Charles V. Firth
Charlie Firth focuses his practice on employment law, including litigation, employer counseling and class actions. Throughout his legal career, Charlie has maintained as his guiding principle aggressive and ethical representation in pursuit of the best possible solutions for each of his clients. The diversity of Charlie’s experience helps him identify and address a wide variety of client needs. While Charlie has consistently practiced in employment law matters, he also has experience in litigating cases involving class actions, government fraud (False Claims Act – qui tam), personal injury, wrongful death, shareholder disputes, trade secret misappropriation, sexual abuse, medical malpractice, legal malpractice and commercial disputes. Charlie is a native Minnesotan who graduated from the University of Minnesota Law School, and returned to Minnesota in 2007 after practicing law in Washington, D.C., Cambodia and New Mexico.
Charlie is also Of Counsel with Kenney & McCafferty, P.C., a law firm nationally recognized for its False Claims Act (qui tam) practice. Kenney & McCafferty, P.C., has served as counsel in achieving some of the largest recoveries in the history of the False Claims Act, including settlements with GlaxoSmithKline ($3 billion), Pfizer ($2.3 billion), and Eli Lilly ($1.3 billion). Charlie is experienced in pursuing qui tam actions and is prepared to serve as counsel in Midwest-based and nationwide cases.
Charlie’s employment law expertise is broad, as he has successfully represented clients in matters involving federal and state Fair Labor Standards Act wage and hour collective and class actions, sexual harassment, gender, race, disability and sexual orientation discrimination, retaliation, whistleblower, workers’ compensation retaliation, and FMLA retaliation. Notably, Charlie has fought for his clients’ rights in high-profile cases of a national scope, including being appointed as class co-counsel in Dukes, et al. v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., working to recover over $300 million from the oil industry in a Federal False Claims Act case, U.S. ex rel. Johnson v. Shell Oil Co., and bringing cases that resulted in the recovery of more than $30 million under the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act.
Charlie has also been successful at trial. Most recently, he represented a client who brought claims against her former employer of disability discrimination, retaliation and failure to accommodate pursuant to the Minnesota Human Rights Act. The Court awarded double backpay and emotional distress damages in addition to punitive damages, attorneys’ fees, costs and interest, which resulted in a recovery of $456,000.
Charlie’s international legal experience includes directly advising the Cambodian government, non-governmental organizations and private sector clients in efforts to strengthen the rule of law, assist in rebuilding Cambodia’s judicial system and prepare legislation relating to the management of the country’s natural heritage, including its national parks and other protected areas. In particular, Charlie advised and counseled multinational corporations on their compliance with Cambodian and international law with regard to labor, employment, commercial, corporate and contract matters.
Areas of Practice:
- Employment Law (litigation and counseling)
- Civil Litigation
- Shareholder Disputes
- Class Action
- Government Fraud (qui tam)
- Catastrophic Personal Injury
- Wrongful Death
- Medical Malpractice
- State of Minnesota
- State of New Mexico (inactive)
- District of Columbia (former)
- U.S. District Court for Minnesota
- U.S. District Court for New Mexico
- U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
- University of Minnesota Law School, J.D., cum laude
- Northwestern University, B.A.
- Volunteer Attorney of The Year, Cancer Legal Care, 2018.
- Consistently selected by his peers to the Minnesota SuperLawyers list. He is also AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell.
Professional Associations and Memberships:
- Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund (“TAF”)(Former)
- Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund (“TAF”)
- Minnesota State Bar Association
- New Mexico State Bar Association (former)
- District of Columbia Bar Association (former)
Publications and Presentations:
- The 2019 Proposed Pro-Employee Bills Attorney at Law Magazine, Co-Author with Tom Marshall, March, 2019
- Injured Reserve or Active Roster – Your Disability Game Plan, Engelmeier & Umanah Seminar, December, 2014 (co-presenter)
- “Adapting to Change” . . . ADAAA and Mental Health Issues in the Workplace, Engelmeier & Umanah Seminar, November 2012, Co-Author
- Returning to Work, University of Minnesota Medical School Survivorship Series, Moving Beyond Cancer, April, 2010 (presenter).
- After the Crash, Minnesota School Bus Operators Association and Minnesota Association for Pupil Transportation Winter Conference, January, 2010 (presenter).
- Respectful Workplace or Hostile Environment? What Does Your Team Look Like and What Must the Employer Do?, Minnesota Symposium on Terrorism and Emergency Preparedness, November, 2009 (co-presenter).
- Potential Ethical Issues Arising Out of Counsel Representing the Union and Individuals, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union Attorneys’ Conference, October, 2000 (co-author).