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If you’d like to learn more about our employment and employee law services, and the lady who heads this growing department, then you’re in luck. I’ve sat down with Bethan Southcombe, our Head of Employment, for a Q&A. Check out the interview below.


Can you briefly introduce yourself?

I qualified as an employment solicitor in 2006. I studied part time whilst working at a Cardiff law firm and have specialised in employment law since 1999. After qualifying I worked in Bristol for three years before returning to Cardiff.

I have experience in advising both employers and employees on all aspects of employment law, including TUPE transfers, sickness absence, disciplinary and grievances, discrimination, dismissals, settlement agreements and representing clients at employment tribunals. I also have experience dealing with trade unions.

I enjoy the HR aspect of my role advising many companies on their employment and HR issues, giving me a wide range of experience and knowledge of different industries.

I am a mum to a little girl, and between being a taxi service for her, I enjoy reading, exercising and eating out.


Why employment law?

I accidently fell in to employment law. I had never thought about it as an area before, but within two weeks I was really enjoying it and decided this is where I wanted to specialise.


Why is it important for employers to have legal advice?

In the age of Google, everyone thinks they are an employment law expert. Employees know their rights and are not afraid to assert those rights. It is therefore important that employers seek legal advice to ensure that they are not leaving themselves open to an employment tribunal claim.


When should an employer seek legal advice?

Employers should preferably take advice before they take any action. If this is not possible, they should seek advice as soon as possible. There is no point delaying the inevitable.


What is the purpose of your free seminars?

Employment law can be a minefield. The aim of these seminars is to give employers an insight in to the current law and how it affects them. It is also a nice way of meeting people, so they can see that employment solicitors are actually nice and approachable people.

Businesses are wary of expensive consultancy fees. Can you allay any fears potential readers may have about costs?
Solicitors do have a bad press with fees, but they are not as high as the press likes to make out. Dealing with an issue early on can stop a situation escalating and therefore the fees will be lower.

At Howells we offer retainer packages for business, where we support businesses with the day-to-day HR and employment law support needed for a fixed fee. We also have available insurance which covers the cost of any employment tribunal claims.


What are the benefits of attending the seminar?

You will have an update as to the current legislation. You will also be able to meet people from different businesses who may be in the same situation as you and, of course, you will get to meet some of my lovely team and ask us questions.


If people cannot attend any of the seminar dates, what should they do?

If you cannot attend, then we can arrange to meet you or speak to you over the telephone if you do have any questions. Get in touch with the Howells team today.

With effect from 15th February 2015 EU Regulations on Consumer Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) allow consumers who bought our services online to submit their complaint via an online complaint portal.

We are required under the regulations to provide our clients the following information:-
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