Chris was exceptional in negotiating a settlement with my former employer. He is a rare lawyer who understands both the technical detail and the bigger commercial picture. He provided great strategic advice and his instincts are spot-on. He is also very personable and demonstrated incredible empathy and understanding during a difficult time for me.
In-House Senior Solicitor
I worked extensively with Chris when he successfully helped negotiate a settlement agreement with my former employer. Chris was great to work with. He is not only a clever, experienced and, most importantly, effective lawyer but also a trustworthy advisor that I am happy to have relied upon during a rather stressful time. I wholeheartedly recommend him.
Chris was a partner throughout the entire process providing both strategic and legal advice. He went out of his way to be accommodating at every stage, providing excellent service, leading a positive outcome around my challenging situation.
My lawyer knew his stuff; he was 100% on my side; he restored my confidence and I felt empowered because of his knowledge and attitude; he was easy to talk to — I never felt judged for the accusations on my side which meant I could be open and honest and didn't feel like an idiot; he came back to my emails really quickly so I was never left doubting anything or worrying; he gave me the help I needed when I felt powerless and hard done to; the process could have been hard, but it was actually a positive one and a cathartic experience; he was perfect.
You provided excellent advice and you understood the ramifications of a complex case. I should also thank you for your calm and always polite approach. You showed understanding without losing sight of the best strategy to achieve the ultimate goals.
Higher Education Professional
Thanks so much for your help: you helped diffuse an experience that could have soured my career.
CEO of a Charity
Chris is a specialist employment lawyer. He advises employers and employees on employment law issues, helping to avoid or solve problems at work. Chris’ focus is on understanding what your aims are and what is most important to you, and then working with you to develop a strategy that is suited to your aims and the situation.
Chris’ work covers the spectrum of the employment relationship from start to finish. This includes:
- reviewing or drafting employment contracts, consultancy agreements, policies and staff handbooks
- grievances and other workplace problems
- negotiating compensation packages and settlement agreements on termination of employment, often involving significant compensation sums
- dealing with redundancies / restructuring
- unfair dismissal, breach of contract, discrimination and whistleblowing issues
- transfer of undertakings (TUPE)
- post-termination issues including restrictive covenants
- bringing and defending employment related claims in the Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeal Tribunal and High Court.
Chris has particular interest and expertise in discrimination issues, including disability discrimination and issues relating to flexible working and/or the return from maternity leave.
- Senior Executives
- SMEs and owner managed businesses
- Large corporates
- HR Directors
Unlike many employment lawyers, Chris works for both businesses and individuals. He finds that this is extremely helpful in maintaining perspectives and being able to anticipate how the other party may react to a situation better. It therefore brings big strategic and tactical advantages to all of his clients.
Work for Individuals
- Helped and advised many people in relation to grievances and/or termination of employment and negotiated favourable settlement packages, for example people who have been:
- placed at risk of redundancy or told that their role was redundant, often in circumstances where the redundancy had not been carried out fairly or where there was not a genuine redundancy situation
- bullied or mistreated by their manager or others at work, often leading to the individual being unwell due to stress and anxiety
- dismissed or have suffered detriment as a result of raising concerns about things happening at work
- discriminated against on grounds such as gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, disability and age
- dismissed, had their roles changed or faced other discrimination during or on their return from maternity leave or other family related leave.
- Helped employees to solve issues that they were facing at work, such as relating to flexible working, salary issues or changes made to their roles.
- Reviewed and advised on employment contracts, consultancy agreements and post-termination restrictions (restrictive covenants).
- Brought Employment Tribunal claims on behalf of individuals or assisted individuals with their Employment Tribunal claims, usually resulting in a favourable settlement of the claim.
Work for Businesses
- Advised employers on various disciplinary, performance and sickness issues, grievances, and other employee-relations issues, focussing on achieving commercial objectives whilst reducing legal risks.
- Advised on employment contracts, consultancy agreements, staff handbooks and similar issues, including creating a suite of policies, template letters, flow charts and guidance for managers for a large employer.
- Advised on a large scale reorganisation of the UK wide sales team of a pharmaceutical company.
- Drafted and negotiated settlement agreements, including in large redundancy exercises.
- Successfully defended and/or settled multiple Employment Tribunal claims, including:
- a global engineering and construction company facing a claim by a senior employee of disability discrimination and failure to make reasonable adjustments
- a multinational hotel chain facing a complex whistleblowing, unfair dismissal and breach of contract claim by a member of the Senior Management Team.
Previous Law Firms
- Charles Russell Speechlys LLP / Speechly Bircham LLP
- The College of Law, Legal Practice Course, Distinction
- University of Manchester, Law LLB, First