Tami J. Penner

Senior Counsel

Tami Penner specializes in advising clients on all aspects of employment law, including employment agreements, wage and hour issues, leaves of absences, disability accommodations, employee policies, privacy, protection of proprietary information, performance management, workplace investigations, discipline and termination.  Tami has more than 20 years of experience representing and partnering with employers of all sizes to effectively navigate employee challenges and compliance issues with continually developing employment laws. She has successfully defended clients at both the trial and appellate levels in both state and federal courts and before administrative agencies, mediators and arbitrators.

Tami works closely with management and human resources professionals and advises multi-state employers on many legal topics under various state employment laws, including wage and hour compliance, agency audits, discrimination laws, independent contractor issues, leaves of absence management, complex reductions in force and WARN Act compliance, in-house investigations, occupational safety and background checks.'

Along with advising clients, Tami provides regular trainings to management and staff on numerous topics, including preventing workplace harassment, general management principles and best practices, managing employee leaves and disability issues, avoiding wage and hour claims, and the differences between California and federal employment laws for employers with multi-state locations.


  • University of Nebraska College of Law, J.D., 1993, with High Distinction, Order of the Coif, Law Review, Editor
  • University of Nebraska, 1988, B.A., with Highest Distinction


Professional Experience

  • Paul, Plevin, Sullivan & Connaughton LLP, Senior Counsel, July 2016 – Present
  • Dentons, Senior Counsel, 2013 – 2016
  • Veterans Medical Research Foundation, Counsel, 2006 – 2013
  • Luce, Forward, Hamilton & Scripps LLP, Associate/Counsel, 1993 – 2006



  • All California state courts
  • All United States District Courts in California


Professional Activities

  • Member, State Bar of California, Labor and Employment Law Section
  • Member, San Diego County Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section



  • California Paid Sick Leave Law Goes Into Effect July 1, 2015, June 2015
  • California Court of Appeal—Out-of-State Forum Selection/Choice of Law Provisions Most Likely Unenforceable in Wage Disputes, June 2015
  • It Pays to be Sick in California, September 2014
  • California Allows Employment Class Action Waivers; But the PAGA Threat Persists, June 2014


Speaking Engagements

  • Case Study on the Toughest Leave of Absence Scenarios, PPSC Annual Employment Law Update, October 2017
  • How to Conduct A Gender Equity Audit, PPSC Annual Employment Law Seminar, October 2016

Tami has lectured or made presentations for the following organizations on a variety of employment law topics:

  • Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM)
  • California Employers Association (CEA)
  • San Diego Chamber of Commerce
  • Lorman Education Services
  • San Diego State University, Adjunct Professor for 10+ years, HR and Employment Law