Rod Betts has successfully represented California employers on labor and employment law matters for over 35 years. He started his career at Gray Cary (now DLA Piper) and became a partner at that firm, and was Chair of the Employment and Labor group at Gray Cary for several years. In 2004, Rod joined his former partners from Gray Cary—Rich Paul, Fred Plevin, and Mike Sullivan—who had left Gray Cary in 1998 to found the Paul, Plevin firm.
Rod is one of the most experienced management side labor lawyers in Southern California, having represented a wide variety of public and private sector clients on union matters, including San Diego Transit Corporation; San Diego Trolley, Inc.; the Zoological Society of San Diego; the San Diego Padres; the City of San Diego; the City of Chula Vista; the City of Escondido; San Diego County Regional Airport Authority; and Bimbo Bakeries USA. Rod has handled well over 100 labor arbitrations on behalf of management, including discharge and contract interpretation cases.
Rod is also a very successful trial lawyer, having tried dozens of cases before juries, judges, and administrative law judges. His trials have involved claims of wrongful termination, employment discrimination, and wage and hour violations. Rod’s employment law clients include American Specialty Health, Inc.; ResMed Corp; the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System; Bartell Hotels; Employers Resource Management; Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; and Full Steam Staffing, LLC.
Rod utilizes his years of experience in representing employers in labor and employment law matters to provide practical advice to clients on difficult issues including union matters, employment terminations, layoffs, wage and hour and prevailing wage matters, and investigations of employee misconduct.
Rod is a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, a national, invitation-only group of the finest labor and employment attorneys in the United States. Rod has been repeatedly selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® and has been named one of California’s top Labor and Employment law attorneys by Super Lawyers magazine. Rod was named Best Lawyers® San Diego Lawyer of the Year for Labor Law — Management in 2018, San Diego Lawyer of the Year for Litigation – Labor and Employment in 2015, and San Diego Lawyer of the Year for Labor Law — Management in Best Lawyers’ 2013 edition. Rod has been recognized in the Los Angeles Times as one of Southern California’s Best Lawyers, and has been recognized by the San Diego Daily Transcript and San Diego Magazine as one of the “Best Lawyers in San Diego.” Rod was named by Martindale-Hubbell as a Top Lawyer for 2016 and 2017 in the Labor & Employment category as published in San Diego Magazine. Rod has received Martindale Hubbell’s highest rating (“AV”) for legal ability and ethical standards, based on the confidential opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary.
- University of Kansas Law School, J.D., 1981, Order of the Coif (top 10% of class)
- Fort Hays State University, B.S., 1978, summa cum laude
- Paul, Plevin, Sullivan & Connaughton LLP Partner (January 2004 – Present)
- Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich Associate (1981-1987); Partner (1988-2003)
- All California state courts
- All United States District Courts in California
- United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit