Lichten & Liss-Riordan, P.C.
Pyle, Rome, Lichten, Ehrenberg & Liss-Riordan, P.C The Labor, Employment and Class Action Attorneys
Harold L. Lichten

Harold Lichten is a 1974 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and received his law degree from New York University in 1977. He began his career as a legal aid lawyer in the states of New York and Maine. For the last 25 years, his practice has concentrated on labor, employment, and class action law. He has represented numerous labor unions in both the private and public sector with an emphasis on representing fire fighter and police unions throughout Massachusetts. He also represents labor unions at Verizon.

In addition to his work on behalf of labor unions and their members, Mr. Lichten has tried numerous federal and state court jury trials on behalf of employees who were wrongly terminated, victims of unlawful discrimination, or whose rights to proper wages and overtime were violated. He has also argued numerous appeals before the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, the Maine Supreme Court, and the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. He has litigated landmark cases in the fields of disability rights, race discrimination, First Amendment rights of public employees, and wrongful misclassification of employees as independent contractors.

In addition to his work for labor unions and individual employees, Mr. Lichten is currently litigating a significant number of wage and hour class actions on behalf of employees both in the state of Massachusetts and nationwide who have been deprived of overtime, training wages, or who have been wrongfully misclassified as independent contractors. He is also litigating cases on behalf of banquet servers at hotels in Massachusetts and Hawaii whose tips or service charges have been wrongfully withheld or skimmed by their employers.

Mr. Lichten is also the author of numerous articles relating to employment and labor law including a recent article for the AFL-CIO lawyers conference on the misclassification of employees as independent contractors. In 2003, he was named a “Massachusetts Lawyer of the Year” by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. He has also been included in “Best Lawyers in America” (Chambers) and has been named a “Super Lawyer” by Boston Magazine for the past several years.

Major Cases

Amero v. Townsend Oil Company, 2008 WL 5609064 (Mass. Super. 2008) (in one of the first decisions issued under the Massachusetts Independent Contractor statute, the court held as a matter of law that an oil delivery employee had been wrongfully misclassified as an independent contractor)

Welch v. Town of Stoughton, 542 F.3d 927 (1st Cir. 2008) (won appeal and jury verdict finding that the Town of Stoughton had violated the First Amendment and whistleblower rights of a sergeant in the Town’s police department)

Bradley et al. v. City of Lynn et al., 403 F.Supp.2d 161 (D.Mass. 2005) (a successful class action lawsuit which resulted in a finding that the entry-level civil service examination for fire fighters in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts discriminated against minority candidates)

Quinn v. City of Boston, 325 F.3d 18 (1st Cir. 2003) (striking down Boston’s 30-year-old hiring system for fire fighters as discriminatory)

Sprague v. United Airlines, Inc., 2002 WL 1803733 (D.Mass. 2002) (successfully winning an 18-day disability discrimination trial, proving that United Airlines unlawfully rejected an applicant for an airline mechanic position because he was deaf, resulting in judgment of more than $1 million)

Dahill v. Police Dept. of Boston, 434 Mass. 233 (2001) (establishing the legal definition of a disability in Massachusetts and won a jury trial verdict of close to $1 million for a police officer wrongfully denied hiring because of a disability)

Police Com’r of Boston v. Gows, 429 Mass. 14 (1999) (establishing the right of a wrongfully terminated police officer to reinstatement and back pay)

White v. City of Boston, 428 Mass. 250 (1998) (establishing the right of disabled police officers to return to employment once they have recovered from their work-related injuries)

Rozanski v. A-P-A Transport, Inc., 512 A.2d 335 (Maine 1986) (establishing that employers may not use medical screening devices designed to eliminate individuals with potential handicaps)

Maine Human Rights Commission v. City of Auburn, 408 A.2d 1253 (Maine 1979) (landmark sex discrimination case requiring the hiring of the City’s first female police officer)

In the News

Mr. Lichten was named a 2003 Lawyer of the Year by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.

Cable company loses bid to end overtime class action
Law 360 | October, 2013

11th Circ. revives cable installers' contractor status case
Law 360 | July, 2013

Black police officials sue city
Boston Globe| February, 2012

Police hit with bias decision; Two officers may be due 'millions'
Worcester Telegram | November, 2011

Endo Sales Reps win conditional cert. for OT suit
Law 360| June, 2011

Sebring men sue MasTec for OT pay
Tampa Bay Online | June, 2010

Contractors feeling used, abused
St. Petersburg Times | December, 2009

Independent contractor decision has lawyers wary
Mass Lawyers Weekly | December, 2008

Judge says firefighter tests biased and unfair
Globe Staff | August, 2006

Organized labor of love
Globe Staff | February, 2005


  • New York University School of Law, J.D., 1977
  • University of Pennsylvania, B.A., 1974

Professional Affiliations

  • Member, National Employment Lawyers Association
  • Member, AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee

Bar and Court Admissions

  • Member, State Bar of Massachusetts, since 1986
  • Admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court of Massachusetts and the U.S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit


Harold L. Lichten

Harold L. Lichten

tel 617-994-5800

Practice Areas

Represents labor unions and private-sector unions

Represents employees in wrongful termination, employment discrimination, and wage claims

Staff Assistant

Laura Powers


Website design by Elytra Design, 2009