Brette Bensinger advises employers on new and evolving employment laws. She has counseled numerous clients on the implications of COVID-19 in the workplace, including compliance with the new mandatory sick leave law; guidance and notice requirements when furloughs, temporary layoffs, and reductions in force are necessary; as well as insights and updates on the changing unemployment laws and state work-share programs; and critical confidentiality and safety concerns when addressing possible COVID-19 exposure in the workplace.
Brette's practice also includes counseling employers on the prevention and response to harassment complaints, as well as wage and hour compliance, employee discipline, paid and nonpaid leave requirements, and disability accommodations. Her practice extends to creating workforce policies and employee handbooks, focusing on those addressing social media and electronic communication. She also performs management training and conducts investigations into allegations of workplace misconduct, including complaints of harassment/hostile work environment, retaliation, and regulatory non-compliance.
Having litigated multi-plaintiff lawsuits in court and defended employers before governmental agencies at the federal, state, and local levels, she uses her knowledge of the law to anticipate problems and offer practical solutions before they develop into litigation. If litigation becomes necessary, Brette calls upon her advocacy skills, which have been recognized by attorneys and business leaders in both the private and public sector, to best represent her clients.
Brette joined Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP as an associate in September 2005. Previously she was a law clerk with the firm.
During law school she clerked in the Crime Victims Division of the Office of the Illinois Attorney General and in Preliminary Hearings at the Cook County State's Attorney Office.
Prior to her legal career, Brette was a project manager for an event marketing company, handling corporate sponsorship programs and contracts for music festivals nationwide.
Honors & Awards
- Recognized by her peers as a "Leading Lawyer" in the area of Employment Law: Management, 2018 – 2019
- Named to the "40 Under Forty" list by the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin and Chicago Lawyer Magazine, 2017
- Recognized as an "Emerging Lawyer" by Leading Lawyers Magazine, 2012 – 2017
Brette's presentations include:
- Co-Presenter, "Employer Compliance and COVID-19: Paid Sick Leave, Furloughs, and Layoffs," Chicago Bar Association CLE, Webinar, April 23, 2020
- "Spoliation of Evidence: Prevention and Consequences," American Bar Association Committee on Litigation - Trial Evidence, Chicago, Illinois
- "Chicago Bar Association's New Partner Panel," Chicago Bar Association, Chicago, Illinois
- "Chicago Committee on Minorities in Large Law Firms: Law Firm Boot Camp on Professional Development" Sidley Austin LLP
- "Fair Labor Standards Act Recurring Issues," Hinshaw’s Annual Labor & Employment Seminar, Hoffman Estates, Illinois
- "Employer's Guide to Overtime and Tip Credit Regulations," Illinois Restaurant Association, Chicago, Illinois
- "No Electronics in the Classroom," Edward J. Lewis II Lawyers in the Classroom Program, Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
- "Discrimination Law 101: Evidence and Burdens of Proof in Discrimination and Retaliation Cases," Hinshaw's 2010 Annual Labor & Employment Seminar, Hoffman Estates, Illinois
- "Stop Unauthorized Overtime: How to Implement and Effective, Legally Sound Tracking and Discipline Program," Business & Legal Reports, Inc., audio conference
- "Payroll Basics: What HR Professionals Need to Know About Payroll Administration; Get Up to Speed Now," Business & Legal Reports, Inc., audio conference
- April 29, 2020Insights for Employers
- March 19, 2020Insights for Employers
- November 25, 2019
- May 19, 2016
- June 26, 2014
- June 3, 2013
- April 1, 2013
- February 28, 2013
- December 3, 2012
- July 2, 2012
- June 4, 2012
- April 2, 2012
- January 3, 2012
- October 4, 2011
- July 11, 2011
- Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, Member of the Public Policy Committee of the Board of Directors
- Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago Founders’ Board, Chair of the Advocacy Committee and Member of the Executive Committee
- Illinois Constitutional Rights Foundation, Lawyers in the Classroom Program, Law Firm Facilitator
- Illinois Judges Foundation, Auxiliary Board Member
- Federal Bureau of Investigation Citizens Academy, Alumni Member
J.D., Chicago-Kent College of Law at Illinois Institute of Technology, 2005
B.A., English, Northwestern University, 2000
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois