Michael D. Pierce

Office Location: Norfolk, VA.

Education
  • B.A., Christopher Newport University
  • J.D., Regent University School of Law
Judicial Clerkship
  • Newport News Circuit Court
Courts & Administrative Bodies
  • U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
Professional & Community Activities
  • Executive Committee of the South Hampton Roads Bar Association – President
  • Virginia State Bar, Mandatory Continuing Legal Education Board, Member
  • Virginia Bar Association
  • Old Dominion Bar Association
  • Norfolk and Portsmouth Bar Association
  • Society for Human Resource Management, Hampton Roads Chapter
  • American Bar Association
  • St. Mary’s Home, Home Board, Member
  • City of Norfolk Grievance Panel, Chair
Notable Accomplishments
  • South Hampton Roads Bar Association, “Member of the Year” (2017)
  • South Hampton Roads Bar Association, “Young Lawyer of the Year” (2018)
  • Virginia Lawyers Weekly, “Up & Coming Lawyer” (2018)
  • Old Dominion Bar Association, “President’s Award” (2019)
  • Coastal Virginia Magazine, “Top Lawyers” – Labor Employment (2019-present)
  • Virginia Business “Legal Elite” (2020-present)

Michael is an associate with the firm.  His practice includes matters involving labor and employment lawworkers’ compensation insurance defensemaritime law, and general litigation.  He defends lawsuits in both state and federal courts.  His detail-oriented writing and research make him an asset to all clients, whether they are embroiled in intense litigation or seeking guidance on compliance and regulatory issues. 

In employment litigation matters, Michael has represented employers in discrimination actions brought under the ADA, ADEA, FMLA, Title VII, and the Equal Pay Act.  He has made several successful appearances before the EEOC, disputing and overcoming charges filed by disgruntled former and current employees.  He also has defended companies in wage and hour disputes brought under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  In addition, Michael has experience representing employers and insurance companies in workers’ compensation matters, having successfully briefed and argued matters before the Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission.  He has also researched and briefed traditional labor law matters pending before the National Labor Relations Board. For clients seeking to resolve matters outside of court, Michael likewise has experience mediating claims to settlement. 

In his role as legal counselor, Michael advises clients in developing and implementing various workplace policies including leave policies, compensation schemes, and progressive discipline systems.  He also assists clients in drafting, revising, and updating employee handbooks.  For employers in the hiring phase, Michael has experience drafting and reviewing employment agreements with various provisions including enforceable non-compete clauses, confidentiality provisions, and mediation and arbitration clauses.  Michael also can provide guidance in drafting job descriptions and conducting the hiring process in an efficient and effective manner without running afoul of any federal or state restrictions.

Michael also serves as an adjunct professor at Hampton University, teaching an undergraduate legal writing course to pre-law students. In this capacity, Michael not only works to ensure students learn how to communicate complex legal rules and theories clearly, but he also candidly exposes students to the realities of day-to-day life in modern law practice. 

Michael is the President of the South Hampton Roads Bar Association and is also a member of the Virginia, Old Dominion, and Norfolk & Portsmouth Bar Associations.  In May 2018, he was appointed to the Mandatory Continuing Legal Education Board by the Supreme Court of Virginia.

Michael received his J.D. from Regent University School of Law. During law school, he served as a federal judicial intern to the Honorable Raymond A. Jackson and the Honorable Henry E. Hudson.  After graduating, Michael completed a judicial clerkship with the Newport News Circuit Court where he performed extensive legal research and writing for the Honorable David F. Pugh, the Honorable Timothy S. Fisher, and the Honorable Gary A. Mills. 

Prior to attending law school, Michael earned his B.A. in Political Science from Christopher Newport University.  He later completed Regent University’s Career Switcher program and was awarded his Virginia teaching license.  Afterward, he spent time teaching government and economics at an urban high school in Norfolk.

In the professional field, Michael values the opportunity to serve with tenacity, efficiency, and excellence. When not working, he enjoys spending time with his lovely wife, Teneisha, and their five exceptional children: Micah, David, Arianna, Ian and Jaxon. 

Representative Matters
  • Represented tow truck company and second chaired successful mediation and resolution of six-figure sex discrimination, retaliation, and equal pay suit raised by former employee. (Pollyanna Scott v. Western Branch Diesel, Inc., Case No. 4:17-CV-00174-BO, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina)
  • Served as local counsel in federal district court to national credit card printing company and second chaired successful mediation and resolution of six-figure sex and race discrimination suit raised by former employee. (Vernette Baldwin v. First Data Resources, Inc., Case No. 2:17-cv-542, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia)
  • Represented residential homeowners in contract dispute against unlicensed contractor and construction company and obtained judgment in favor of homeowners after circuit court bench trial. (Thomas Clyburn, et al. v. J.I.T. Builders, Inc., et al, Case No. CL19-690, Norfolk Circuit Court)
  • Represented condominium association in contract dispute against unit owner and obtained five-figure judgment in favor of the association after circuit court bench trial.(Hardesty House Condo. Owners Assoc. v. Melissa Shorty, Case Nos. CL19-6938 and CL19-6940, Norfolk Circuit Court)
  • Represented construction company, insurance company, and surety bond company against painting subcontractor and successfully briefed and argued demurrer dismissing breach of contract suit based on painting subcontractor’s failure to satisfy conditions precedent to litigation. (Blue Ridge Painting Contractors, Inc. v. Oyster Point Constr. Co., et al., Case No. CL1704255M-03, Newport News Circuit Court)
News
Five Attorneys Named 2021 Virginia Super Lawyers ‘Rising Stars’
/ Firm News
Vandeventer Black is pleased to announce that five attorneys are amongst the 2021 Virginia Super Lawyers Rising Stars list. The Rising Star designation recognizes the top up-and-coming lawyers who are 40-years-old or younger or who have been practicing for ten years or less. The selected attorneys are: Jennifer L. Eaton- ...
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Attorneys Recognized as 2021 Top Lawyers of Coastal Virginia
/ Firm News
Attorneys from the Norfolk-based business and litigation law firm, Vandeventer Black, have been recognized as Top Lawyers of Coastal Virginia for 2021. This distinction is a peer-rated nomination given to those lawyers who exemplify excellence in their specialty. The recognized attorneys are: Admiralty, Maritime & Transportation Edward J. Powers Arbitration ...
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Vandeventer Black Attorneys Selected as 2020 Legal Elite
/ Firm News
Thirty Vandeventer Black attorneys have been recognized as ‘Legal Elite’ for 2020 by Virginia Business Magazine. Every year, the magazine partners with the Virginia Bar Association to grant this award to attorneys nominated by their peers for this recognition. The selected attorneys are: Christopher Ambrosio, Business Law Anne G. Bibeau, ...
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Articles
Can my Company Compel Compliance with an COVID-19 Employee Vaccination Policy? It’s a Definite Maybe…
/ Labor & Employment
In the past week, millions of Americans watched as volunteers and government officials received the first COVID-19 vaccinations on U.S. soil.  Businesses of all sizes are feeling the pandemic’s devastating effects and employers are likely contemplating whether they may legally implement a mandatory vaccination policy for employees. The answer, as ...
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Virginia Federal Court Dismisses Employee’s COVID-19-Related Wrongful Termination Lawsuit
/ Labor & Employment
For Virginia employers, 2020 has turned their world upside down between the complicated issues arising from the coronavirus pandemic and a wave of new state employment laws.  However, a recent decision issued in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia lends some support to employers exercising ...
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Supreme Court Extends Title VII Protections to LGBTQ Workers
/ Labor & Employment
On June 15, 2020, the United States Supreme Court officially declared that LGBTQ persons are protected from discharge or discipline because of sex under the anti-discrimination provisions of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  The Court’s landmark decision came as somewhat of a surprise considering that the ...
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