Corporate & Business
36 Commercial’s employment law specialists have extensive advisory and advocacy experience. Our team represents all forms of business and corporate clients involved in disputes with employees, either through referrals from solicitors or via the Direct Public Access scheme.
Our core areas of experience include the following areas: business transfers (TUPE), civil employment disputes (including those involving issues such as confidential information and database rights; gardening leave; and injunctive relief and other interim remedies), whistleblowing, unfair dismissal, and discrimination.
Members of our employment team represent a variety of businesses in courts and tribunals, from sole traders and small family businesses with one or two staff members only at one end of the scale to major UK supermarkets, large companies and local government authorities at the other end.
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Systems and Procedures
Our team provides advice and representation with regards to the documentation, policies, contracts and template letters that businesses may require to function efficiently. We provide effective advisory services in relation to clients’ internal systems and procedures.
Grievance and Disciplinary Procedures
Our team members have assisted businesses by conducting internal disciplinary interviews and hearings, preparing reports and conducting disciplinary meetings, including those leading to dismissal and/or any subsequent internal appeals. Our knowledge of appropriate internal systems has been gained both from our work within business organisations and in relation to the many hundreds of Employment Tribunal hearings our Members collectively have conducted over the years.
We advise on all aspects of employment law, maintaining a practical and commercial approach. We are able to provide an objective, external evaluation of the legal position arising out of any action taken (or being considered) by our business clients against their employees or former employees, or any claims brought or threatened by employees or former employees.
Our Members have market-leading trial advocacy skills. We regularly represent employers before Employment Tribunals in claims of harassment, whistleblowing, discrimination, victimisation, unlawful deduction of wages and unfair dismissal. We also represent employers as claimants in actions against employees for injunctive relief and for damages for breach (e.g. of restrictive covenants and for the dissemination of confidential information).
Our employment barristers provide advice and representation on the employment aspects of business sales and outsourcing transactions. Members of the practice group have considerable experience in litigating complicated points of law. Our team has developed considerable expertise in dealing with business reorganisations and handling redundancy matters and business transfers. We have direct hands-on experience in helping companies restructure, and in representing them in the Employment Tribunals.
Civil Employment Disputes
Our Members regularly act for clients in litigation between businesses and their employees concerning matters such as confidential information database rights, garden leave, restrictive covenants, injunctions and other interim remedies, and damages for breach of contract. One of our barristers recently appeared in a seminal case in the Court of Appeal on the post-termination obligations of statutory Directors.
Workers are permitted by law to report certain types of wrongdoing in the public interest. Sometimes difficult questions arise as to whether a worker’s report was in the public interest; or whether the worker has lost a job unfairly, because they ‘blew the whistle’ or for other reasons. Some complaints amount to ‘whistleblowing’, but some do not. We can assist business clients with such issues.
We have been involved in some prominent and hard-fought whistleblowing cases in recent years.
We specialise in advising clients on how to maximise their position during early stages of a disciplinary process. As a result of the experience our members have acquired in evaluating internal systems and procedures, we are well placed to provide clients with balanced and informed advice on their prospects in any claims brought for unfair dismissal.
We have extensive experience in the field of discrimination. When a dispute or complaint results in litigation, non-lawyers often find the forensic process complicated and lengthy. In indirect discrimination cases, for instance, the law is both technical and complex.
Disability discrimination is a particular speciality of Richard O’Dair. Richard is also an expert on age discrimination and appeared in the Supreme Court in Seldon v CWJ  IRLR 476, generally regarded as the defining case on age discrimination. Another of our Members, a former part-time judge of the Employment Tribunals, has more than 25 years’ experience in race discrimination cases.
With over 140 barristers, mediators and arbitrators (including 18 Queen's Counsel, 3 Senior Counsel from Ireland and South Africa, and a Senior Advocate of the Supreme Court of India), as well as operations in Singapore and Hong Kong, The 36 Group a truly international multi-specialist set. We are uniquely placed to provide advice and representation on employment law issues before English and international courts at all levels.