Skip to main content
Paul Gillen

Paul GillenPartner

Download vCard

I am a partner in Lewis Silkin’s Employment, Immigration and Reward division based in Belfast. I am qualified in England & Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. I provide cross jurisdiction and comparative law advice to clients throughout the UK and Ireland.

I advise clients on contentious and non-contentious matters, including HR support, mergers & acquisitions, restructuring, executive management, performance management, TUPE, outsourcing, discrimination law, and a full range of employment litigation.

My clients span a range of sectors and include multi-nationals and local businesses across the UK and Ireland. These sectors include food, retail, manufacturing, pharma, IT services and technology, financial services, education and government departments.

I am a Band 1 ranked Employment Partner in Northern Ireland, Chambers noting my ‘wealth of experience assisting clients with a broad range of employment matters including TUPE and post-acquisition restructuring, in addition to day-to-day HR support.’


Prior to training as a lawyer I had more than a decade of experience working in in-house HR roles, including being Head of HR, across sectors covering retail, construction, manufacturing and logistics.

I am a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and past-Chair of the Northern Ireland CIPD Branch. I am also a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and am IoD Ambassador for Diversity and Inclusion. I am also a member of the CBI Employment and Skills committee and I am a visiting Professor to the school of law at Ulster University.

With a practical background in commercial HR Management, I work with clients ensuring a commercial, practical and solutions focused approach. I advise on contentious matters, including in Industrial and Fair Employment Tribunals, and non-contentious matters including employment aspects of PFI/PPP, insolvency, TUPE and mergers and acquisitions, restructuring, performance management, senior executive exits as well as HR support including advising on policy and procedure. I have worked with a wide range of clients including small business traders to large multi-nationals.

Recent examples of my work for clients include:

  • Primark – advising this household named retailer on workforce structures;
  • Survitec – advising this international safety manufacturer on all aspects of their HR and employment law needs including senior management matters, internal grievances and disciplines and industrial relations issues;
  • Queen’s University Belfast – advising the University on all types of employment litigation; from Industrial and fair employment tribunals through to High Court and Court of Appeal matters. This has included deductions from wages claims, unfair dismissal, harassment and discrimination and breach of contract claims. Also advising on TUPE matters on joint ventures and outsourcing;
  • Henderson Group – advising this large retailer and food service company on all HR and employment law matters including on TUPE, performance management and employment litigation;
  • SSE Plc – advising this utilities provider on cross jurisdictional matters across Ireland, including advising on equality and diversity, including training all line managers on harassment and discrimination;
  • Large Government Department - advising on the termination of long term PFI schemes and advising on TUPE elements on new contract awards;
  • Gilbert Ash – advising this construction and civil engineering company on HR matters including policy and procedures, disciplinary and grievances and contractual matters;
  • Allianz Insurance – advising this client on a number matters across Ireland, including an internal restructure and TUPE approach for this process;
  • DCC Vital Limited – advising this international pharm company on a number of matters including on disciplinary and grievance matters, termination of employment and anti-discrimination procedures.


  • Chambers 2024 (Employment: Employer – Northern Ireland) - "Paul is a truly excellent lawyer with an excellent legal knowledge. He is able to apply his legal knowledge to practical effect to achieve great results for his clients." "Paul is a superlative practitioner who guides us through our most sophisticated and challenging labour and employment matters. He adds a tremendous amount of value with his careful planning and insight on the best modes for us to get the outcomes we wish."
  • Legal 500 2024 (Employment - Northern Ireland) - ‘Paul Gillen, for me, has not only great legal insight, but he also has very valuable knowledge of the people in our industry. He and his team are thorough in their investigations, and they are practical in the delivery of the legal solutions.’
  • Chambers 2023 (Employment: Employer – Northern Ireland) "He is strategically aware and delivers excellent application of his technical knowledge." "Paul is a great employment lawyer with HR experience who understands the issues."
  • Legal 500 (Employment: Northern Ireland) ‘Paul Gillen is approachable and provides succinct and focused advice.’ ‘Paul Gillen is a real champion for equality and diversity issues. ‘I very much value the openness and approachable manner of Paul Gillen. He has a wealth of legal knowledge, great business acumen and a broad commercial knowledge of our industry. Paul has a strong commitment to collaborative working, which I very much value.’ ‘Paul Gillen’s expertise, of not only employment legislation, but also human resource practices is exemplary. Being past Chair of the Northern Ireland branch of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, Paul has an excellent network in the HR field.’
Back To Top