Biography

Michael Kass is a partner who represents clients on a wide range of employment, general corporate and litigation matters. A member of the firm’s Employment and Labor practice area, he also co-chairs the firm's Noncompete/Trade Secrets practice area. Chosen by his peers to be included in The Best Lawyers in America since 2013 and as a "Lawyer of the Year" in 2019, Michael serves clients ranging from individuals and small, closely held businesses to Fortune 100 corporations. He formerly served as chair of the firm’s Employment and Labor practice area.

Serving as outside general counsel to several companies, Michael oversees all aspects of legal issues for many of his corporate clients. He customizes business and legal strategies to meet each client’s overall goals and objectives, paying particular attention to the effect decisions will have on overlapping legal and business issues.

Michael defends employers and their managers involving the wide spectrum of employment litigation, including claims concerning employment agreements and noncompete agreements, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), medical leave issues under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), sexual harassment and various other forms of discrimination under Title VII, background check-related claims under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and Title VII, Sarbanes-Oxley and Dodd-Frank whistleblower protection, and sales commissions and compensation issues. He defends such claims in state and federal courts and before administrative agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) the Missouri Commission on Human Rights (MCHR), the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), the U.S. Department of Labor and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

A considerable portion of Michael’s practice is devoted to both counseling clients and litigating claims concerning non-compete and nonsolicitation agreements and the protection of trade secrets. He regularly provides strategic counseling and pursues or defends claims on behalf of employers attempting to enforce agreements and statutory rights against former employees, on behalf of employers hiring employees from a competitor and on behalf of individual employees. He also handles some types of business litigation, including shareholder disputes in closely held entities.

Well-versed in policies and best practices within the non-compete/trade secrets and employment law areas, Michael regularly writes, speaks and trains on these topics. He crafts specially tailored programs aimed at maximizing a company’s ability to prevent unfair competition from former employees, as well as programs that focus on preventatively guarding against the threat of employment-related suits in general. In addition, he develops executive employment agreements, personnel policies, employee manuals and other employment-related documents and advises executives and professionals about the terms of their own employment contracts.

Education

  • Ohio State University - Michael E. Moritz College of Law  (J.D., 1999)
  • Ohio State University  (B.A., 1996)
    • Political Science
    • Minor in Yiddish

Admissions

  • Missouri, 1999
  • Illinois, 2000
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Missouri

Professional Activities

  • The Missouri Bar 
  • Illinois State Bar Association 
  • Defense Research Institute

Charitable and Civic Involvement

  • Millstone Institute for Jewish Leadership, Jewish Federation of St. Louis (Advisory Committee Member, former Fellow)
  • Torah Prep School (Vice President, Executive Board Member)
  • Agudas Israel of St. Louis (Board Member, former Treasurer)

Accolades

  • The Best Lawyers in America®; Employment Law—Management, Labor Law—Management (2013-present); Lawyer of the Year (2019)
  • Missouri/Kansas Super Lawyers® (2016-present); Missouri/Kansas Super Lawyers®, Rising Star (2011-2015)
  • Co-author of a comprehensive article, “Non-Compete Agreements and Unfair Competition—An Updated Overview,” in 2006 on Missouri non-compete law. The article has been cited as authoritative by the Missouri Supreme Court and Missouri Court of Appeals and received The Missouri Bar’s award for the Outstanding Article Published in 2006.