Employment Law Advice

Our Approach & Track Record

GQ|Littler is the leading employment law firm for employers in the UK and Ireland. We offer risk-based advice and litigation services on employment, immigration, employee tax and incentives issues. We work globally as part of Littler, the world’s largest employment law firm with more than 1,800 lawyers practising across 30 countries in over 100 offices.

Our team can advise on the full range of employment law issues from difficult day-to-day issues to highly complex business restructures.

We offer a practical service to address the frustrations businesses often experience when they get discursive and overly-academic legal advice without any clear recommendations.

What makes us different:

  • We do not sit on the fence
  • Risk management and psychology underpin our approach 
  • We are a truly global employment boutique 

In the real world, we think that employment law issues have three equally important elements:

We factor all these elements into our thinking to deliver holistic, user-friendly advice that is delivered in an in-house style and focused on achieving your desired outcome. This is what “commercial advice” means to us.

Risk management is fundamental to this approach - we invest time in understanding each client’s HR risk profile and culture and we have developed our own online HR Risk Indicator, which provides an immediate snapshot of an organisation’s risk appetite and benchmarks how different decision-makers understand the organisation’s approach to HR risk.

Our Team's Experience

Business Change and Projects

Our lawyers have advised on the people aspects of some of the most challenging and complex issues and projects, including:

  • The winding down of Lehman Brothers following its collapse in 2008.
  • The integration of ABN AMRO into RBS across 53 countries and the simultaneous restructuring.
  • The implementation by an AIM listed global technology company of a new global strategy, resulting in a series of overlapping redundancy exercises in multiple countries.
  • The spin-out (and proposed, separate NYSE listing) of a division of a global healthcare company across thirteen EU jurisdictions as well as Australia and New Zealand.
  • Managing all the employment aspects of the global restructure of a major international healthcare company in over 40 countries in Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
  • Advising an international technology business on the establishment of European Works Councils in seven European countries and managing the process to achieve a favourable outcome.

Sensitive Staff Issues

We are adept at helping businesses to resolve difficult staffing issues. Our experience includes:

  • Advising a bank on the poaching of a valuable team by a former senior manager who had signed a settlement agreement with the company, restating his post-termination restrictions, only a few months previously. Using the threat of High Court action, we negotiated a favourable settlement.
  • Advising a financial institution and achieving a low value settlement in relation to a poorly-performing employee who was on long-term sick leave for stress and who had raised a grievance alleging bullying, harassment, discrimination, victimisation and intimidation.
  • Advising a household name business in relation to a sexual assault allegation made against its founder and reaching an amicable resolution.

Senior Executive Issues

Issues relating to senior executives are particularly sensitive. Our team has extensive experience including:

  • Advising a global IT company on the hiring of a senior executive from a competitor, managing litigation over non-competes and negotiating a favourable settlement.
  • Advising an AIM listed company on the dismissal of its CEO and HR Director.
  • Advising an AIM listed company on the dismissal of a director working in the US.
  • Advising a company on a new incentive scheme and executive service agreements for the senior management team as part of a planned reverse takeover.
  • Negotiating a dual US/UK service agreement for an AIM listed company’s new CEO.
  • Assisting a FTSE company with its directors remuneration report.

Workforce Policy

Advising businesses on general employment law developments and periodic review of core employment documentation (including handbooks and contracts) is a core part of our service. Recent experience includes:

  • Reviewing family-friendly policies to ensure that they deal with rules allowing parents to share 52 weeks’ shared parental leave between them.
  • Reviewing holiday pay arrangements to assess the risk and potential liability of claims following the recent holiday pay caselaw.
  • Amending contractual clauses and policies on remuneration for financial services clients to ensure compliance with pay regulation.
  • Drafting a suite of employment documentation for a client who required “employee friendly” agreements.
  • Advising a challenger bank on a new suite of risk-based employment documentation, including bespoke SMR-compliant employment contracts and policy documentation, and working on an ongoing retainer to advise the bank on a range of HR issues.

What Others Say:

"I have worked with Philip Cameron and Ben Smith for over a year now, on two rounds of redundancies, a tribunal claim and other sensitive cases involving performance and disciplinary action. As the HRBP for employees in six countries, it is difficult to stay abreast of employment laws, so I find the support I get from Philip, Ben and GQ|Littler overall invaluable."

Nikki Bellofiore, HR Business Partner - Buzzfeed Inc.

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