Eric R. Thiessen
Eric is licensed in Tennessee and Virginia and focuses his practice on commercial matters, labor and employment issues, and various kinds of litigation. He represents employers and select individuals in a variety of discrimination, wrongful discharge, and tort actions in federal courts and state courts. He also represents clients before state and federal agencies in administrative hearings involving employment and workplace safety issues.
Eric maintains an active litigation practice in both Tennessee and Virginia. Eric has been lead counsel in jury trials and represented clients in numerous appeals in state and federal courts. He has represented clients in commercial, employment, tort and environmental litigation, and in tax refund claims against both federal and local government.
Counseling and Compliance Practice
A considerable component of Eric’s practice is counseling clients (companies, non-profits, and public entities) concerning compliance with federal and state labor and employment laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, Family and Medical Leave Act, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Fair Labor Standards Act, WARN Act and OSHA. He has provided training programs and workshops for employers and has conducted internal investigations concerning labor and employment matters. He has advised local governments on employment issues. He also drafts business contracts, non-compete agreements, severance agreements, and other types of employment contracts.
Publications and Speaking Engagements
Eric regularly publishes and speaks before chambers of commerce, human resource organizations, industry groups, and bar associations. He has given over 70 seminars, briefings, and programs on various labor and employment topics. A copy of his past programming and publications can be found here.
Bar and Public Service
Eric has been active in the Virginia State Bar (VSB) and has done programming for the Virginia Bar Association (VBA) Labor Relations and Employment Law Section. He served on the Board of the VSB Young Lawyers Conference from 1998-2003 and served on the Board of the VSB Section on Education of Lawyers from 2001-2007.
Eric graduated from Drake University Law School, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Drake Law Review, and completed his undergraduate education at Washington & Lee University. He moved to Abingdon in 1996 to complete a judicial clerkship with then U.S. Magistrate Judge Cynthia D. Kinser (who is currently a Justice on the Supreme Court of Virginia).
Prior to law school he worked for approximately one year in the White House as a writer for President George H.W. Bush in 1992-1993. Eric continues to be active in local, regional, and national politics.
Eric resides in Abingdon with his wife, who is a special education teacher and adjunct professor at Emory & Henry College, and three children. He is an outdoorsman and enjoys the opportunities Southwest Virginia and Northeast Tennessee offer for cycling, running, backpacking, hiking and fly fishing. He has competed in numerous triathlons, marathons, and challenge century cycling events in the region.
- Supreme Court of the United States
- United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
- United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia
- United States Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Virginia
- United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
- United States Court of Federal Claims
- United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee
Virginia State Bar
- Board of Governors, Young Lawyers Conference, 1998-2003
- Board of Governors, Section on Education of Lawyers, 2001-2007
- Member, Section on Litigation, 1997-Present
Virginia Bar Association
- Civil Litigation Section, 1997-Present
- Labor Relations and Employment Law Section, 2005-Present
Tennessee Bar Association
- Labor and Employment Law Section, 2005-Present
- American Bar Association
- Law Clerk, Honorable Cynthia D. Kinser, U.S. Magistrate Judge, 1996-1997 (currently Justice, Supreme Court of Virginia)
- Editor-in-Chief, Drake Law Review, 1995-1996
- Staff Writer, The White House, 1992-1993