Tim Russell Tim Russell - Employment Law Consultant  
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I provide services to clients on all aspects of Employment Law including ( initiating or defending ) Employment tribunals (unfair/wrongful dismissal) and TUPE as well as issues which may or do result in Civil Litigation whether arising out of employment law disputes or otherwise eg disputed debts. I regularly deal with e.g .County Court disputes and High Court injunction applications as well as drafting restrictive covenants in the fist place and have acted for clients at , and or presided ,over , more than 500 Employment Tribunal ( ET ) cases. I advise on proposed settlement agreement, employment / service contracts, board room disputes, discrimination claims under the Equality Act 2010 and TUPE and redundancy claims and all aspects of contentious or non-contentious law. I draft employment policies and handbooks as well as reviewing them to reflect recent legislation (e.g SMCR for the financial services industry ) and deal regularly with disciplinary issues sometimes to assist employees but more often for employees and to include internal appeals.

I do not undertake conditional fees but am content to give an initial opinion without charge. After that and subject to any conflict my fixed hourly charge is £195 per hour (and I would argue I work efficiently and effectively given my experience and having qualified as a practising solicitor in 1985 ) or a fixed fee by agreement. A typical and straightforward ET claim might cost some £5,000 in total fees based on a 2 day hearing . From initial institution to the conclusion of a final hearing or settlement if earlier. If a fixed fee then this would be a maximum fee whatever the circumstances and so an early settlement would mean a lower fee.

But if an hourly rate then fees would be charged (by agreement) on a stage by stage basis . I would in such circumstances expect initial advice on a claim to cost around 350 , drafting a claim or defence to cost around 550 , any preliminary hearing around 600 ( less if by telephone) , the interlocutory stages from there to Trial around 2,250 ( to include disclosure and preparing bundles and drafting and agreeing witness statements and schedules of loss where appropriate as well as correspondence on the case between the parties and Tribunal ) and then the hearing itself . The cost of that would depend on the complexity and length of the hearing but typically 525 a day plus any hearing preparation needed. I do not charge for any disbursements under 50 and if over that I only charge at cost and by agreement . Finally I do not charge VAT .

I am happy to be part of a competitive tender and or give a quote on fees and once instructed will always respond to any query and or email within 24 hours . 365 days a year. If my advice is delayed I will not make any charge for it.

If asked to assist a client with an Employment Settlement Agreement I will do so within any fee contribution provided by the employer / former employer seeking the settlement agreement. Unless otherwise agreed in advance.

If I am asked to assist on a particular matter where I am not an expert I will inform you of this in advance but will always try and introduce my clients ( if they wish and without charge ) to someone who is . If however I do act on your behalf I will always undertake the work myself other than where you ask me to get my HR colleague to assist and I commit to providing a responsive and personal service to include a substantive response to any query within 24 hours of receipt of email instruction .

With any litigation including an unfair dismissal claim I would normally spilt any fee into stages and would wish to agree this with a client in advance . If a fixed fee is not agreed I will send an account at the end of a particular project or by way of an interim monthly bill if sooner other than where agreed with my client.

I do not hold a client account and do not seek any fees in advance of undertaking any work but before doing so (i.e. starting work ) will usually wish to agree the/any fee structure.

My fees include VAT ( so individual clients save 20% by instructing me rather than most other solicitors who will charge VAT ) and I do not charge any disbursements other than expenses agreed with my clients and or the disbursements incurred exclusively for my client over 50. Such as a large amount of photocopying. When disbursements are charged this is at cost.

As I am a sole practitioner I carry out all the work needed myself other than by agreement with you . My experience is set out in my Cv [ link to cv] . I do have full Solicitors Professional indemnity insurance ( effected through Lockton Companies LLP the details of which are available upon request ) covering me and therefore my clients up to 2 million . Giving my clients peace of mind .

However I have an HR expert who is able to assist me on eg company handbooks , payroll and other HR issues . She has worked effectively with me for over 25 years. I also have access to Barristers who I respect and who I might sometimes recommend to clients where they might be assisted by the use of Counsel . E.g. where they are available at less costs than me for the advocacy at an ET hearing.

As I am an Employment Judge I am not permitted to carry out any work relating to a case which is or may be heard in the Central London Employment Tribunal where I sit as a fee paid judge.

Tim Russell
Tel 07767 646 656

Case of the Month
8/2020
Unfair Dismissal Claim
The EAT held in the case of Evans v Brent Council that an unfair dismissal claim should not be struck out if there is a reasonable prospect of success, even where no compensation will be awarded, because a claimant is entitled to have a finding of unfair dismissal even if of limited/no value.
 
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