Introduction to Employment Law

This event is in the past
Thu, 7 Nov 2019
Birmingham (National)
Venue Address:
Park Regis Birmingham
Broad Street
B15 1DT
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Event Type:
Day one runs from 9.30am to 5.45pm, with dinner in the evening at 7pm. Day two runs from 9.30am to 5.00pm.
CPD hours:
Fully Booked
Introduction to Employment Law
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ELA two day residential course organised in association with PEN, the Network of Employment Law PSLs

Thursday 7 - Friday 8 November 2019

Venue: Park Regis Birmingham, Broad Street, Birmingham, B15 1DT

Fee: Non- residential: £360 + VAT until 29 March 2019. From 30 March 2019 £450 + VAT.
Residential: £480 + VAT until 29 March 2019.  From 30 March 2019 £600 + VAT. 

The non-residential fee includes dinner at the Park Regis in the evening of Thursday 7 November.

The residential fee includes bed and breakfast and evening dinner at the Park Regis on Thursday 7 November.

A 30% discount for members outside the Midlands region, or a 50% discount for the voluntary sector,  pupil barristers and barristers under 2 years callis available on the full fees in the alternative, with no booking deadline.

Day one runs from 9.30am to 5.45pm, with dinner in the evening at 7pm. Day two runs from 9.30am to 5.00pm.

The course aims to give your newly-qualified assistants a chance to hit the ground running with an intensive foundation course in the essentials of employment law. ELA and PEN have pooled their expertise to provide a practical as well as legal grounding in the following key areas:

  • Employment status
  • Recruitment
  • General principles of the employment contract, changing terms of employment
  • Restrictive covenants
  • Redundancy and collective consultation
  • Whistleblowing      
  • TUPE
  • Disciplinary and dismissal processes
  • Managing sickness
  • Discrimination     

The course combines lectures and case studies to help delegates:

  • Understand the basic law needed to handle a typical newly-qualified workload
  • Apply their legal knowledge to the practical realities of managing the client's needs. The employee's and employer's perspectives will be considered in all the sessions
  • Gain the confidence to act without excessive supervision and hand-holding

All sessions are conducted by highly respected employment law practitioners, who speak from the perspectives of substantial experience of representing both employers and employees.


Day One - 7 November 2019

The day will be chaired by Jane Fielding and Connie Cliff at Gowling WLG (UK) LLP 

9.30am  Registration and tea/coffee

10.00am  Introduction from the Chair

Simon Rice-Birchall, Kate Sheehan and Emma Humphreys, Eversheds Sutherland LLP

Lecture session divided into four subsections:

Employment status

The speakers will begin by considering the various ways in which individuals may supply their work to a company and outline the test of employment status and the rights of employees and other workers.


The second section will then consider the practical and legal issues which may arise during the recruitment of an individual to fill a role.

The employment contract

The third section will consider the terms which may exist in an employment contract, and the statutory and common law elements which make an employment contract different from other forms of contract.

Changing the contract

This final section will look at changing terms and conditions, considering how an employer may seek to go about both individuals and collective contractual variation.

Ethical considerations

11.25am  Tea/coffee

11.40am  THE CONTRACT OF EMPLOYMENT (continued)

12.50pm  Lunch

Gareth Brahams, BDBF LLP

Lecture session:

  • Explanation of common covenants: non-competition; non-solicitation of customers and employees; confidential information; garden leave clauses
  • General principles of enforceability

3.00pm  Tea/coffee

Charlie Frost, Squire Patton Boggs (UK) LLP

Lecture session:

  • Redundancy as a potentially fair reason for dismissal
  • Definition of ‘redundancy’ and three redundancy situations
  • Individual vs collective redundancy processes
  • Overview of an individual redundancy process, relationship with ACAS Code and strategies/suggested approaches (including documentation required, meetings, companions, consultation, selection criteria/pools and appeals)
  • Compensation and redundancy payments (statutory, contractual and other enhanced payments)
  • Unfair / discriminatory redundancy and potential claims
  • Suitable alternative employment and trial periods

Collective Consultation

  • When the duty to consult on collective redundancies arises
  • Content of information and consultation
  • Who to consult with, including where recognised union refuses to participate
  • Interaction with Information and Consultation Regulations
  • Practical issues in managing consultation process: notification to BIS, Q&As for staff, preparing scripts for managers, privilege on advice

Martin Chitty, Gowling WLG LLP 

  • What amounts to a protected disclosure?
  • What is " in the public interest"?
  • Causation issues – when is detriment/dismissal by reason of the protected disclosure?
  • Remedies (including interim relief)
  • Practical matters: whistleblowing policy, whistleblowing officer, confidential telephone hotlines

5.45pm Close of day one

7.00pm  Dinner

Day Two - 8 November 2019

9.30am  TUPE
Patrick Brodie, RPC LLP

Lecture session:

  • When a TUPE transfer may arise
  • The legal consequences of TUPE applying
  • The role of an employment lawyer in a transaction and the negotiating issues which arise in a TUPE situation
  • How TUPE may impact on individual employees and tribunal litigation

10.30am  Tea/coffee

10.45am  TUPE (continued)

Beverley Sunderland, Crossland Solicitors

Lecture session:

  • Categories of dismissal: actual/constructive, unfair, wrongful, retirement, ill-health termination, redundancy
  • The ACAS Code of Practice – application, requirements, consequences of breach; contractual procedures
  • Practical issues re disciplinary hearings, including use of witness evidence and documents, companions without prejudice, negotiations

12.00pm Tea/coffee


1.00pm Lunch

Linda Jones, Pinsent Masons LLP

Lecture session:

  • Long term and short term sickness, disability discrimination
  • Medical testing, medical records, instructing medical experts
  • Handling disciplinary issues where employee off sick   

3.00pm  Tea/coffee

Kiran Daurka, Leigh Day

Lecture session:

  • Overview of the UK’s discrimination laws
  • The protected characteristics
  • Direct discrimination
  • Indirect discrimination
  • Victimisation
  • Harassment
  • Confidentiality agreements, including the use of NDAs
  • Employers’ (and managers’) liability for discrimination
  • Remedies
  • How disability discrimination law differs

Comfort break at around 4.00pm

5.00pm   Close of course