Michael T. Garone


Michael Garone has over 35 years of experience in traditional labor, employment and appellate law, with a special emphasis in the law of arbitration. He has represented employers in over 100 labor arbitrations and has been involved in all aspects of collective bargaining, advising on grievance issues, contract negotiations and the requirements of state and federal law. He has substantial federal and state litigation experience in Oregon and Washington courts in trials and appeals involving traditional labor issues, employment law and many other issues.

Experienced labor and employment counsel

Michael has litigated numerous cases before the National Labor Relations Board as well as other federal and state administrative agencies and courts. Drawing on his litigation experience, he provides thoughtful and practical advice on a wide range of labor issues. He has defended against union organizing campaigns and represented management in several highly contentious and publicly visible labor disputes. Understanding the complex facets of such disputes, Michael devises litigation strategies that further his clients’ interests on multiple levels.

Michael has represented management in numerous discrimination and wage and hour cases in which his depth of experience is invaluable. He has defended class action wage and hour lawsuits in both Oregon and Washington, as well as several class action arbitrations.

Appellate practice at the highest levels

Michael has led Schwabe’s Appellate practice group since 2003, sharing his knowledge with clients and colleagues throughout the firm. His appellate work includes diverse cases, including those outside the labor and employment fields. During his 35-year career, he has appeared before the Oregon and Washington Courts of Appeals, the Oregon and Washington Supreme Courts, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. Michael has authored or co-authored several successful certiorari and merits briefs for the U.S. Supreme Court.


"Michael Garone and Jean Back are who I work with most. They are always on top of current ‎employment & case law decisions. They tailor their advice based on my company's existing ‎policies, practices, and culture so that I can easily apply it to our current work environment. They ‎quickly grasp complex issues and come back with a logical solution or the right document that I ‎need for every situation. Their fast responses & expertise saves me time & based on a proven track ‎record, I am always confident I've got the best advice from them.‎"

-SEH America



  • Represented maritime clients regarding highly contentious labor disputes with the longshoremen’s union, which have involved several administrative hearings, lawsuits, and appeals to both the Ninth Circuit and D.C. Circuit Courts of Appeals.
  • Represented major nationwide retail establishments regarding numerous wage and hour class action cases in Oregon and Washington in trial courts and on appeal.
  • Handled several appeals regarding arbitration law in both state and federal courts. Successfully represented two companies that had arbitration issues of national importance before the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Successfully represented property owners with regard to important constitutional issues in appeals before the Oregon Supreme Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
  • Authored a successful petition for writ of certiorari and was counsel of record in a U.S. Supreme Court case (Hall Street Associates, LLC v. Mattel, Inc., 2008), a case involving a legal issue of national importance in the field of arbitration law.
  • Served as a principal petition and merits brief author in a case that was accepted for review by the U.S. Supreme Court (Rent-A-Center, West, Inc. v. Jackson, 2010), involving a critical legal issue in arbitration law.

Memberships & Awards


  • American Bar Association Member, Litigation Section, Labor and Employment Section, Federal Labor Standards Subcommittee
  • Oregon State Bar Member, Labor and Employment Section, Past Chair


  • Oregon Super Lawyers, Employment & Labor (2016-2020)
  • Best Lawyers in America Award, Labor Law and Employment Law (2010-2021)
  • Ranked for Labor and Employment Lawyers in Oregon, Chambers USA (2018-2020)

Resources & Ideas


Seminars & Speaking Engagements

Community Activities

Community Activities

  • Clackamas County Children’s Commission, Board of Directors




Oregon State Courts

Washington State Courts

Oregon Supreme Court

Washington Supreme Court

United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit

United States Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit

United States Court of International Trade

United States District Court, District of Oregon

United States District Court, Western District of Washington

United States District Court, Eastern District of Washington

United States Supreme Court

Outside The Office

Ideas Fuel Industries