Disputes are an unfortunate reality for clients. We advise charities, churches, schools, businesses and private individuals who are facing a dispute. We represent them in alternative dispute resolution (ADR) and/or litigation.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
A significant number of disagreements are capable of resolution without the need for court proceedings. It is important to take advice about your position as soon as a dispute arises. This is particularly so for charities, churches and schools, which have extra fiduciary responsibilities.
The types of disputes and difficulties that arise for our clients vary greatly in nature; hence our practice covers many types of civil dispute. We have years of experience of achieving excellent outcomes for clients through round table discussions, mediation and/or arbitration. Often agreement or settlement can be achieved very quickly even without ADR.
Sometimes parties are not able to resolve their differences. Whilst litigation should in most circumstances be a last resort, those who must protect their interests may have to consider court action and all that that can encompass. Similarly, defendants in litigation should act in a way which protects their interests. This is generally done by participating in the proceedings as soon as possible and seeking resolution.
We act for clients who are claimants or defendants in many types of civil litigation including disputes about contract, property, probate, construction, negligence, landlord and tenant and insolvency in the county court or the High Court. Our work in litigation includes drafting statements of case to put before the court, making applications, collating evidence, preparing submissions and dealing with the judgement and aftermath.
As part of our litigation work, we act for parties involved in Administrative Court matters, mainly Judicial Review. This arises when clients wish to challenge decisions of public authorities, assist with defending a public authority decision or indeed are being judicially challenged themselves.
Employing staff gives rise to certain responsibilities for churches, charities, schools, businesses and private individuals. There is a great deal of legislation which has been built upon by legal cases.
We advise employers about their ongoing employment law duties, whilst they are recruiting, managing, disciplining and dismissing any staff member. We also draft employment contracts and staff handbooks including internal grievance, disciplinary, capability and redundancy procedures. We advise regularly on the areas of discrimination, parental rights, sickness, share options, bonus rights and TUPE.
Employees are entitled to bring proceedings in the Employment Tribunal or the courts to seek redress if they consider they have been wronged. We act for employees who are experiencing troubles at work and advise about grievances, disciplinary proceedings and about their rights generally.
We advise about and draft compromise agreements for employers and employees and liaise with ACAS the conciliation service.
We represent clients in the employment tribunal, employment appeal tribunal, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court sometimes involving high profile, high value or precedent setting cases.
Schools, colleges and universities often require legal advice about their responsibilities to staff and students. We are experienced in advising about admissions, exclusions, curriculum, special educational needs, governance and funding.
Our clients include independent schools, voluntary aided schools, Academies and higher education institutions. We advise head teachers, governors, trustees and independent appeal panels. We act for teachers, parents, carers and/or students who require advice or representation to project their rights.