Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
Sam Fulkerson’s practice is focused on the representation of management in all phases of the employment relationship, including litigation before federal and state courts, regulatory and administrative agencies, and in arbitration matters. He also handles litigation matters involving the enforcement of non-competition and confidentiality agreements, breach of employment contracts, handbook and personnel policy violations, wage and hour disputes, and other disputes arising out of the employment relationship.
Sam has extensive experience in mediating and arbitrating employment disputes before the American Arbitration Association and other alternative dispute resolution organizations. He also has successfully represented employers in ERISA-based lawsuits against third-party administrators for misuse of employer funds, and against insurers for bad faith denial of employer claims under medical excess loss policies.
In addition to litigation matters, Sam assists employers in developing employment policies and arbitration programs, and with preventive training for both management and hourly employees. He also routinely advises employers on hiring, discipline and termination, severance and reduction-in-force matters.
Sam lectures frequently on employment law topics in Oklahoma and elsewhere, including for the University of Oklahoma Center for Continuing Education, the Oklahoma Bar Association, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit Annual Seminar, and the Southern Methodist University School of Law Multi-State Labor and Employment Law Seminar. Sam also has published scholarly articles in the Oklahoma Law Review and the Society for Human Resource Management Legal Report, and he was the primary author of “Age Discrimination in the Workplace: A Primer for Human Resource Professionals,” Society for Human Resource Management (1999). He has also taught employment discrimination law while serving as an adjunct professor at the Oklahoma City University School of Law.
Sam is the designated co-representative of McAfee & Taft as the exclusive member firm representing Oklahoma in the Employers Counsel Network, a nationwide affiliation of leading law firms providing legal assistance and representation to employers. He is also co-editor of the Oklahoma Employment Law Letter, a monthly review of new court decisions, regulations and laws that affect state employers, as well as co-editor for the Oklahoma section of the annual guidebook for employers and human resources professionals, 50 Employment Laws in 50 States.
His achievements have earned him inclusion in Chambers USA Guide to America's Leading Lawyers for Business, The Best Lawyers in America (labor and employment law, labor and employment litigation) and Oklahoma Super Lawyers, which also named him to its list of "Top 50 Oklahoma Lawyers." Sam holds the distinction of being the only Oklahoma attorney named to the 2011-2012 edition of the International Who's Who of Managment Labour & Employment Lawyers and for being selected "Best Lawyers' 2012 Oklahoma City Labor and Employment Litigation Lawyer of the Year," an honor only given to a single lawyer in each legal specialty in each community. In 2011, he was named to The Journal Record's list of Leadership in Law Award honorees.
Sam previously served as the leader of the firm’s Labor and Employment Group for five years.