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Laura Farnsworth

Laura FarnsworthPartner

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I head our rockhopper service and have been a member of the employment team at Lewis Silkin since qualifying as a solicitor in 2001 and have been a partner since 2009.

My day-to-day practice involves dealing with the full range of employment law issues, including performance management, ill-health absence, transfers, discrimination, redundancies, disciplinaries and grievances. I have a particular interest and expertise in the law on family rights, flexible working requests, sex discrimination and gender pay gap reporting, as well as how to deal with tricky disability and sickness absence issues. I have also advised several companies on their modern slavery statements and supply chain due diligence.

I manage our fixed fee HR and employment law support service; rockhopper. rockhopper is an innovative and low cost service, provided by a team of specialist employment lawyers.


My employment law practice is varied and I work with clients ranging from national high street retailers and restaurant chains, to advertising agencies and business consultancies. Examples of recent advisory work include:

  • Advising a PR agency on restrictive covenant issues
  • Advising an advertising agency in relation to an employee with complex long-term sickness absence and grievance issues
  • Negotiating the terms of a senior executive's exit on behalf of a national chain of restaurants
  • Advising a publishing company in relation to a service provision change and impact of TUPE

Retail, Hospitality & Leisure

I am a member of our firm's retail, hospitality and leisure sector group. I work with several national chains of restaurants, advising on all employment and HR matters, including tronc issues, national minimum/living wage, holiday pay and senior executive issues. A two year secondment in the legal department of a large department store in London has contributed to my retail industry knowledge and experience. Examples of recent work include:

  • Preparing a dry run gender pay gap report for a national retailer and advising on the steps to take to reduce the gap
  • Advising a high street retailer on national minimum wage issues related to staff uniform
  • Helping a luxury department store to prepare its first modern slavery statement
  • Co-chairing an Employment Lawyers Association committee set up to respond to the government's consultation on tips, service charges and troncs
  • I regularly speak at retail-focused conferences and write articles for retail publications

Awards & Recognition

  • Who's Who Legal Global Leader - Labour & Employment (England) 2021
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