Monica Penichet-Coates

Areas of Practice
  • Labor & Employment
  • Prevailing Wage
  • Business Litigation
  • Construction Litigation

Southwestern University School of Law, J.D., 1998; Loyola Marymount University, B.A., 1994

Languages Spoken
  • English
  • Spanish

Los Angeles Office


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Monica Penichet-Coates is a senior associate in LHDK&W’s Los Angeles Office and represents management and employer organizations in all aspects of day-to-day employment law issues, including effective human resources policies and compliance with federal and state laws, including wage and hour issues, employment discrimination, disability and family/medical leave laws, and discipline and termination processes. Ms. Penichet-Coates also prepares and revises employee handbooks and other employment-related documents and agreements.  She also conducts and assists with employer training seminars and frequently counsels clients regarding best employment practices and procedures for their businesses.

Ms. Penichet-Coates’ employment defense litigation practice includes wage and hour claims, employment discrimination, workplace harassment, retaliation, and wrongful termination.  She also assists clients in work place investigations, including employment counseling and training.  Ms. Penichet-Coates also represents clients in administrative proceedings before various state agencies, such as the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) - Division of Labor Standards and Enforcement (DLSE)/California Labor Commissioner’s Office and the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) concerning wage and hour claims, misclassification issues, shift differential matters, fringe benefit contributions, and general labor and employment disputes. 

Prior to joining LHDK&W, Ms. Penichet-Coates represented public entities, including school and community college districts, regarding various labor and employment litigation matters and compliance and enforcement of California’s prevailing wage laws.  She successfully represented clients before administrative agencies and personnel commissions primarily handling prevailing wage enforcement cases, defending against unfair labor charges, and enforcing disciplinary matters.

Ms. Penichet-Coates’ previous legal experience also includes a wide variety of general business and construction litigation matters regarding multi-tier contractors and sureties for public works projects in California.

Ms. Penichet-Coates has presented to various school districts as part of the California Adequate School Housing (CASH) Network Regional Workshops concerning new legislation relating to public works projects and prevailing wage requirements. 

A graduate of Southwestern University School of Law and Loyola Marymount University, she is admitted to practice law in the State of California.  Ms. Penichet-Coates is also a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Section and enjoys pro bono work as an Attorney Advocate with the Alliance for Children’s Rights.  She is fluent in Spanish.