Michael Aleo


Biography

Michael’s practice is focused on civil litigation, including disputes involving employment and labor law, personal injury, medical malpractice, housing, civil rights, First Amendment, and municipal law.

Prior to joining Lesser, Newman & Nasser, Michael practiced at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights in Boston, Massachusetts, where he represented victims of race and national origin discrimination. Before practicing at the Lawyers’ Committee, Michael practiced employment law in Washington, D.C. and San Francisco, California.

In 2012, Michael was selected as a “rising star under 40” in the annual list published by the Thompson Reuters rating service in Boston Magazine.

In addition to practicing law, Michael has taught legal writing and research at American University Washington College of Law, Golden Gate University School of Law, and New England Law Boston, and he has taught undergraduate courses at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and at Bay Path University.

When not litigating, teaching, or enjoying time with his family, Michael indulges in music and political activism (see, e.g., @mikealeo).

Admitted

  • Massachusetts
  • United States District Court, Massachusetts
  • United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit

Education

  • University of Massachusetts, Amherst, B.A.
  • American University Washington College of Law, J.D.

Associations & Memberships

  • Massachusetts Bar Association
  • Hampshire County Bar Association

Biographical Details

  • Super Lawyers, “Top Rated Employment Litigation Attorney in Northampton, MA
  • Community Action, Board of Directors, 2014-
  • Adjunct Professor: Bay Path University, 2013-; University of Massachusetts, Amherst, 2012; New England Law, Boston, 2009-2011;  Golden Gate University, 2007; American University, 2006-2007
  • The Committee to Elect Mary Olberding for Register of Deeds, Treasurer, 2015-
  • MassVOTE, Board of Directors, 2010-2014
  • Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights (Boston), 2008-2011

Publications

Michael Aleo, Pablo Svirsky, Foreclosure Fallout: The Banking Industry’s Attack on Disparate Impact Race Discrimination Claims Under the Fair Housing Act and Equal Credit Opportunity Act, Boston University Public Interest Law Journal 1 (Fall 2008)

Michael E. Aleo, “Card Check Recognition: the Ongoing Legal and Legislative Battle” (2006), Bepress Legal Series Working Paper 957.

Michael E. Aleo, “Comparative Advantage and Labor Protections in Free Trade Agreements: Making Labor Protections in Trade Agreements Practical and Effective” (2006), Bepress Legal Series Working Paper 958.

Representative Cases

Employment

  • Amara v. Copley Plaza Hotel, Civil Action No. 09-11802-JLT (D. Mass. November 18, 2010), Represented seven employees who alleged discrimination based on national origin, surviving the employer’s multiple motions to dismiss and motions for summary judgment before resolving the matter.
  • Green v. Parts Distribution Xpress, Inc., Civil Action No. 10-11959-DJC (D. Mass. November 29, 2011), Represented an employee whose employment as a truck driver had been terminated after he complained about discrimination in the workplace. The employer had treated him as an independent contractor, rather than as an employee. The plaintiff brought discrimination and wage and hour claims against his employer, as well as a G.L. c. 93A claim against the third party entity that certified him as an independent contractor. The case resolved shortly after Judge Casper denied the third party’s motion to dismiss the c. 93A claim.
  • Bonds v. School Committee of Boston, 80 Mass.App.Ct. 1113 (2011), Successfully appealed trial court’s allowance of motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict.
  • Gharib v. Wolf, 518 F. Supp. 2d 50 (D.D.C.), Defended an employer against sixteen counts brought by a former employee. Judge Leon granted the employer’s motion to dismiss all of the employee’s claims based on lack of diversity jurisdiction.

Housing

  • Barrett v. H&R Block, Inc., 652 F. Supp. 2d 104 (D. Mass. 2009), In this class action, the plaintiffs alleged that the defendant’s lending practices were unlawful because they resulted in a disparate negative impact based on the race of the borrowers, namely, unfavorable lending terms. The defendant moved to dismiss the claims based on the theory that the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act did not allow disparate impact claims. Michael, with the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights, submitted an amicus brief in support of the plaintiffs’ disparate impact claim. Judge Zobel denied the defendant’s motion to dismiss.

Criminal

  • Commonwealth v Anthony P. Baye, 462 Mass. 246 (2012), The Supreme Judicial Court suppressed the defendant’s confession, holding that it was involuntary because the investigating police officers used multiple improper interrogation techniques.

Civil Rights

  • Holyoke City Council v. Mayor Alex Morse, et al (Hampden Superior Court), Successful defended against motion for preliminary injunction seeking to shot down the Holyoke Needle Exchange (with Attorney William Newman).

Municipal Law

  • Powers v. Tracy (Hampshire Superior Court), Represented individual who had prevailed in defending the use of his tractor trailer truck on his property at a municipal board hearing. Defeated the plaintiff’s appeal under G.L. ch. 40A, § 17 on a motion for summary judgment.
  • Skawski et al. v. Wedegartner (Western Division Housing Court), Represent seven plaintiff-abutters in their appeal of the Greenfield Planning Board’s decision to grant a special permit to Greenfield Investors. Defeated the defendants’ motion for summary judgment challenging the plaintiffs’ standing.