Kristin has extensive litigation and alternative dispute resolution experience in a wide variety of matters with concentration in labor and employment, medical malpractice, and health care. She represents some of Hawai`i’s largest public and private employers in all aspects of their labor and employment needs.
Prior to joining Cades Schutte, Kristin served as a law clerk to the Honorable Marie N. Milks, Circuit Court of the First Circuit, State of Hawai`i.
- Representation of employers for state and federal EEOC and HCRC claims and civil lawsuits alleging violations of Title VII, 42 U.S.C. §§ 1983, 1981, Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, Hawai`i Whistleblower’s Protection Act, H.R.S. Ch. 378, and retaliation claims.
- Representation of employers in coordination and resolution of employees’ various civil, administrative, collective bargaining, unemployment, FMLA, and worker’s compensation claims.
- Representation of employer in class action discrimination Title VII claim involving allegations of retaliation and national origin discrimination.
- Defense of grievance arbitrations involving discipline and termination of employees for workplace violence, patient abuse, sexual harassment and other misconduct.
- Successfully challenged the constitutionality of the Hawai`i Civil Rights Commission’s “right to sue” procedures, ensuring jury trials for employers on employment discrimination claims in SCI Management v. Sims, 101 Hawai`i 438, 71 P.3d 389 (2003).
- Litigation involving breach of independent contractor agreements and non-compete agreements.
- Conducting employee investigations.
- Drafting of employee handbooks and policies and training/counseling of management and staff regarding risk avoidance and proactive management practices.
- Conducting investigations for hospital system for compliance with federal CMS and Anti-kickback regulations.
- Advising major hospital system administration and medical staff in peer review proceedings, corrective action, and bylaw review.
- Representation and negotiation on behalf of hospitals in coverage and payment disputes with health care insurers.
- Successful defense of H.R.S. 103D and 103F procurement disputes from administrative hearing through civil litigation.
Insurance Defense and Professional Liability
- Defense of hospitals and physicians in medical malpractice litigation in state and federal courts.
- Defense of manufacturers and retailers in products liability cases involving strict liability, product defects and mass tort liability.
Commercial and Real Estate Litigation
- Obtained rescission of fraudulent sale of property from LLC to undisclosed related company.
- Enforcement of major shopping mall tenant’s lease covenants against landlord for violation of exclusive use provisions.
- Successfully argued client’s challenge to County requirement of conditional use permit for cellular antennae in Conservation District.
- Trademark litigation involving cybersquatting forcing the transfer of infringing domain names to client.
- Enforcement of easement and right of way in residential and commercial properties.
- Represented major lender in commercial foreclosure where debtor attempted to evade collection through multiple bankruptcies, shell corporations and fraudulent practices.
- Residential foreclosures, workouts, and judgment collection for several of Hawai`i’s major banks and mortgage lenders.
- 2012 Chambers and Partners®, Labor & Employment: Leading Individuals; Up-and-Coming
- Listed in Best Lawyers® of America since 2015 for Employment (Management)
- J.D. (1997), Georgetown University Law Center, cum laude
- B.A. (1994), University of California at Berkeley
- Hawai`i State Bar (1997)
- United States District Court for the District of Hawai`i
- United States Circuit Court of the Ninth Circuit
- Hawai`i State Bar Association
- Federal Bar Association
- American Bar Association
- Hawai`i Access to Justice Commission
- Subcommittees on Initiatives to Enhance Civil Justice (2008-present)
- Ad Hoc Pro Bono Committee (2012-present)
- Subcommittee on Barriers to Access to Justice (2008-2010)
- Board of Directors Legal Aid Society of Hawai`i (2008-2014)
- Board of Directors Iona Contemporary Dance Theatre (2003-2011)
- Halau Na Mamo O Pu’uanahulu
- Chair of the firm’s Recruiting Committee and Summer Associate Committee
- “Proactive HR: Implementing Best Practices to Minimize Legal Risks,” Hawai`i Employers Council seminar (July 2016) (co-presenter with Amanda M. Jones, Esq.)
- “Crime Shouldn’t Pay: Avoiding Employer Liability from the Use of Criminal Background Checks,” Hawai`i Employer’s Council seminar (July 2015) (co-presenter with Amanda M. Jones, Esq.)
- “Files Are Our Friends: Strategies for Complying with Recordkeeping Laws and Avoiding Legal Disputes,” Hawai`i Employers Council seminar (May 2014) (co-presenter with Amanda M. Jones, Esq. and Elijah Yip, Esq.)
August 15, 2016 - 28 Cades Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers of America® 2017
October 2, 2015 - Upcoming: Cades Schutte Seminar on Employment and Labor Law
August 17, 2015 - 28 Cades Attorneys Listed in Best Lawyers of America® 2016
October 24, 2013 - Cades Schutte presents scholarship to Zane Kunimura at Pro Bono Celebration