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Emma Perera

Emma PereraPartner

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I have a broad practice advising on all aspects of employment law with a particular focus on complex Tribunal claims, discrimination, data protection and large scale consultation exercises.

I have worked for Lewis Silkin for over fifteen years, joining the firm in 2001 as a trainee solicitor.

My clients are drawn from all aspects of business, from blue chip multinational organisations to London based media companies. I have spent a number of years working closely with a large multinational corporation, operating as its sole UK in-house employment lawyer.

Drawing on my experiences working in-house, I work in close collaboration with HR, legal and senior executives to find practical and client-focused solutions to the wide range of issues which arise in the workplace; from structuring remuneration packages to handling complex ill heath dismissals; from managing outsourcing projects to responding to complaints to the ICO. I am experienced in running complex Tribunal claims (most often involving discrimination or whistleblowing elements), seeing them through to trial or resolution, including mediation. I have also developed a particular expertise in managing large scale consultation exercises relating to redundancies, changing terms and conditions, TUPE and pensions.

Employment

Recent examples of the kind of work undertaken includes advising on:

  • Case law relating to statutory holiday pay, defending and settling claims brought by over 400 employees and devising a complex formula for future calculations
  • Managing a claim of victimization involving numerous witnesses and settling it at the beginning of a three week ET hearing
  • A site closure affecting a substantial number of employees including advising on collective redundancy consultation obligations
  • Working with HR to support a transgender employee's transition in the workplace including reviewing appropriate employee communications
  • The drafting of restrictive covenants which are enforceable and in line with global standard terms
  • Discrimination in the context of recruitment including drafting a detailed note of advice setting out risks and potential options

Data & Privacy

I advise on all aspects of data protection in the context of employment having an in-depth knowledge of the Data Protection Act and relevant employment codes. Work includes:

  • Advising on how to handle disclosures to third parties such as to recruitment agencies, the police and to external IT and software providers (including overseas transfers) including drafting appropriate privacy notices
  • Conducting and documenting appropriate privacy impact assessments, for example, when covert monitoring in the context of disciplinary investigations
  • Managing complex and substantial subject access requests
  • Defending ICO complaints and investigations including successfully defending a complaint ICO regarding the use of exemptions to withhold certain information following a subject access request

Manufacturing & Engineering

Having worked for a number of large manufacturing clients I have particular experience and expertise in employment issues arising in that context including:

  • Dealing with unions including providing support and advice in the context of pay negotiations
  • Managing industrial action including the prompt and effective management of unofficial industrial action
  • Advising on working time issues including the calculation of holiday pay and the carry-over of holiday due to sickness
  • Handling flexible working requests and reasonable adjustments particularly in the context of shift working
  • Preparing for and managing large scale voluntary and compulsory redundancies including drafting appropriate communications, compliance with collective consultation obligations and age discrimination in the context of redundancy selection and payment terms
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