• vcard
D 816.360.4249
F 816.572.5049
  • Education
    • J.D., University of Oklahoma, 1993, with distinction; Recipient, American Jurisprudence Award, Trial Techniques
    • B.A., University of Kansas, 1990
  • Court Admissions
    • United States Supreme Court, 2006
    • U.S. District Court, District of Kansas, 2000
    • U.S. District Court, Western District of Missouri, 2000
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, 2005
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Oklahoma, 1993
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Oklahoma
    • U.S. District Court, Western District of Oklahoma
    • U.S. District Court, District of Colorado, 2002
    • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit, 2002

In his litigation practice, Eric E. Packel primarily focuses on trial work involving labor and employment law.  Most recently, he has devoted a significant amount of his practice to representing employers in collective actions brought pursuant to the Fair Labor Standards Act, a topic on which he has also written and lectured.  In one such case, he was lead counsel for a company defending a 742-member collective class.


Throughout his career, Mr. Packel has represented employers in numerous discrimination lawsuits in state and federal courts in cases involving Title VII gender discrimination, race discrimination, sexual harassment, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, the Missouri Human Rights Act, the Kansas Act Against Discrimination, whistleblower claims, and workers compensation retaliation.  He has tried jury trials in five states. Mr. Packel has represented management in arbitrations before the Public Employer-Employee Relations Board.  He has also represented employers and employees in several cases involving non-compete covenants and non-solicitation agreements. 


In addition to employment claims, Mr. Packel has tried cases involving the Freedom of Speech clause of the First Amendment, negligent retention of employees, sexual assault, intentional infliction of emotional distress, products liability, and personal injury in Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma and Iowa.  He has also defended securities brokerage firms before arbitration panels of the National Association of Securities Dealers.


In 2007, Mr. Packel obtained the sixth largest jury verdict in Kansas City-area courts, based upon claims against an employee for breaching fiduciary duties and misappropriating trade secrets.
  • Wright v. American Builders and Contractors Supply Company, Inc. d/b/a ABC Supply Co. and Jason Brooks, Jury Trial, Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri, May 2014. Represented Defendants in a race discrimination lawsuit brought under the Missouri Human Rights Act brought by an African-American man who was terminated by Defendants. The jury returned a unanimous verdict in both Defendants’ favor.
  • Cox v. Kansas City Chiefs Football Club, Jury Trial, Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri, February – March 2013. Represented the Kansas City Chiefs in a month long age discrimination case in Eastern Jackson County. The jury returned a verdict in the Chiefs' favor.
  • Carnes v. FishNet Security, Inc., Jury Trial, Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri December 2012. Represented FishNet Security in a pregnancy discrimination case in Jackson County under the Missouri Human Rights Act. Received a defense verdict in one hour.
  • Burford v. Myers National Mortgage Company, Jury Trial, Circuit Court of Jackson County. Former shareholder sued National Mortgage Company for breach of fiduciary duty, breach of shareholders' agreement, and other claims. Received multi-million dollar verdicts on counterclaims for breach of Employment Agreement and violations of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act.
  • Cottrill and Combs v. MFA, Incorporated, United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. Summary Judgment affirmed by the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals in a sexual harassment case brought by two female employees on whom their supervisor “peeped” in the bathroom for five years through a peephole he created. Argued that the women never knew of the peeping until they reported their suspicion and that the women could not have subjectively believed they were being harassed since they did not know of the peeping until it was discovered.
  • Majors v. McAlester Regional Health Center Authority, Jury Trial, United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma. Chief Executive Officer was fired after 16 years as CEO after he openly criticized the Board and physicians who practiced at the Hospital, claiming the care was substandard and the Board had done nothing to improve it, over his suggestions. The CEO was discharged without a hearing in front of the Board. He brought claims of violation of First Amendment, Breach of Employment Agreement, violation of Due Process and Liberty and alleged damages of $6 million. Jury returned a unanimous verdict within 30 minutes after a week-long trial.
  • Thomas v. University of Kansas Hospital Authority, Public Employer-Employee Relations Board. Following a week long hearing, obtained an Order from the Public Employer-Employee Relations Board on Medical Center’s behalf where Claimant alleged that her employment was terminated because she was a Union Steward.
  • Jackson v. Department of Corrections, United States District Court for the District of Kansas. Eric was appointed to represent an inmate pro bono on claims of excessive force used against the inmate while waiting to obtain medications from the infirmary. The inmate refused to stand, stating he had medical restrictions from prolonged standing, and was pulled to his cell. Eric received a judgment of $10,000 for actual damages against each individual defendant and $15,000 for punitive damages. He was also awarded $40,000 in attorneys fees.
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