Helen Adams is a director in our Labour & Employment practice.

Helen provides strategic advice to employers. She acts for clients operating in various industries but has a particular interest in advising clients in the financial services sector. She prides herself on delivering commercial solutions that respect clients’ relationships with their various stakeholders (whether investor, regulator, the workforce as a whole or otherwise), particularly when the stakes are high and a situation has become acrimonious or reputationally sensitive.

Alongside day-to-day advice on all aspects of employment law, Helen is particularly experienced and has an interest in:

  • Managing the employment aspects of corporate transactions and restructurings, particularly those involving large-scale redundancies and employee transfers both within the UK and across multiple jurisdictions
  • Conducting grievance, disciplinary and whistleblowing investigations on behalf of clients, including those involving reputationally sensitive allegations of sexual harassment, discrimination, bullying and other “nonfinancial misconduct”, and reporting on her findings
  • Advising on the entry of senior and board-level individuals, including their remuneration and incentive arrangements and their entitlements on exit
  • Assisting with the resolution of senior and board-level disciplinary issues and disputes, including advising on the interplay with regulatory assessments of fitness and propriety, and conduct-rule breaches
  • Defending high-value discrimination claims brought in the Employment Tribunal
  • Advising on compliance with gender pay gap reporting and the FCA’s proposals concerning diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in financial services.

Helen sits on the management committee of the Employment Lawyers Association. She also chairs independent review panels for school exclusions in her local county. She is concerned about climate change and acts as sustainability champion for our Manchester office.

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  • Advising a fledgling financial institution on the establishment of all aspects of its HR function.
  • Advising on the purchase of a bank including face-to-face negotiation of the senior management team’s new service agreements.
  • Advising a client on the exit of a member of its executive leadership team including advice on complex bonus schemes and share-based remuneration.
  • Working closely with two preeminent QCs to assist an individual to launch a challenge to his restrictive covenants whilst seeking to retain his deferred compensation.
  • Providing a client with step-by-step guidance on the production of its first Gender Pay Gap Report.


  • Oxford University, Christ Church, M.A., Jurisprudence


  • England and Wales, 2012

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