Michelle is a skilled and highly regarded employment lawyer, with over twenty years’ experience in advising clients on a broad range of non-contentious and contentious employment law matters. She has particular expertise in negotiating and advising on settlement agreements, Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal litigation concerning whistleblowing and discrimination, restrictive covenants and confidentiality provisions including litigation in the High Court and TUPE. She is a specialist adviser to recruitment businesses and recruitment professionals, giving strategic business modelling advice on the employment law issues associated with the structuring of businesses which supply personnel, including terms of business with hirers and work-seekers, right through to drafting and advising on restrictive covenants and disputes on terms and conditions. Michelle has a particular interest in advising on sexual assault and sexual harassment misconduct in the workplace.
Michelle is a regular contributor to the press and legal journals and has been published in The Times, Financial Times, Employment Law Journal, CIPD and The Lawyer, among many others. She is also an avid speaker on employment law issues relating to sexual assault and sexual harassment, TUPE, discrimination, restrictive covenants and redundancy and has featured on BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC Radio Essex, and LBC.
Michelle has worked on several high-profile cases including Forse v Secarma, Philip v Working Partners and Harper Collins Publishers and Allonby v Accrington & Rossendale College.
Michelle helped us out at short notice with a partnership separation agreement. She was great! Very responsive and took us through the implications in a way that we could understand. Michelle also coped well with last minute changes in drafts of the various documents.
Jonathan Ruddle, Owner
I was introduced to Michelle through a professional contact and I cannot recommend her highly enough. Her passion and belief in what is right and wrong is both admirable and encouraging when dealing with the intricacies of employment law. She went above and beyond for me; including a late night coffee to settle a dispute - Thank you.
Alex Odwell, Managing Director
I have used Michelle on a number of occasions and found her to be efficient, effective, personable, prompt and generally impressive. Thoroughly recommended.
Tim Miller, Joint CEO
Michelle represented me in a dispute with my employer. Despite surprisingly aggressive and acrimonious tactics from my employer, Michelle remained calm, clear headed and positive throughout the process through to conclusion. Professionally and personally I found Michelle's approach consistently helpful. Consequently, it is easy to recommend Michelle.
Mike Milne, Senior Lecturer, Television
University of West London
I work with Michelle in my role as HR Director at Air Partner plc. Michelle has provided excellent advice (often at short notice) on numerous challenging employment issues. These have included everything from general contractual and policy advice, employee relations issues, redundancy and restructuring programmes and complex restrictive covenant and non-compete situations. Michelle has a very commercial and pragmatic approach and I have always found her advice to be credible, clear and suitably detailed for the relevant audience
Rachel Thripp, Group HR Director
Air Partner plc
Michelle is very practical, experienced, supportive and easy to work with. I have no hesitation in recommending her and will reach for her number myself should the need arise again.
Tom Laidlaw, EVP Digital
Aspire Business Partnership LLP has used the specialist advice of Michelle Last in relation to complex employment law principles on several occasions. We always find Michelle’s advice to be practical and can rely on her to relate our query to relevant case law and related issues. She always considers the wider picture and we are pleased to recommend her.
Karen Weston, Senior Manager
Aspire Business Partnership LLP
Michelle provided me with quality, legal advice which was also commercially astute and enabled me to save a significant sum or money. I would thoroughly recommend her.
Stephen Grosvenor, Chief Operating Officer
Five Rivers Child Care
Michelle did some employment work for me and was incredibly efficient, professional and thorough.
Peter Spencer, UK & Ireland Managing Director
I have always found my dealings with Michelle extremely friendly and professional. She is always on hand to give sound legal advice and turn around legal letters both accurately and quickly!
Stuart Springall, HR Executive
Working with Michelle has been a real pleasure. Michelle is a highly experienced lawyer, which combined with being understanding and engaged, you have all you need. She can really make the difference thanks to her soft approach, great manners, technical skills, attention to detail and super strong commitment. Most importantly, she always puts always her customer first. I strongly recommend Michelle as a lawyer
- Confidential information and restrictive covenants
- Advising recruitment businesses on contracts and business structuring
- Employment status
- Employment contracts and policies
- Garden leave obligations
- Termination packages for executives and employees
- Workplace disciplinary and grievance issues
- Collective and individual redundancies
- Litigation in the Employment Tribunal
- High Court litigation
- Restructuring and redundancies
- Advising numerous employers and recruitment businesses on employment regulations, employment status, contractual terms and restrictive covenant disputes.
- Advised a freelance consultancy business on the key employment law issues and issues relating to Conduct Regulations, to help restructure the business operation, to include drafting terms and conditions of employment with hirers and work-seekers.
- Acted for an online platform based recruitment business, Stint, on employment law issues and terms and conditions with hirers and work-seekers relating to its app-based business and designed an employment business model to enable them to operate in the most effective way.
- Advising Unilever on multi-million pound global outsourcing issues.
- Advising an individual on her claim for pregnancy discrimination against the European Commission, which attracted media attention all over the globe.
- Successfully secured a substantial six figure settlement in a disability discrimination case brought by a cancer patient against a financial services institution.
- Acted for a retail business defending a claim for pregnancy and maternity discrimination before the Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal.
- Acting for one of the world’s largest insurance brokers in four separate High Court interim-relief applications for misuse of confidential information and breaches of restrictive covenants, including drafting witness statements, pleadings, correspondence and settlement agreements and conducting disclosure exercises.
- Represented a client in a dispute with an employment agency regarding temp to permanent fees.
- Represented a recruitment consultant in a High Court claim relating to alleged breach of covenants and misuse of confidential information in establishing his own recruitment practice.
- Advised on a settlement agreement case involving the editorship of leading global news website.
- Acted for a client in the Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeal Tribunal and the Court of Appeal in a claim for unfair dismissal.
- Advising SME Invoice Finance on the employment law aspects of its acquisition by Metro Bank.
- Advising the employee representatives and over 40 employees on the employment law aspects of the transfer of their employment from JP Morgan to Mercuria.
- Successfully secured a substantial six figure settlement in a whistleblowing allegation against a financial services institution.
- Advising seven employees on the termination of their employment by Nomura following a redundancy exercise.
- Advising the administrators of Comet on the employment law issues on the collective redundancy of 6,500 employees and on complex TUPE issues.
- Advising a global shipping company on collective redundancy and TUPE consultation and jurisdictional issues.
- Advising an international energy company on the closure of a mine in Wales, with over 250 job losses, including advising on collective and individual redundancy obligations, negotiations with trade unions and drafting communications.
- Represented a departing director as part of a complex and highly sensitive team move case in the High Court.
- Advising a London brewery on the employment aspects of its acquisition of its first cider farm.
Please note: The experience list above may include examples of work completed prior to joining Keystone Law.
Recognised by The Legal 500 2022 for Employment: Senior Executives
Recognised by The Legal 500 2021 for Employment: Senior Executives
Recognised in The Legal 500 2020 for Employment: Employers
Michelle is a member of the Employment Law Association.
Michelle qualified as a solicitor in 2004. Prior to joining Keystone Law in 2015, she worked at the following firms:
- Stevens & Bolton
- Mayer Brown International