Ex-KWM staff offered settlement over redundancy ‘technical breach’

by Sol Dolor11 Aug 2017
Former King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) employees have been offered compensation to settle a claim they made in in February over the way redundancies were handled as the firm’s European arm collapsed.

Legal Week, Legal Cheek, and The Lawyer report that around 200 former employees of KWM’s failed Europe, UK, and Middle East (EUME) business have been offered up to £3,832 (around $6,300) in compensation. Payment will be capped at £479 (about $790) per week, the maximum payment the UK’s Insolvency Service Redundancy Payment Office can make.

Quantuma, the administrators of the failed legacy SJ Berwin business, admitted that there was a “technical breach” in consultations regarding redundancies. In the UK, a formal 45-day consultation process is required before the termination of more than 100 jobs.

“Whilst [KWM] had commenced and undertaken a consultation process, the consultation had concluded early due to the onset of the firm entering administration. As a result, there was a technical breach in respect of the required duration for the consultation process,” Quantuma said.

Herrington Carmichael, the law firm that represents the former employees, has advised the group that the offer is “the maximum recoverable value available.” It recommended accepting the offer to avoid a full employment tribunal hearing. 

Quantuma is being advised in the administration process by law firms CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang and Ashfords.

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