The team at Orpen Franks has extensive experience in advising on all aspects of both contentious and non-contentious Employment Law matters including Employment Contracts, Polices and Procedures, Statutory Rights and Obligations, Terminations, Redundancies, Unfair Dismissals and Equality issues. Our clients include large corporations, SMEs and start-ups.

Our approach is to assist our clients to ensure compliance with legal obligations whilst fostering employee relationships. Where difficulties arise, we provide practical, quality, legal solutions with an emphasis on expert advice and effective communication, to achieve the best outcomes.

We have extensive experience in representation in mediation, and hearings before the Workplace Relations Commission, the Labour Court and the full spectrum of Employment Law dispute fora.

Our focus is on helping our clients stay abreast of the ever-changing legislative landscape; such as the duties and rights introduced in 2022/2023 by the Sick Leave Act 2022, the EU Directive on Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions 2022, The Enhanced Protection for Whilstblowers Act 2022 (the PDA) and Work Life Balance (and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2023.

Areas of Expertise:

HR Policies and Procedures

Drafting, reviewing and revising staff handbooks including advice regarding disciplinary and grievance procedures, bullying and harassment.

Termination of Employment

Negotiating, drafting and reviewing termination and compromise agreements and severance agreements. Advising on disciplinary proceedings, dismissal, redundancies and termination of employment.

Transfer of Undertakings Regulations (TUPE)

Advising on employee rights and preparing documentation in respect of the transfer of employees in respect of a merger, acquisition or business transfer including advising on the information and consultation procedures with employees.

Rationalisation, Reorganisation and Redundancy

Providing advice to employers who wish to rationalise their workforce through redundancy, including collective redundancy, and advising with regard to redundancy packages.

Performance Issues

Unfortunately performance issues can arise at any stage in the course of an employee’s tenure. When they do, it is vital to address them swiftly and effectively to improve performance, prevent minimise damage to the employment relationship, avoid excessive burden on the employer and avert potential exposure to grievances, stress or constructive dismissal claims.

At Orpen Franks we provide clear guidance and support throughout the management of Performance Improvement Programmes to assist our clients to minimise the disruption and potential legal actions that cane arise when an employee’s performance falls below an acceptable standard.

Post-Termination Restrictions

Most businesses wish to ensure a measure of protection for their information and to prevent the damage an employee could do when moving to a competitor or setting up business on their own. There are a number of different ways in which an employer can seek to restrict the activities of a former employee after the employment relationship comes to an end. Employers should be aware that there is a reluctance on the part of the courts in Ireland to enforce overly restrictive post termination clauses.

We advise clients by working them to draft post-termination restrictive clauses and advise on the issues that the courts take into consideration when determining whether or not they are enforceable.

Constructive Dismissal

Occasionally an employer may find itself in a situation where an employee resigns and claims that their work circumstances had become so unbearable as to amount to a repudiation of their contract of employment. In such circumstances, the employer may face a claim for Constructive Dismissal. It is usually an effective defence to a claim of Constructive Dismissal that the employee has failed to exhaust the employer’s grievance procedure. Employers should ensure to have a comprehensive grievance policy which includes a right of appeal for employees, and that this policy is followed when an employee makes a complaint.

Breaches of Data Protection (GDPR)

Since the introduction of General Data Protection Regulations, Irish employers have been under significant obligations as to how they collect, use and protect employee data. Adequate training, polices and procedures must be implemented with regard to data processing and provision must be made for Data Access Requests. In general the use of employee data must be lawful, transparent, minimal, accurate, and it should be governed by principles of confidentiality and accountability. There are also restrictions and obligations as to how long employee data can and must be stored. Where data breaches occur, there is a reporting obligation to the Data Protection Commission and the Irish courts have shown a willingness to compensate employees for certain consequential losses that.

General Employment Law Advice

Advising on Irish employment legislation including acts relating to the organisation of working time, equal pay, health and safety, payment of wages, minimum notice and data protection.

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Employment Law