As a team of highly experienced employment law specialists, we provide practical and commercial solutions to a wide range of businesses, from PLC's to professional partnerships (such as law firms and medical practices). Our expertise also includes schools, charities and nursing homes. It may be a major reorganisation, introduction of an incentive scheme, management training or dealing with a difficult individual. We also provide an in house employment law service. All of us have a wealth of experience in City or major London legal practices. Our rates are competitive, our solutions bespoke for your business and our advice first class.
Case studies for businesses
View our case studies
Do you hire temporary staff through an agency? Do you know what your obligations are? This area is complex. We can help guide you through the minefield.
We are able to help with whatever matters you may face on a day to day basis, such as: holiday questions, dealing with long term sickness issues, misconduct, performance management, redundancy and reorganisation programmes. We are here at the end of a phone. Speak to us for monthly advice packages.
Are you concerned about offering benefits to employees because of the cost implications? Or worried about offering a service but then having to withdraw it?
Are your employees raising questions concerning their rights to bonuses? We can help protect the Company and advise you on the Do’s and Don’ts with regard to bonuses and help defend you against disputes relating to a payment of a bonus.
We aim first to help you avoid any bullying or harassment problems by clear practical advice at an early stage, training and policies. As an employer you may be responsible for your employees’ bullying actions or harassment towards another employee. If you don’t take appropriate action, you may face a constructive dismissal claim or a discrimination claim in relation to harassment. Our aim is first to prevent such problems but if they do arise, find an early resolution.
Do you have a troublesome employee? If you have a conduct issue with an employee, care needs to be taken to follow the correct procedure otherwise you could find the business facing a costly employment tribunal claim. We are experienced in guiding employers through the whole process and from start to finish and will give you the support that enables you to proceed with confidence. Disciplinary matters can take up a lot of management time and early advice can help you deal with the problem more efficiently and effectively.
Have employees complained of less favourable treatment because of their sex, age, religion, disability or race, for example?
If so, you need to deal with any workplaces issues promptly, fairly and appropriately to avoid matters escalating. We understand how damaging potential discrimination claims can be. We will help your company through the process to achieve a solution.
We offer mediation as a possible first step in a workplace dispute. It is an effective alternative means of resolving complaints and managing change.
Mediation has been described as a ‘Win Win’. We are very conscious of the costs involved in any legal action, and there are potentially huge savings to be made by using workplace mediation, primarily by saving on management time and short cutting internal grievance procedures or employment tribunal claims.
Mediation is fast and cost effective: court actions are lengthy and expensive. Commercial and workplace mediation is usually completed in a day, sometimes two.
Mediation is successful: most mediations result in a settlement on the day or very shortly thereafter.
Mediation is confidential and without prejudice: nothing said in the mediation is admissible as evidence in court.
Mediation is low risk: an offer made during the mediation can be withdrawn before agreement is reached so there is nothing to lose in trying to reach a solution.
Mediation is informal and flexible: the mediation process is tailored to suit your needs. The Mediator is neutral and allows the participants to stand back and reassess their respective positions.
Mediation maintains business relationships: successful mediation results in an agreement acceptable to all parties, as opposed to a court judgment which is imposed on the parties. Arriving at a settlement through mediation is far more likely to preserve relationships and allow the parties to move on effectively.
Mediation offers a variety of settlement options: the mediation agreement or settlement agreement usually involves financial payments from one party to the other but can also include other options that the parties agree through the Mediator. The range of settlement options is far wider than those available in litigation. Once settlement is reached, agreed and signed, it can be incorporated into a legal settlement by the lawyers.
In summary, mediation generates understanding, removes fear and focuses on the future.
CASE STUDIES – MEDIATION
These can become the focus when a relationship starts to go wrong – if corners have been cut at the beginning or the contract has not been updated, this can cause problems to arise. We recognise that the pressures of running the business do not always leave you with sufficient time, so let us help you prevent difficulties arising. We will deal with any issues on existing contracts or draw up new contracts to protect your business. We can draft individually tailored contracts or provide standard terms of employment as well as staff handbooks and specific employment policies and procedures. Varying contractual terms of employment can be a tricky process and we can guide you through this.
Have you received a claim from an employee or ex-employee? There are strict time limits for responding to a cIaim and it is vital that that these time limits are met. We have extensive experience of dealing with a whole range of employment tribunal claims and will advise you on the possible outcome and costs of any claim and consider with you the implications of any possible settlement.
We know that receiving a claim can be very worrying and fighting it can be costly and time consuming. We will be very clear with you about the possible costs and update you regularly so that you can manage your costs effectively.
Grievances can be a very time consuming and disruptive process for management. It is important for an employer to have clear policies and procedures and we can steer you through the process with the least possible difficulty. We have helped companies through many difficult situations; good strategic and practical advice is key.
It can be a minefield dealing with maternity issues and you need to ensure you minimise the risk of a discrimination claim. How can you work through a reorganisation or redundancy involving someone on or recently returned from maternity leave? Can you dismiss someone who’s pregnant? Are you up to speed on paternity rights? We can also help with flexible working requests and have suitable policies.
Mediation is a flexible and common sense approach to conflict resolution that helps those involved in a dispute to arrive at their own workable solution. The mediator is an impartial and experienced third party who facilitates discussion and enables dialogue. Mediation focuses on how the parties in dispute move forward rather than on apportioning blame for what has happened in the past.
View full details on our Mediation Service
As an employer you must treat part time workers no less favourably than full timers, unless you have good reason. We can carry out a health check to minimise your risk here. We can also support and guide you in dealing with requests from your staff to move to part time working.
