E-Mail Paul Harris
I am Paul Harris and I am proud to have represented workers ever since
I graduated from law school. I come from a small town in the Texas Panhandle
called Borger. I earned my bachelor’s degree in English, with Honors,
from the University of Texas-Austin. As a law student at the University
of Houston Law Center, I received the Yale Rosenberg Memorial Award for
writing and served as a law clerk for the Houston office of Advocacy,
Inc., (currently known as Disability Rights Texas), a federally created
nonprofit that protects the legal rights of individuals with disabilities.
In my final year of law school, I became a clerk for a prominent employment
law firm here in Houston, Butler & Harris. After graduating law school,
I became an associate at Butler & Harris, where I stayed for 12 years.
While at Butler & Harris, I worked on several, groundbreaking cases,
many of which were against local governments and various federal agencies.
We helped overturn a blanket ban on individuals with diabetes that kept
them from serving the State Department in the Foreign Service. We won
a gender discrimination, pattern-and-practice trial against the City of
Beaumont and its Police Department, achieving justice for our client who
worked for so long to become a Detective. We won two disability discrimination
trials against the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI): one on behalf
of a person with diabetes who was wrongfully rejected as a Special Agent,
and one for a person who went on to become the first FBI Special Agent
with a prosthetic hand.
Along the way, I have represented individuals in almost every field of
work and almost any place on the hierarchy; from police officers and municipal
employees to oil and gas executives, nurses, restaurant workers, and beverage
My work for my clients takes on many different forms. I advise people about
contract negotiations and severance agreements. I have represented clients
in matters before both state and federal courts in Houston. I have extensive
experience assisting clients through internal grievance processes. I have
represented numerous local and federal governmental employees, including
employees of the City of Houston, in litigation and before the Merit Systems
Protection Board. I have also successfully represented numerous clients
and small businesses with claims for Unemployment Benefits through the
Texas Workforce Commission.
I am admitted to practice law in the United States Court of Appeals for
the Fifth Circuit, the United States District Court for the Eastern and
Southern District of Texas, and all Texas state courts. I handle cases
under various state and federal laws, including Title VII, the Americans
with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), the Rehabilitation Act (Section
504), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”), the
Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”), the Texas Commission
on Human Rights Act, and Texas laws that prohibit retaliation against
daycare workers and nursing home workers.
I served as the President of the Houston Chapter of the National Employment
Lawyers Association, where I helped organize and emcee monthly educational
luncheons for local plaintiff’s employment lawyers. I am a member
of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of Texas and
the Labor and Employment Law Section of the Houston Bar Association. I
am a member of the Texas Employment Lawyers Association (TELA), founded
in part by my former boss, Margaret Harris, as well as the National Employment
Lawyers Association (NELA).
I have conducted training sessions for private sector companies, and I
am a regular guest speaker at the University of Houston-Downtown’s
Paralegal Certificate Program. I enjoy speaking at nearby schools on the
importance of jury duty as part of the Houston Bar Association’s
Please contact Shellist Lazarz Slobin if you have questions or are in need
of legal advice. I look forward to seeing if I can be of assistance to you.