arizona.

Memberships/Activities

  • J. Reuben Clark Law Society, Greater Phoenix Chapter—member and former board member

  • Arizona City Attorneys’ Association—Member

  • Millennial Choirs and Orchestras—Grand Chorus Member, Bass Section; https://www.millennial.org/

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