EMPLOYMENT & HR
Our complete HR and Employment Law service provides you with access to advice when you need it.
HR Retainer Services
Running an HR department for your business can be time consuming, complex and expensive, that’s why at BTMK Solicitors we have a specialist team that will work for you month in month out to support or replace your HR function. Not only can this save your business money, you’re getting the most qualified team possible working as part of your business.
Why choose BTMK as your HR Provider?
- We have fully qualified solicitors leading our team that specialise in Employment and HR law. We have an excellent reputation in our region in this highly specialist area of work and we back up our HR knowledge with real expertise in this complex and regularly developing area.
- We’ll be able to serve all of your needs in-house. Very often, the key to giving straightforward HR advice is anticipating what a disgruntled employee may do next. If the matter becomes litigious, which we’ll obviously try and avoid, you won’t need to go elsewhere. All your needs can be met at BTMK.
- Our legal qualifications mean that we’re obliged to keep up to date with the law and procedure in this technical area of legal practice. This isn’t just about being a legal-eagle, but knowing how Courts and tribunals are approaching different types of matters.
- Our employment lawyers work as part of a bigger commercially focussed team of lawyers; our colleagues can deal with specialisms that may affect other parts of your business, whether that’s a legal dispute or the buying or selling of part or whole of your business.
- We know how to train! We’re regularly asked to cascade our expertise in quickly developing areas of employment law and practice. What should your company’s approach be to technological changes such as social media advancement? What is best practice when dealing with flexible working requests? We can advise you and provide training to small or large groups at a negotiable fee – giving your in-house teams the ability to have confidence in their decision making.
Subject to our HR Retainer Specific Terms and Conditions of Engagement.
New Employment contracts a preferential rate of £450 + VAT (normally £600).
New Handbooks at a preferential rate of £800 + VAT (normally £1000).
Additional Hours will be charged at the preferential rate of £190+ Vat per hour (normally £255).
Give us a call and we’ll come and see you for a free no obligation chat to discuss all of the HR Retainer Options. And of course if you’d rather use us on an ad-hoc basis for any of the service we provide, that’s fine with us too.
Employment Contracts & Handbooks
All employees should have an up to date contract of employment, reflecting their current terms and conditions. We approach drafting contracts by looking at the needs of your business and the things that matter to you. We provide our clients with bespoke contracts which safeguard your business and frequently contain the following:
- Provisions to protect your confidential information and intellectual property.
- Post termination restrictions tailored to the employee’s position and responsibilities.
- Garden leave and notice provisions which allow you to restrict the activity of an exiting employee.
It is important that employee handbooks have core policies and procedures to protect your business. In particular, anti-bullying and equal opportunities policies can be important tools when defending discrimination claims. Increasingly employers require more detailed sickness and capability management procedures to address problem absence. We tailor policies to your requirements and can advise on your internal sickness management procedures.
Restrictive Covenants & Confidentiality
It is a common misconception that post termination restrictions are unlikely to be enforceable and can only act as a deterrent to employees. Whilst restrictions often act as a deterrent to employees who are leaving an organisation, for restrictions to be enforceable, they must be drafted to protect your legitimate business interests and tailored to the employee’s position and responsibilities. Restrictive covenants often act as a strong deterrent for employees to act in breach of the terms. If you consider that an employee has breached the terms of any restriction, it is important to act quickly and obtain advice to limit any potential damage to your business. We can assist with any required court action to enforce the restrictions and recover any loss you may have suffered.
In order to protect your business, you may require employees to be subject to restrictive covenants and enhanced confidentiality obligations. It is important that these are carefully drafted and considered to maximise their enforceability.
We can advise you on what may be necessary and draft these for you.
If you receive notification from ACAS that an employee has started early conciliation, or a claim in the Employment Tribunal is issued against you, it is important to act promptly.
The ACAS early conciliation process is designed to encourage the parties to an employment dispute to resolve matters before a claim is issued. If the matter cannot be resolved through ACAS and Tribunal proceedings are issued, a response must be filed within 28 days and by the date shown within the Tribunal documentation.
We pride ourselves on our excellent track record of achieving the withdrawal or strike out of claims, succeeding at Tribunal hearings, or achieving very low settlements. We frequently represent employers faced with Tribunal hearings on agreed budgets and can assist with all aspects of the case, including representation at hearings.
A Settlement Agreement (formally known as a Compromise Agreement) is a legally binding agreement between an employer and an employee. Usually, an employee accepts a sum of money in return for agreeing not to bring certain legal claims against their employer. Settlement agreements are most frequently used by employers when a relationship with an employee breaks down, when employees are redundant and when the employer wishes to agree specific exit terms. The terms of the settlement agreement should be tailored to your business needs and usually cover matters such as:
- The protection of confidential information
- The return of company property
- Post-termination restrictions
- Prohibiting derogatory comments
We can draft bespoke agreements to ensure that your business is protected from future claims by the exiting employee.
TUPE & Business Sales
If you are buying or selling a business you need to consider how the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (known as TUPE), may affect your sale or purchase. When a business changes owner, its employees may be protected by TUPE. When TUPE applies:
- The employees’ jobs usually transfer over to the new company
- Their employment terms and conditions transfer
- Continuity of employment is maintained
TUPE may also apply if you contract out a service or if you take over a contract for services from another supplier.
If TUPE applies and you fail to warn and consult affected employees about the transfer, you may be liable to pay each of the affected employees a penalty award of up to 13 weeks gross pay. You may also end up being liable for other claims, such as unfair dismissal, or breach of contract.
If you propose to buy or sell a business, or you take over from an outgoing contractor, it is important to seek advice at an early stage and before you agree terms.
Redundancy & Workplace Reorganisation
We advise on small and large scale reorganisations and restructures. Where it is necessary to make redundancies, we can advise you through the entire process. We attend consultation meetings and draft all of the necessary documents from redundancy selection criteria to consultation and termination letters. It can be daunting if employees challenge the criteria used or their individual point score. We are on hand to advise and support you through these challenging issues.
If you are seeking to make more than 20 employees redundant, special procedures apply and you must follow a fixed duration consultation process.
It is important to consider your strategy before implementing any changes to your workforce. We like to become involved when you first consider that you need to make changes to help you put in place fair procedures and reduce the risk of aggrieved employees bringing claims relating to the process.
Directors, Shareholders & Executives
Acting for Directors, Senior Employees and Board-Level recruitment can be complicated and challenging. We can help with complex employment issues and we’ll steer you through contracts, claims and disputes.
We specialise in advising on all contentious and non-contentious issues in this specialist area of the law. Often, employment contracts have to be read in conjunction with partnership or shareholder agreements, or Memorandum and Articles of Association and restrictive covenants and other obligations may also have to be interpreted in light of other formal documentation. We have specialists not only in our employment team but also in our corporate and commercial team and we’ll work together, to ensure that the preparation or dispute in relation to one form of agreement is also considered with other contractual remedies that could be available to you.
We can negotiate an exit package an employee which may also need to end any company-law or partnership liabilities that the business could have and we’ve got an entire team who will co-ordinate to enable you to get the best possible outcome.
Call for a FREE chat
“Very happy with the service and we felt confident our requirements were met.“
– Local Business, Canvey Island
“We feel confident that you would treat others as we were treated – which was very well indeed!“
– Local Business, Hockley
“A good honest service – you are different to most.“
– Mr. B, Benfleet
“Friendly staff who listen to what you have to say“
– Mr. L, Shoeburyness
“I would have no hesitation in recommending BTMK as the employment solicitor of choice.“
– Mr. D, Southend-on-Sea