Advice on LLP and partnership agreements, formations, conversions of companies and partnerships to LLPs
- The duty of good faith
- Discrimination issues
- Remuneration structures
You need to protect your business in the event of someone leaving and poaching your clients or staff, using confidential information or setting up in competition. Too wide and they won’t be enforceable. We can help in drafting suitable restrictions.
Did you know that you can monitor your employees internet usage and private emails?
Come and talk to us about putting a policy in place to achieve this.
There are many potential pitfalls for an employer in recruiting a new employee and it is vital that an employer is aware of these. We can advise on best practice to enable you through training and creation of a paper trail to avoid these pitfalls as far as possible. Unfortunately for employers, each stage of the recruitment process from the job description, to the interview process to the job offer itself can lead to problems and potential claims such as discrimination and data protection. We are called on to advise on all stages and we provide practical and comprehensive advice to enable employers to proceed with confidence.
Do you need to carry out a reorganisation or redundancies? You want clear, comprehensive and practical advice on how to conduct a redundancy process fairly, with minimal disruption and effect on morale for your staff. We are experienced in dealing with redundancies from the small to large scale, needing collective consultation. We guide you through each step and provide all necessary documentation. If you need Settlement Agreements for peace of mind, we can draft these for you.
If you need to carry out a reorganisation and change job roles or reporting lines, we can help in giving you a clear procedure to use, with suitable checklists and documents to make the process as pain free as possible, minimising business disruption.
Are you wanting to get rid of the senior employees who are expensive to the business? Are you concerned about how to raise discussions about leaving? We can help you through the relevant processes and provide you with an analysis of the options and risks you have if you decide to terminate contracts of employment in such circumstances.
Special considerations apply when you are appointing a senior executive and in particular if they are to be a director of the company, the service agreement will need to contain tailored clauses. At the other end of the employment cycle, if you wish to dismiss a senior executive then again different considerations apply than with a more junior employee – the need for speed and minimal disruption to the business may outweigh the requirement to comply with good employment practice. In these circumstances, having practical advice to achieve an agreed departure can be key. We have experience in providing strategic advice in these situations and approaching the issues on a commercial basis.
If you wish to terminate the employment of an employee, a settlement agreement can be a useful tool for ensuring an orderly exit. We can prepare and negotiate the agreement for you and advise you on how best to protect your business.
We regularly advise employers on these agreements and have been included on a number of panels put forward to employees of major UK based companies carrying out large-scale redundancy programmes.
Tweeting, Facebook, Linked In, YouTube, MySpace, blogs - the list goes on. Are you concerned about damage to the company’s reputation? What can you do about employees posting social media comments? Do you know whether you are allowed to monitor your employees? Are your employees aware of the company’s data protection obligations? We can help you put in place clear and effective policies in all these areas and assist you in any action you may need to take.
We have a user-friendly staff handbook. You can pick and choose which policies you want, or we offer a starter handbook covering the basics. It covers everything you need, including grievances, disciplinary and performance policies, expenses, sickness absence and family friendly procedures. Having the policies in place gives managers and staff a fair framework for addressing issues
The loss of a team can cause significant damage to your business, with you losing your skill base and/or the threat of competition, and your existing customers being targeted. What steps can you take to protect yourself? Or maybe you are the new employer, with a new team that has joined you: what are your risks and what practical steps should you take to minimise your exposure?
We help train your managers in how to deal with performance and conduct issues, to achieve the best results and minimise the risk of an unfair dismissal or discrimination claim. Recruitment procedures are also an area we find help is valuable: all steps from placing the advertisement to offering the job. Our aim is to support your business to get the best from your staff and management.
Do you want to transfer a business? Are you aware of the strict procedure you need to follow and the risk of claims in the employment tribunal if you do not? The regulations can also apply to outsourcing and service provider arrangements. We can help you plan the whole process and help ensure that you avoid the costly penalties that can arise as well as automatic unfair dismissal claims for TUPE related dismissals. TUPE is a very complex area, which requires specialist advice - we can provide this.
Have you received a claim from an ex-employee for unfair dismissal? Are you concerned that a dismissal will lead to a claim? We advise regularly on disciplinary and performance management processes leading to termination and will guide you through implementing a fair process. These can be time consuming and trying times for HR and management and having expert advice will help to ensure the process runs as efficiently and smoothly as possible. We will always take you through the process and advise as to the risks attached so that you are fully informed to take the most appropriate decisions.
Are you worried that your employees might raise claims against you for possible wrongdoing in the work place or possible breaches of legislation? If so, you can put processes in place to provide a mechanism for encouraging employees to deal with such issues internally.
What Others Are Saying
"Belinda was at all times responsive and astute in the handling of my case. SW19Lawyers know their subject matter well and provided a very friendly and supportive service."
[Magic Circle Partner]
“I have worked with SW19 who have always been incredibly dedicated and focused on the task in hand. They provide pragmatic and commercial advice notwithstanding the legal complexities. I highly value their high standard of client service and concern for their clients’ interests and I positively recommend them to others.”
"Highly recommended and they more than lived up to expectations. They were unerringly professional, spot on with tactics, very client focused and a pleasure to work with. I would be more than happy to recommend SW19Lawyers."
[Senior executive in the insurance industry]
"I needed a good employment lawyer as a matter of urgency. At a time when I was upset, stressed and unsure of my rights, I found SW19Lawyers immensely helpful. They were easy to talk to, understanding, clearly knowledgeable and very experienced. Professional but approachable, they made a difficult time easier for me. Thanks SW19Lawyers. I have already recommended you to others".
"Thank you for your support. You are our go to lawyers when required. I am very happy with everything you have done for us and know that will continue in the future." [client in the fashion industry]
"In a world of ever increasing complexity for employers, it's good to know Belinda has got the detail covered!" [Wealth management firm founder]