February 22, 2017

HR Consultant Or Employment Lawyer – Who Would You Prefer To Have In Your Corner?

Written by Stuart Atherton

Whether you are a micro-SME employing less than five people or a well-established, multi-site organisation employing five hundred plus, HR matters can be an issue for many business and potentially very costly.
It is with this in mind that we pose the question “HR Consultant or Employment Lawyer?” as a recent case brought this question to the fore with a very clear answer.
Whilst we are unable to identify the company in question, we are able to outline some key aspects of the case, in particular, the client’s thoughts on this question.
The client, a charitable organisation, required our services to defend a claim brought against it on the grounds of unfair dismissal, disability discrimination and potential personal injury.
The claim was valued in excess of £30,000 and the matter was listed for a two-day hearing that would have included approximately £20,000 of costs in respect of the managerial time and witnesses.
Ultimately, the claim was settled on a commercial basis for a total sum of £3,000 and the employee, who was a long serving member of staff, was legally represented throughout the entire proceedings.
The CEO, whilst happy with the outcome, is very keen to point out that he values the input of an employment lawyer and not a HR Consultant.
He commented “the use of Employment HR Consultants generates unnecessary procedures and, in any event, when it comes to matters which have become litigious, it usually involves a disproportionate amount of managerial time being taken to deal with issues such as disclosure of documentation, taking witness statements and interviews which should be left to an experienced employment solicitor rather than a consultant”.
If you require HR or Employment Law support, arrange a meeting with one of our team by calling 01792 450010 or emailing [email protected]