Joan M. Bechtold

Attorney Profile: Joan M. Bechtold

Sweeney and Bechtold, LLC

Ms. Bechtold was admitted to the Colorado Bar in 1993. She has practiced employment law since 1994, and is a founding member of Sweeney & Bechtold, LLC. During her legal career, she has successfully represented employees in numerous discrimination and wrongful discharge cases before federal and state courts and administrative agencies. Ms. Bechtold has been extensively involved in developing new legal rights and remedies for employees at the appellate level, and is a frequent author and lecturer on a variety of employment law topics. Ms. Bechtold is an AV-Preeminent rated attorney by Martindale Hubbell, reflecting that her peers have ranked her at the highest level of professional excellence.

Ms. Bechtold is a member of the National Employment Lawyer's Association, and has been a member of that organizations's National Amicus Advisory Council for a number of years. She is also a member of Colorado's Plaintiff's Employment Lawyer's Association, and serves as the Chair of its Amicus Committee. She has also served as a Vice President and Co-President for the organization, and is currently an Executive Board Member. Additionally, Ms. Bechtold is a member of the Colorado Women's Bar Association, as well as the Colorado and Denver Bar Associations. She serves on the Colorado Bar Association's Amicus Brief Committee, and is the current Co-Chair of the Colorado Bar Association's Labor and Employment Law Section. In 2010, Ms. Bechtold was selected as a Fellow of the Colorado Bar Foundation, an honor limited to five percent of Colorado lawyers, for "outstanding dedication to the welfare of the community, the traditions of the profession and the maintenance and advancement of the objectives of the Colorado Bar Association."

Ms. Bechtold received her bachelor of arts degree with distinction in English Literature and a master's of arts degree with distinction in Comparative Literature from the University of Colorado in Boulder. She received her law degree from the University of Denver College of Law in 1993, where she served as a General Editor for the University of Denver Law Review. She graduated first in her law school class, and was invited into the honorary legal society, Order of St. Ives. She was also recognized as the National Association of Women Lawyers Outstanding Graduate for her graduating class. After graduating from law school, Ms. Bechtold served as a law clerk to the Honorable Mary J. Mullarkey, Chief Justice, Colorado Supreme Court.

Books and Articles

  • Family Responsibilities Discrimination, EMPLOYEE RIGHTS LITIGATION: PLEADING AND PRACTICE (December 15, 2009 Supp).
  • Co-author of Employment at Will and Contract and Promissory Estoppel Claims, THE PRACTITIONER'S GUIDE TO COLORADO EMPLOYMENT LAW (2d ed. 2008).
  • Co-author of New Age Employee Compensation Issues, COLORADO LAWYER, June 2000.
  • Intentional Torts and Workers' Compensation Exclusivity in Sexual Harassment Cases, TRIAL TALK, June 2000.
  • Co-author of Enforcing Oral Promises of Job Security in Colorado, TRIAL TALK, June 1996.

Lectures

  • "Understanding Your Legal Rights in the Workplace," MS in the Workplace Seminar, Rocky Mountain MS Center (September 2010).
  • "2010 Case Law and Legislative Update," Plaintiffs' Employment Lawyers’ Association (Aug. 2010).
  • "Case Law and Legislative Update," Colorado Employment Law Conference, CLE in Colorado Inc. (May 2010).
  • "Colorado State Employment & Labor Law Developments," 2009 Labor and Employment Law Conference, LERA Rocky Mountain Chapter (Oct. 2009).
  • "2009 Case Law and Legislative Update," Plaintiffs' Employment Lawyers' Association (Aug. 2009).
  • "Americans with Disabilities Act...A New Frontier: Litigating Disability Claims Under the ADA Amendments Act of 2008," Colorado Trial Lawyers Association Annual Convention (Aug. 2009).
  • "How Much is Enough? The Evolution and Devolution of the Harassment and Hostile Work Environment Threshold," National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Convention (June 2009).
  • "2009 Case Law and Legislative Update," Colorado Employment Law Conference, CLE in Colorado, Inc. (May 2009).
  • "Recent Developments in Harassment Cases," CLE in Colorado, Inc. (Sept. 2008).
  • "2008 Case Law and Legislative Update," Plaintiffs' Employment Lawyers' Association (Aug. 2008).
  • "Evidentiary Law in Employment Cases," 26th Annual Multi-State Labor & Employment Law Seminar (June 2008).
  • "Emerging Claims Involving Sex-Based Stereotyping in the Workplace," National Employment Lawyers Association Annual Convention (June 2008).
  • "FMLA - Statutory Changes and Proposed Regulations," Employment Law: Hot Topics and Core Skills, CLE in Colorado, Inc. (May 2008).
  • "Family and Medical Leave Act Issues," Colorado Employment Law Conference, CLE in Colorado Inc. (Feb. 2008).
  • "2007 Case Law and Legislative Update," Plaintiffs' Employment Lawyers' Association (Aug. 2007).
  • "Sex-Based Stereotyping Claims in the Workplace," Colorado Women's Bar Association Annual Convention (May 2007).
  • "The Year in Review: A Review of Recent Employment Cases and Developments," CLE in Colorado, Inc. (October 2006).
  • "2006 Case Law Update," Plaintiffs' Employment Lawyers' Association (Aug. 2006).
  • "The Year in Review: A Review of Recent Employment Cases and Developments," Colorado Trial Lawyers Association Annual Convention (June 2006).
  • "The Year in Review: A Review of Recent Employment Cases and Developments," Current Legal and Practical Issues in Employment Law, Colorado Trial Lawyers Association (Nov. 2005).
  • "2005 Case Law and Legislative Update," CLE in Colorado, Inc. (Oct. 2005).
  • "2005 Case Law and Legislative Update," Plaintiffs' Employment Lawyers' Association (Sept. 2005).
  • "2004 Case Law Update," CLE in Colorado, Inc. (Oct. 2004).
  • "Hostile Work Environment-More Than Sexual Harassment," EEOC Technical Assistance Program Seminar (Sept. 2004).
  • "2004 Case Law Update," Plaintiffs' Employment Lawyers' Association (April 2004).
  • "2003 Case Law and Legislative Update," CLE in Colorado, Inc. (Oct. 2003).
  • "Employment Law Update: What's New in 2002?" CLE in Colorado, Inc. (Oct. 2002).
  • "Ten Common Mistakes Made in Workplace Investigations - The Plaintiff’s Perspective," CLE in Colorado, Inc. (Mar. 2001).
  • "Recent Developments in Sexual Harassment Law," Colorado Trial Lawyers Association Annual Convention (Aug. 2000).
  • "Update on Colorado Tort Law," CLE in Colorado, Inc. (May 2000).
  • "Emerging Trends in Colorado Tort Law," CLE in Colorado Inc. (Mar. 2000).
  • "Strategies for Winning Employment Cases Before and After a Law Suit is Filed," Colorado Trial Lawyers Association (1999).
  • "Sex Discrimination-Beyond Sexual Harassment," Employment Law Institute Fall Workplace Law Seminar (Oct.1999).
  • "Sexual Harassment Law After Ellerth and Faragher," Colorado Trial Lawyers Association (Oct. 1998).