Michael D. Billok
Mike is the co-chair of the firm’s cybersecurity and data privacy practice, and a member of the firm’s labor and employment practice. When employers are faced with a charge or lawsuit alleging a violation of employment law, or have questions regarding cybersecurity and data privacy, they turn to Mike. He has successfully represented employers before:
- The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in several states, obtaining dismissals of charges alleging harassment, discrimination, and retaliation.
- The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), during both inspections and the post-inspection citation process, as well as state agencies that operate their own OSHA-compliant programs, including several high-profile matters.
- New York State agencies, including the New York State Division of Human Rights, the New York State Industrial Board of Appeals, and the New York State Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board.
- Arbitrators from the American Arbitration Association (AAA) and Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) concerning labor and contract issues.
Mike is a Certified Information Privacy Professional/United States (CIPP/US), a credential offered through the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP). Launched in 2004 as the first professional certification to be offered in information privacy, the CIPP/US has become the preeminent credential in the field. The CIPP/US credential demonstrates a strong foundation in U.S. privacy laws and regulations and understanding of the legal requirements for the responsible collection, use, and transfer of sensitive personal data. Mike advises employers on the overlap between cybersecurity and data privacy and employment issues, including privacy of employees, as well as the large impact of employees on cybersecurity and data privacy issues.
Mike regularly represents employers in state and federal court, defending against actions alleging violations of employment laws such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, including class actions, as well as collective and class actions under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and New York Labor Law (NYLL). Representative cases include:
- Savoie v. GenPak, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168691 (D. Minn. Dec. 15, 2014). After removing the case to federal court, Mike obtained summary judgment for the client in the case of a former employee claiming age discrimination and retaliation.
- Dipigney v. AutoZoners, 2014 DNH 214 (D.N.H. 2014). After removing the case to federal court, Mike obtained summary judgment for the client in the case of a former employee alleging national origin discrimination under state and federal law.
- Joiner v. MVP Service Corp., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 36275 (W.D.N.Y. Mar. 19, 2014). Obtained summary judgment for the employer in a case where a former employee alleged hostile work environment, harassment and discrimination based on her race and gender, and alleged retaliation based on her previous filing of an EEOC charge.
- A wage and hour collective and class action initially brought against a nationwide client on a nationwide basis, that was significantly narrowed in scope and size over the course and discovery, and ultimately resolved via court-approved settlement.
- A wage and hour collective and class action brought against a hospital by current and former employees alleging time worked during meal periods, which was ultimately resolved via court approved settlement.
Mike regularly counsels clients in a wide range of industries—including manufacturing, retail, healthcare, and not-for-profit organizations—providing advice and training on all aspects of the employment relationship.
Mike is a 1996 graduate of the United States Naval Academy, and was a submarine officer in the United States Navy until 2004. He served onboard the USS NEVADA (SSBN 733) based out of Bangor, Washington; instructed students at the Naval Nuclear Power Training Unit in Ballston Spa, New York; and was the Submarine Manpower Analyst for the office of the Chief of Naval Personnel in Washington, D.C. Before returning to upstate New York and joining Bond, Mike was an attorney at the Washington, D.C. office of a multinational law firm.
Honors and Affiliations
- Listed in:
- BTI Client Service All-Stars 2017
- New York Super Lawyers 2016®, Upstate New York Rising Star, Employment and Labor
- New York Super Lawyers 2015®, Upstate New York Rising Star, Employment and Labor
- Order of the Coif
- Certified Information Privacy Professional/United States (CIPP/US)
- Associate Editor, Georgetown Law Journal
- Panel Member, Cybersecurity for Human Resource Professionals, CNY SHRM, 4/6/17
- Panel Member, Tracking the Latest Initiatives of the New Secretary of Labor, and What is On the Horizon for Labor Agendas in the Year Ahead?, American Conference Institute’s 30th National Forum on Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions, 6/12/16
- Will Overtime Rules Changes Impact Your Organization? Upcoming Exemption Changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act, Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce, 10/18/16
- Legal Ethical Implications of Social Networking by Attorneys and Clients, Panel Member, New York State Bar Association Seminar, 10/24/14
- Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce, Human Resources Seminar, 2/19/14
- “Business Report: What To Do When Demand Exceeds Output,” Glens Falls Business Journal, 4/14/17
- "Business Report: What To Do When Demand Exceeds Output," Saratoga Business Journal, 4/7/17
- Quoted in “OSHA limit on silica exposure: excessive?,” Buffalo Law Journal, 7/18/16
- Quoted in “Businesses must contend with higher workplace safety fines,” Albany Business Review, 7/6/16
- Billok, Michael D. and Stevens, Christopher J., "Keeping Up With Evolving Cybersecurity Regulations,” New York Law Journal, 6/6/16
- "OSHA Makes Sweeping Changes to its Illness and Injury Reporting Rule," Business Journal News Network, 5/21/16
- Michael D. Billok and Clifford G. Tsan, "Cybersecurity Insurance: Facing Hidden Risks and Uncertainty," New York Law Journal, 5/2/16
- "Business Report: Is 2016 Open For Business?," Saratoga Business Journal, 1/8/16
- "Court Calls a Fault on Tennis Umpires’ Misclassification Argument," Bond Complex Litigation Quarterly, Spring 2015
- President, Board of Directors, Adult & Senior Center of Saratoga Springs
- Board Member, Saratoga County Economic Opportunity Council
- Leadership Tech Valley Graduate, 2012
- Leadership Saratoga Graduate, 2014