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Employment & Pensions

United Kingdom

For your business to be successful, you must manage your employees and their benefits as well as your employee representatives such as works councils and unions. Employers with occupational pension schemes also need to work with scheme trustees to manage liabilities, risk and member expectations.

Employment and pension law in the UK is complex, and our team of award-winning employment and pensions specialists can help you navigate the maze of regulations, new law, policy documents, pension fund structures and other legal complexities you must contend with on a daily basis.

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    Employee Incentives

    CMS has the largest number of partners dedicated to employee share plans in a City law firm. With over forty years’ combined experience as partners in their field, our team also stands out for the range of work it does. We each advise FTSE100 and multinational companies on their share plans and the public company M&A work that goes with that, but also advise start-ups, particularly in the tech and life sciences sectors and other companies which are private equity owned. We will work together with you to maximise the opportunities to reward employees in as tax-effective a way as possible and deliver their rewards cost-effectively.

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    No business can succeed without an effectively managed workforce. However, handling executive contracts, workplace grievances and disputes, reorganisations and restructurings, and employee competition within a constantly evolving legal framework is challenging. If your business crosses borders, you will be faced with additional legal hurdles.

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    Our award-winning pensions team is experienced in advising trustees, employers, consultants and insurers on all aspects of pensions law. As well as day-to-day advice, we have particular experience advising on benefit redesign, scheme closures and liability reduction. We are industry-leaders in longevity hedging, buy-in, buy-out, asset-backed funding, funds and corporate restructuring. Unlike other pension law practices, we work on litigation, as this enables us to brief clients in full on any potentially contentious issues and provides a balanced approach to our advice. CMS also leads the way on pensions de-risking transactions – acting on 8 of the 10 largest deals in 2019.

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    Workplace Mediation

    Conflict at work can be extremely time consuming and frustrating. It can also be expensive, particularly if it leads to absence and litigation. Many HR managers tell us that wish they could turn to an in-house mediation team and ask for help, but they don’t have the resources available.

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    Law-Now: Em­ploy­ment
    Vis­it Law-Now for leg­al know-how and com­ment­ary
    Law-Now: Pen­sions
    Vis­it Law-Now for leg­al know-how and com­ment­ary
    5 Golden Rules for Gender Pay Gap Re­port­ing


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    26 May 2020
    CMS Pen­sions Law­Cast
    27 April 2020
    CMS Ex­pert Guide to Gov­ern­ment Sup­port for Em­ploy­ers and Work­ers
    This ex­pert guide ex­plores the ways dif­fer­ent gov­ern­ments have at­temp­ted to al­le­vi­ate the stress the pan­dem­ic has im­posed on both em­ploy­ers and work­ers and en­sure busi­ness con­tinu­ity.
    11 June 2020
    Whis­tleblow­ing (We­bin­ar)
    We will look at why em­ploy­ers will need to be par­tic­u­larly aware of whis­tleblow­ing is­sues dur­ing lock­down and when staff re­turn to the work­place with the heightened aware­ness and sens­it­iv­ity around health and safety com­pli­ance and gov­ern­ment guid­ance. In
    03 June 2020
    Ex­e­cu­tion-only SIPP pro­vider not li­able to in­vestor
    The High Court has held that an ex­e­cu­tion-only SIPP pro­vider was not li­able to an in­vestor who sus­tained losses when he trans­ferred an ex­ist­ing pen­sion in­to a SIPP op­er­ated by the pro­vider. The de­cision...
    14 May 2020
    Plan­ning for the “new nor­mal” post lock­down
    As lock­down meas­ures are eased in Eng­land, em­ploy­ers have a great deal to con­sider when mak­ing de­cisions about how their busi­ness will op­er­ate. Read our check­list to identi­fy the key em­ploy­ment law is­sues.
    11 June 2020
    Em­ploy­ment lunch­time lock­down learn­ing series (we­bin­ar)
    The CMS Em­ploy­ment team is de­lighted to in­vite you to join us for “Lunch­time lock­down learn­ing” – a series of half hour “bites­ize” lunch­time we­binars.
    01 June 2020
    Stra­tegic guide: in­tern­al in­vest­ig­a­tions in the UK
    Whis­tleblower series In re­cent years there has been a sharp in­crease in in­tern­al in­vest­ig­a­tions in UK busi­nesses. This is in part due to an in­creased fo­cus on eth­ics and gov­ernance and, with­in cer­tain...
    14 May 2020
    Em­ploy­ers’ health and safety re­spons­ib­il­it­ies dur­ing the COV­ID-19 pan­dem­ic
    What are the key health and safety is­sues that an em­ploy­er should con­sider dur­ing the pan­dem­ic? Read our check­list set­ting out em­ploy­ers’ health and safety re­spons­ib­il­it­ies dur­ing the COV­ID-19 crisis.
    27 May 2020
    Im­port­ant new Elec­tric­al Safety Stand­ards in the Private Ren­ted Sec­tor
    Sum­mary The Elec­tric­al Safety Stand­ards in the Private Ren­ted Sec­tor (Eng­land) Reg­u­la­tions 2020 (“Reg­u­la­tions”) come in­to force on 1 June 2020 and im­pose du­ties on private land­lords of cer­tain res­id­en­tial...
    05 May 2020
    Cov­id-19 Li­quid­ity, Debt and Em­ploy­ment Meas­ures
    Coronavir­us (Cov­id-19) Li­quid­ity, debt and em­ploy­ment meas­ures in­form­a­tion from CMS. Find out more now.
    25 May 2020
    Le­gion­ella: man­aging the risks and re­open­ing safely
    The HSE has is­sued ad­vice con­cern­ing the in­creased risks of le­gion­ella arising from lock­down. This is caused in par­tic­u­lar by closed or re­duced oc­cu­pancy of build­ings. Em­ploy­ers, the self-em­ployed and...
    20 April 2020
    COV­ID-19 – Latest up­dates to CJRS
    In this note we sum­mar­ise the latest changes with­in the up­dated HM­RC guid­ance doc­u­ments con­cern­ing the Coronavir­us Job Re­ten­tion Scheme. Help­fully, we now have of­fi­cial guid­ance on both the ac­cru­al and pay­ment of hol­i­days dur­ing a fur­lough peri­od. The HMR