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  • Laura Livingstone

    Laura Livingstone
    Partner, Head of Employment, London

    Employment, pensions & immigration, Issues at work, Employer's Issues

    T. +44 (0) 20 7759 1391

Laura is Head of Employment and has over 24 years specialist experience in the field. She dedicates 100% of her time advising clients on all aspects of employment law, with particular expertise in the luxury retail, media, IT and architectural sectors. She uses a combination of her many years’ experience and sector knowledge to provide bespoke advice to her clients.

Laura deals with all aspects of employment law, with particular expertise in advising on TUPE issues relating to traditional business sales, complex outsourcing arrangements, insolvency and restructurings. She prides herself on simplifying complicated employment issues, particularly when dealing with international clients with little knowledge of the UK. Whilst Laura is a natural conciliator, she equally does not shy away from litigation and has dealt with a number of significant cases over the years.

She also acts as a sounding board for a number of corporates, helping them to sort out tricky day-to-day employment issues, by offering clear advice and practical solutions.

As Laura acts for both organisations and individuals, she is able to give her clients a balanced view, no matter what the issue. For individuals, their case is their life and she feels in order to act for them you need to be sympathetic to this.

Highlight Matters

  • Advising an international luxury retail group on all aspects of their employment requirements which has recently involved dealing with a complex race discrimination, harassment and victimisation claim which is ongoing.  In addition she regularly advises them on TUPE, redundancies/restructurings, performance and disciplinary issues and terminations.  She has acted for them for over 15 years.
  • Acting for a household name actor in his dispute with a television channel as a result of a grievance raised by someone who had been working for him for many years.  This was resolved satisfactorily and the grievance was not upheld.  As a result further celebrities has been referred to the firm from Laura’s media lawyer contact in LA.
  • Dealing with the TUPE issues arising on the closing down of a Michelin starred restaurant in Covent Garden and setting up a restaurant with a different concept in Mayfair.  Also drafting bespoke contracts for the executive chef, head chef and other members of the catering team
  • Advising the company owned by an internationally acclaimed director on the consultation process involved in shutting down its London office including the negotiation of settlement agreements and discussing the strategic direction of the company going forward.
  • Being requested by senior board members of a publishing company to address harassment and bullying issues involving the majority shareholder by holding coaching meetings with the individual and discussing what behaviour was acceptable or not.  Receiving positive feedback from the board that these sessions had made a significant difference not only to the way in which this individual dealt with senior management but also how he dealt with the grass roots.
  • Advising on the employment aspects of the sale out of administration of a shoe company.  Following that sale this lead into a massive restructuring where a large number of stores were closed and 800 redundancies took place.  Laura was intricately involved in the consultation process and although the HR manager left as part of the redundancy exercise, she then instructed Laura when she moved to her next post which was an interim position in Austin Reed.  Laura continued to act for the Austin Reed Group for several year after that HR manager had left until, regrettably, they went into administration.
  • Representing a nationwide logistics company in a TUPE case involving 8 respondents and 17 claimants including a union where there is a dispute as to whether TUPE applied on an outsourcing where the contract was split into 3 following the transfer.Carrying out a complete audit of the HR and related documentation and systems of both an architecture firm and a software company for the purposes of GDPR but also using the opportunity in both cases to examine their HR practices and processes and to update these where necessary.
  • Acting for a Features Editor of the Evening Standard when the Standard were undergoing a redundancy round.  She was a single mum and could not afford to stop working there so Laura fought for her position and saved her position.  She was the only one in that redundancy round who did not lose her position.  As a result of her strong recommendation, Laura has acted for a number of senior individuals within the Standard.  Not as a result of the recommendation but based on her reputation in this field she has also acted for senior editors in Vogue and the Mail on Sunday as well as a broadcaster and camerawoman for Sky.
  • Advising a pharmaceutical company about the taking on of five senior members of staff from their distributor when setting up in the UK for the first time.  All these members of staff had restrictive covenants and were fairly obviously effecting a team move.  Navigating this tricky aspect successfully and continuing to advise that company now it is operating successfully two years down the line.

Legal Directory Quotes

"leading the highly commercial team at Gordon Dadds" Legal 500 UK 
"The day after I was told that I was going to be made redundant, Laura, on a friend's recommendation, took on my case. The combination of her empathy, her toughness (concealed and only brought out when needed), her understanding of the finer details of employment law and her willingness to burn the midnight oil on my behalf meant that I could stop fretting, while she entered into negotiations with the company. They didn't know what had hit them once she got into her stride and the outcome for me has been more positive that I could ever have imagined. I heartily recommend her. Thank you Laura."Super Lawyers UK

"Laura, acting for me in an employment-related matter, did not simply provide sterling - and successful - legal service, she also provided wise counsel, constructive advice and continual moral support beyond any expectation I could have had. I was able to hand over the day-to-day negotiations to her with complete confidence that she was giving them her best attention, fighting my corner and reporting back to  me regularly and without delay. She was reachable and accessible to me at any time, regardless of the hour and with endless patience (and good humour). To anyone seeking a superlative employment lawyer, I would recommend Laura without hesitation." Super Lawyers UK

Professional Associations & Memberships

  • Employment Lawyer’s Association
  • Mayfair and St James's Association

What you may not know about Laura

Laura is a great lover of live music and has attended many eclectic concerts (ranging from classical, jazz through to rock and heavy metal) with her family.  She is a passionate rugby supporter and is known to shout from Harlequins down the road from her house at the Stoop or for England in the Six Nations.  She has played lacrosse until recently but decided that on reaching the half century it was probably time to hang up her stick.  She has instead trained as a coach and supports her daughters who are both lacrosse goalies.

Employment, pensions & immigration, Issues at work, Employer's Issues

Legal 500

Education (University):
Bristol; University of West London; College of Law London