James C. Hetlage

Attorney at Law

James C. Hetlage

James C. Hetlage is an experienced employment attorney, litigator, and municipal attorney. He represents government and private-sector employers before state and federal administrative agencies, trial courts and appellate courts. Mr. Hetlage is experienced in resolving employment discrimination claims and other labor and employment disputes in court and through mediation and arbitration. He has addressed the impact of social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter for employers, and has counseled employers on proper means for avoiding discrimination and harassment claims.

Mr. Hetlage serves as the City Attorney for Glendale, MO and Wentzville, MO. In that capacity, Mr. Hetlage addresses substantially all of the legal needs of these cities, including preparation and review of ordinances and contracts, analysis of zoning and land use issues, Sunshine Law requests, and personnel matters.

Mr. Hetlage partners with his employer and municipal clients to identify ways to avoid risk and keep his clients out of the courtroom. Mr. Hetlage provides clients with counseling and guidance on drafting and implementing ordinances, employment policies and on Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), wage and hour, and discrimination compliance issues. In addition, he handles litigation involving commercial disputes including breach of contract, condemnation, construction, and real estate matters.

Jim has been selected for inclusion in Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers (Employment & Labor) in multiple years, most recently in 2018, and has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America©  in multiple years, most recently in 2019, for his work in Employment Law – Management. Jim is also peer rated AV® PreeminentTM with Martindale Hubbell. He earned his J.D. from Washington University School of Law.

Representative Clients

  • The Bi-State Development Agency of the Missouri-Illinois Metropolitan District (Metro)
  • City of Glendale
  • City of Wentzville
  • St. Louis Public Library

Representative Cases or Transactions

  • Clark v. St. Louis Public Schools, 2006 WL 208600, E.D. Mo.
  • Wade-Lemee v. Board of Education, 2005 WL 2333890, E.D. Mo.,
  • Davis v. Hammonds, 103 Fed. Appx. 51 (8th Cir.)
  • Darst Webbe Tenant Association Bd. v. St. Louis Housing Authority, 202 F.Supp.2d 938 (E.D. Mo.)
  • City of Ladue v. Rafaeli, 14 S.W.3d 258 (Mo. App. E.D.)
  • Cross v. Board of Education of the City of St. Louis, 223 F.3d. 867 (8th Cir.)
  • Wack v. Board of Education of the City of St. Louis, 25 S.W.3d 689 (Mo. App. E.D.)
  • FDIC v. Davis, 167 F.3d 1199 (8th Cir.)
  • Miles v. Board of Education of the City of St. Louis, 989 F. Supp. 1225 (E.D. Mo.)
  • C.F.S. v. Mahan, 943 S.W.2d 615 (Mo. App. E.D.)

Recent Publications or News

  • “Fair Labor Standards Act for Public Employers,” Missouri School Boards Association Annual Conference, October 2013
  • “FMLA UPDATE: New Regulations, New Rules,” Missouri Association of School Business Officials Conference, April 2010
  • “Social Networking Websites in the Workplace; What’s Legal’ What’s Not,” Missouri School Boards’ Association Annual Conference, October 2009
  • “Employment Laws for Missouri School Districts,” Missouri Association of School Business Officials Conference, April 2007
  • “Selecting and Terminating Employees,” NBI Seminar, January 2003
  • “Drug Testing of Private and Public Employees,” Human Resources Management Association of St. Louis, October 2002
  • “Recent Developments in ADA and FMLA,” Hot Topics in School Law Seminar, Lorman, 2001

Community Service & Awards

  • Martindale-Hubbell, AV® PreeminentTM Peer Review Rating
  • The Best Lawyers in America® 2015-Present
    Employment Law – Management
  • Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers, 2009-Present
  • Human Resource Management Association of St. Louis, 2002-Present
    Vice President – Administration, 2008-2010
  • Washington University School of Law, Alumni Executive Committee, 2002-2008
  • National Kidney Foundation of Eastern Missouri and Metro East, Inc.
    Board of Directors, 1990-1995
  • Webster Child Care Center
    Board of Directors, 1995-1998

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