Serving the State of New Hampshire Since 1908
Municipal & School Labor & Employment Law

NH Municipal & School Labor & Employment Law

A bedrock of Upton & Hatfield has long been its labor and employment services. Personnel and labor issues are increasingly important to municipalities, and our labor relations team is well equipped to assist our municipal clients through all stages of the labor negotiation process, including collective bargaining. Questions surrounding statutory bargaining procedures, negotiated CBA terms, and managerial prerogatives can be complicated subjects. Our labor relations attorneys are well versed in this area of the law and have represented municipalities and school districts in all areas of public labor law, including collective bargaining, labor grievances, arbitration hearings, unfair labor practices, mediation, fact-finding, and union elections and certifications. Although our goal is to work with our municipalities and their staff to prevent grievances and unfair labor practice complaints whenever possible, if needed, our labor relations team is prepared to assist our municipal clients with the grievance process and/or litigate disputes through the appropriate channels. We regularly appear before the Public Employee Labor Relations Board (PELRB), the Department of Labor, the Commission for Human Rights, the EEOC, and in state and federal courts.

Outside of the labor relations context, our attorneys are experienced in providing human resources management including:

  • Discipline and discharge
  • Human Resource counseling related to employee hiring, compensation, evaluations, and documentation
  • Compliance with federal and state wage & hour, leave of absence, and anti-discrimination laws such as the FLSA, FMLA, ADA, ADEA, USERRA, the New Hampshire Law Against Discrimination, and the New Hampshire Whistleblowers’ Protection Act
  • Investigation of complaints of unlawful harassment, discrimination and other workplace misconduct
  • Personnel policies and handbooks
  • Trainings and workshops in all aspects of state and federal employment law

Representative Matters

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Seth Peters, et al. v. Town of Nottingham, Rockingham Sup. Ct.

    Successfully defended Town's denial of a building permit on a substandard right-of-way.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Kulick's v. Town of Winchester, Docket Number 2016-0054

    Successfully defended a challenge to a planning board decision granting a site plan for the construction of a gas station and Dunkin’ Donuts in town. The New Hampshire Supreme Court held that the board properly considered the application under the administrative finality doctrine, properly granted waivers for the site plan, and the applicant’s storm water management plan complied with the town’s storm water regulations.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Doyle v. Town Gilmanton, 155 N.H. 733 (2007)

    Established authority of planning board to establish a buildable area separate and apart from the zoning ordinance.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Forster v. Town of Henniker 167 N.H. 745 (2015)

    The Supreme Court upheld the Town’s position that a wedding center was not accessory to an agricultural use.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Hannaford Bros. Co. v. Town of Bedford, 164 N.H. 764 (2013)

    The Supreme Court found that a supermarket owner did not have standing to appeal the Town’s grant of a variance to a competitor.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Daniels v. Town of Londonderry, 157 N.H. 519 (2008)

    This Supreme Court decision upheld the Town’s decision to approve a cell phone tower and explored the interface of the Federal Telecommunications Act and the law of variances.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Cheryl Poussard, et al. v. Town of Nottingham, Rockingham Sup. Ct.

    The Court affirmed the Zoning Board’s decision and found that the Board’s decision to grant a special exception was neither unlawful nor unreasonable.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Landmark Planning & Development, LLC v. Town of Greenfield

    Town of Greenfield Zoning Board of Adjustment and Town of Greenfield Planning Board, Hillsborough Sup. Ct. Town prevailed on a number of issues involving a major subdivision.

  • Zoning & Land Use Law Tonnesen v. Town of Gilmanton, 156 N.H. 813 (2008)

    This Supreme Court decision upheld the Town’s denial of a special exception for aircraft takeoffs and landings.

  • Municipal Real Estate Dow v. Town of Effingham, 148 N.H. 121 (2002)

    Successfully enforced the Town's ordinance and procedures for implementing the ordinance over objection of a racetrack owner. The decision clarified the Town's authority to enact ordinances regardless of motivation and to inspect a permitee's premises.

  • Municipal Real Estate Doyle v. Town Gilmanton, 155 N.H. 733 (2007)

    Established authority of planning board to establish a buildable area separate and apart from the zoning ordinance.

  • General Counsel Appeal of Pennichuck Water Works, 160 N.H. 18 (2010)

    This Supreme Court decision upheld a Public Utilities Commission order authorizing the City of Nashua to acquire New Hampshire’s largest investor-owned utility, Pennichuck Water Works, by eminent domain.

  • General Counsel Daniels v. Town of Londonderry, 157 N.H. 519 (2008)

    This Supreme Court decision upheld the town’s decision to approve a cell phone tower and explored the interface of the Federal Telecommunications Act and the law of variances.

  • General Counsel Appeal of Town of Deerfield, 162 N.H. 601 (2011)

    The Supreme Court upheld the town’s position that it was not required to recognize a collective bargaining unit.

  • General Counsel Forster v. Town of Henniker, 167 N.H. 745 (2015)

    The Supreme Court upheld the town’s position that a wedding center was not accessory to an agricultural use.

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Our Promise to Our Clients
  • A Reputation for Excellence

    We are known for our unwavering commitment to achieving the objectives of our clients.

  • A Legacy of Successful Results

    Our 100-year legacy is built on achieving successful results for our clients.

  • Committed to the Community

    We are proud to support a number of worthy non-profit organizations as a way to give back to our community.

  • Diverse Breadth of Experience

    We provide our clients with full-service legal representation across a variety of practice areas.

  • Client-Focused Solutions

    We pride ourselves on providing our clients with personalized legal representation that meets their unique needs.

  • Experience on Your Side

    Founded in 1908, we put more than 100 years of practice and experience to work for our clients.

A Reputation for Outstanding Service

Developed Client by Client
  • “The attorneys and staff at the Hillsborough office were very knowledgeable and helpful. I have also used them for estate planning and have recommended them to many of my friends and family.”

    - Amanda V.
  • “Heather Burns and Michael McGrath were a methodical and dedicated team throughout my medical malpractice case. They were relentless in their search for every detail and aspect of their findings. They left no stone unturned.”

    - Christina L.
  • “We would like to thank you for your guidance and assistance as we went through the process of estate planning. Your kindness, patience, and calmness were such a gift throughout the process.”

    - M & T
  • “I worked with Sabrina Beavens to draw up my will, medical directives and POA. I couldn’t have been more pleased with the turn-around time and charges associated. Extremely professional & very easy to work with. I couldn't be any happier.”

    - Joshua M.
  • “I was extremely happy with Upton and Hatfield's real estate service. The attorneys and staff at the Hillsborough office were very knowledgeable and helpful. I have also used them for estate planning and recommended them to many of my friends and family.”

    - Amanda V.
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