Solicitors in Westminster, London
Employment Law & HR Support for Employers
Our employment team, based in Westminster, provides strategic and practical employment law advice and HR advice to business clients. Our specialists are on hand to partner clients and assist them achieving their employment aims. We provide swift, decisive commercial advice based on the type of the business, the sector and the client's needs.
Whether advising on regulatory and compliance issues, drafting contracts and policies or defending the client in an Employment Tribunal claim, our employment team is an experienced and available resource. We carry out contentious and non-contentious work for employers and employees and work with People Directors and HR professionals at all stages from recruitment to the end of the employment relationship.
Our employment lawyers also provide corporate support on commercial transactions including advising on TUPE situations and assisting with due diligence and employment provisions in share purchase agreements.
Speak to our employment law solicitors in Westminster, London
Call our employment lawyers in London now on 020 7222 5381 or use the contact form above and we will get back to you.
Matters our employment law and HR solicitors can assist with
We advise on:
- Policies and Procedures
- HR support - policies, disciplinary & grievance
- Recruitment, contracts and service agreements
- Dismissal & discrimination
- Employment tribunals
- Settlement agreements
- Occupational personal injury
- Workplace investigations
- Employment status
- Employee benefits and share incentive schemes
- Corporate support in commercial transactions
Find out more about our specific areas of employment law & HR expertise
Employment policies and procedures
Employment law is constantly evolving. Legislative changes or Tribunal decisions have implications for employment contracts, staff handbooks, policies and procedures. Our employment team keeps abreast of all developments to ensure we are well placed to give up to date advice reflecting best practice. Regularly we are asked by employer clients to:
- Review and refresh their standard contracts
- Draft bespoke executive contracts
- Prepare or update staff handbooks, disciplinary policies and grievance policies
- Ensure practices and policies are GDPR compliant
- Advise on flexible working and home-working policies
- Other policies we regularly provide are:
- equal opportunities policies,
- maternity, adoption, parental leave and paternity leave policies
- Data protection policies
- Health & safety policies
- Social media usage
By taking a pro-active approach and revising and refreshing the suite of policies more often than the employer might feel is necessary, it should save time and costs in the long run and reduce the chances of claims from employees.
Having a clear set of policy documents which are easily understood and not excessive sets the right tone for the employment relationship and allows employees to understand their rights and entitlements.
For more information please see our employment law policies and procedures page.
Discrimination & the Equality Act
It is crucial for employers that their policies are compliant with the latest discrimination legislation as developed via case law since the Equality Act 2010. Our employment team provides specialist advice on discrimination issues and how to minimise the chances of having to defend such claims.
Discrimination comes in many forms. Direct discrimination is widely understood by employers and employees. Indirect discrimination is less well understood yet more likely to occur and employers must be aware of what it is and how to ensure their practices and policies do not discriminate against groups with protected characteristics.
Our lawyers are experienced in acting for both employers and employees in both discrimination claims and workplace disputes where there is an underlying allegation of discrimination. We are well placed to advise employer clients on their written policies as well as their customs and practices. We understand that it is one thing to have an equal opportunities policy and a suite of policies that are non-discriminatory, but it is another thing to ensure that employees at all levels of an organisation recognise bullying, harassment and discrimination and understand their role in preventing it. Our lawyers provide practical training for clients on all discrimination related issues.
Our employment team regularly advises on:
- Race discrimination claims
- Sex discrimination claims
- Disability discrimination claims
- Claims arising out of other protected characteristics
Redundancies, restructures & TUPE
The need to reduce headcount can be one of the most difficult processes for HR professionals. Is there a genuine redundancy situation or is this a reorganisation or even a disguised capability issue is a question that needs to be understood and answered at the outset as this helps determine the approach the employer should take. Given a significant proportion of employees being made redundant will exercise their right to appeal and may go further by claiming unfair dismissal, the employer needs to know it is on solid ground.
Our employment lawyers specialise in guiding businesses and HR processes through redundancy and restructuring processes. We will advise on process including collective or individual consultations as applicable. When making more than 20 employees redundant within a 90-day period, a statutory consultation process must be followed. Where the number of employees at risk of redundancy is fewer, individual consultation is required and a fair and objective selection process must be carried out.
Our employment specialists will:
- Discuss redundancy and reorganisation aims and help you formulate a legally sound strategy and timescale
- Advise on collective and individual consultation requirements
- Provide guidance on identifying 'at risk' pools and applying fair selection criteria
- Assist with 'at risk' and termination letters and redundancy calculations
- Prepare settlement agreements where required
We provide TUPE advice to employers. Whether as corporate support on a business transfer, standalone TUPE advice in a transfer of undertaking or outsourcing and insourcing situations, our employment lawyers are experienced at providing clear advice on a complex piece of legislation. Our TUPE knowledge is especially prevalent in the education and charity sectors where clients are either procuring or tendering for services.
Stress at work
Stress at work is a particular specialism for our employment lawyers. Due to our mixed practice acting for employees as well as employers, we are able assess factual scenarios and provide balanced, judgement-based advice.
All employers want a physically and mentally fit and healthy workforce. Some employers may only pay lip service to looking after their employees' mental well-being whereas most will genuinely mean it and be prepared to take positive action to ensure it. We provide advice to HR professionals on policies and practices designed to promote well-being and how to spot and avoid issues like burn-out and work-related stress.
The reality is that most employers will need legal advice at the point which a stress at work claim begins to germinate. Doctors notes recording 'stress and anxiety' are easy to obtain and are commonplace. Whilst for the vast majority of employees such a diagnosis is right and proper and a period of time off is necessary and proportionate, 'getting signed off with stress' is not an uncommon tactic of employees embroiled in a workplace dispute or seeking to engineer an exit.
Our employment lawyers have significant experience in bringing and defending occupational stress personal injury claims. We advise employers on where the threshold for psychiatric harm lies, their duty of care and how to act once they are on notice that an employee may suffer a personal injury. Because of our in depth understanding of the disability discrimination and personal injury landscape around stress at work claims, we are well placed to provide robust advice for employers who are not at fault despite what the employee is alleging.
We understand that providing employment law advice is one thing but that it is the day to day HR support that can be just as valuable. For many years our lawyers have been working alongside HR advisers across all our specialist sectors.
By getting HR right, employers enable their workforce to carry out their work in a supportive environment and the chances of employment disputes occurring are substantially reduced.
Our employment team works with HR professionals on:
- Managing existing employees including quick response advice to ad hoc issues
- Helping plan change such as a restructuring exercise
- Guiding or carrying out workplace investigations
- Providing contracts, policies and procedures
- Joint training sessions and webinars
Employment dispute resolution
Our employment team represents employers at any level of dispute from the informal grievance through to Employment Tribunal and High Court claims.
No matter how good the HR has been or how scrupulous the employer has been, employment claims are a fact of life for employers at some stage. It is usually possible to spot a scenario likely to develop into a dispute at an early stage. We pride ourselves in providing decisive and proportionate advice to employers according to their end goal which might be to de-escalate a brewing situation or, if the facts warrant it, to effect a snappy termination.
We have extensive experience in preparing and negotiating settlement agreements. As well as providing advice on the legal points, our experience enables us to offer our judgement on the commercial terms too based on our experience of acting for employees and employers at all levels and across a variety of sectors.
Speak to our employment law solicitors in Westminster, London
Call our lawyers in London now on 020 7222 5381 or use the contact form above and we will get back to you.
- Ed Henderson