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Katherine Reece

Markel Law

Employment Advisor

Katherine has 20 years’ Employment Law experience, having completed her Law degree in 1999 and the Bar Vocational Course in 2000. She conducts all types of Employment Law work from advice, case preparation and advocacy, representing mostly respondent businesses but also claimants.

She has supported a wide range of businesses from small through to PLCs and multinational companies. Her experience spans most sectors with particular focus on professional services, logistics, distribution and care in addition to some public and voluntary sector and education work. She has dealt with a number of large organisations with varying levels of unionisation and with unions directly.

Types of cases – she has dealt with just about every type of claim including cases of alleged complex discrimination ranging from those which hinge on factual dispute requiring careful presentation of evidence to those with more technical aspects such as whether there is a disability. Her experience covers dealing with every type of protected characteristic and claims with overlapping types of discrimination and with multiple heads of claim. Claims have included dealing with vexatious and serial litigants and cases which require resilience.

Dealing with high-value cases and remedy hearings which involve pension loss and contentious aspects including loss of opportunity, aggravated damages, injury to feelings and personal injury, she is experienced in sourcing, instructing and examining at Tribunal appropriate medical, tax and other financial and other experts along with surveillance/investigation where necessary. She has particular expertise on the minimum wage and has represented businesses in appeals in the Employment Tribunal against Enforcement Notices. She also has significant experience of TUPE from early stage negotiations and advice prior to acquisition through to substantive disputes and in bringing section 12 TUPE claims against transferors, and has dealt with many cases of alleged automatically unfair dismissal and detriment cases such as for whistleblowing, health and safety and union related activity.

Advocacy – in addition to case preparation, Katherine has conducted advocacy in several hundred Employment Tribunal cases varying from simple wages claims to multi-week and group claims and complex discrimination and TUPE cases involving multiple respondents. She has appeared in every Tribunal in England, Scotland and Wales and keeps abreast of regional practice and differing evidence procedures such as in Scotland and has also advised on and appeared at reconsideration applications.

Appeals – much of Katherine’s work over recent years has focused on appeals, from reviewing judgments and advising on the merits of appeal to drafting, conducting and appearing at the Employment Appeal Tribunal on approximately 30 occasions with a number of her cases being high profile leading cases and widely reported in law reports and in the media. She has particular knowledge of the rules of procedure at the EAT and the potential narrow grounds of appeal and has had several cases that have been appealed to the Court of Appeal.

Negotiating and settlements – Katherine looks at quantum at an early stage with an awareness that cost is a significant strategic issue for all parties and is conscious that minimising the potential for reputational damage is a priority for many respondents. To this end, she has extensive experience of negotiating and settling cases to achieve the best possible outcome for clients and experience of settlements at pre and early conciliation stage through to door of the Tribunal.

Executive and senior exit packages – she has particular experience in conducting and advising on protected conversations with a view to agreeing an exit package or settlement prior to the instigation of proceedings at all levels including on many occasions at a senior management/high value/director level. She has drafted and advised on settlement agreements of high value where tact and detail are paramount.

Consultancy services – for both in-house and external clients, she has supported and conducted meetings including disciplinary hearings, grievance hearings, appeals, redundancy, TUPE and variation consultations, flexible working meetings and appeals, protected conversations and any other sensitive issues that arise such as where there is a clash of personalities. She has also carried out internal investigations as an independent third party on a number of occasions.

Training – Katherine has experience of designing materials and presenting Employment Law updates and people management courses at various levels from team leaders dealing with disciplinary issues to senior management and for professional colleagues. She has contributed articles on a number of Employment Law topics for colleagues and clients in previous roles.