Uncategorized Archives - MLP Law

Baldness – The New Frontier in Workplace Harassment?

Julie Sabba, an associate in the Employment Team, considers a recent Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) decision, Finn v The British Bung Company, and its implications for harassment on the grounds of gender in the workplace. She asks the question – is commenting on the fact that someone is bald, akin to commenting on the size of a woman’s breasts?

 

Facts

Tony Finn (TF), had worked for a manufacturing firm, The British Bung Company, for 24 years before being dismissed last May. TF raised various claims in the Employment Tribunal, including one of harassment, which related to the fact that his lack of hair had been commented on during an argument at work.

 

He stated that during an altercation with his supervisor he was threatened with being ‘decked’, sworn at and called ‘bald’. TF claimed that the use of the word bald amounted to harassment on the grounds of his sex.

 

Law

In essence, harassment under the Equality Act 2010 is where unwanted conduct has the purpose or effect of:

 

•violating the victim’s dignity or

 

•creating an environment that is intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive to the victim

 

The conduct must also be related to a protected characteristic, such as sex, race or age.

 

Decision

In arriving at its decision, the EAT upheld the original Tribunal Judge’s decision, which was that he determined that calling someone bald is an insult that amounted to harassment. He found that there is a connection between the word ‘bald’ on the one hand and the protected characteristic of sex on the other, due to the fact that baldness is much more prevalent in men than women.

 

The Judge concluded that baldness is inherently related to sex and that the derogatory comments in relation to TF’s appearance had been intended to hurt his feelings, and therefore amounted to harassment. The Judge continued by stating that commenting on a man’s baldness in the workplace is equivalent to remarking on the size of a woman’s breasts.

 

Comment

It is important to ensure that staff are aware that unpleasant or negative behaviour or comments towards colleagues are completely forbidden, whether they relate to appearance or to any other factor (such as mimicking the way someone talks). Policies promoting equality and diversity, underpinned by training, provide employers with the means to challenge accusations of discrimination between members of staff, in addition to encouraging a kind and collegiate atmosphere in the workplace.

 

If you would like advice from the Employment team at MLP Law, in respect of any of the issues raised here or more generally, please do not hesitate to get in touch on 0161 926 9969 or employment@mlplaw.co.uk, or follow us on Twitter @HRHeroUK.

 

 

Robot Solicitors…Is there space for Al in the legal sector?

Wondering what is going on in tech developments and how it is changing working practices for solicitors and law firms as well as changing service delivery for clients?  The piece below was written by AI tool ChatGPT…

The legal services sector in the UK has undergone a significant change in recent years, with the advent of new technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and chatbots, including ChatGPT. These technologies have the potential to revolutionise the way legal services are delivered to clients, making them more efficient, cost-effective, and accessible to a wider range of people.

One of the key ways in which AI and chatbots are changing the legal sector is through the automation of certain tasks. For example, AI can be used to analyse large amounts of data, such as legal documents, in a fraction of the time it would take a human to do the same task. This can significantly reduce the time and cost associated with legal research, making it more accessible to a wider range of clients. Similarly, chatbots can be used to automate repetitive or routine tasks, such as answering frequently asked questions, which can free up lawyers’ time to focus on more complex and nuanced issues.

Another way in which AI and chatbots are changing the legal sector is by making legal services more accessible to a wider range of people. However, it’s important to note that while these technologies have the potential to revolutionise the way legal services are delivered, they also present some challenges and concerns. For example, the use of AI and chatbots raises questions around the accuracy and reliability of the advice they provide. Additionally, there are concerns that the use of these technologies could lead to job losses in the legal sector, as certain tasks become automated.

In conclusion, the advent of new technologies such as AI and chatbots, including ChatGPT, is changing the way legal services are delivered in the UK. These technologies have the potential to make legal services more efficient, cost-effective, and accessible to a wider range of people. However, it’s important to consider the challenges and concerns that arise with the use of these technologies, and to find ways to address them in order to fully realize their potential benefits.

Everything you wanted to know about…Flexible Working Request…but were too afraid to ask!

Flexible working requests have been a useful tool for employees for many years, originally largely benefitting working mothers. More recently, however, with seismic changes to working practices during and following lockdown, a new approach to flexibility in working life is being embraced by both employers and employees, often through the mechanism of flexible working requests.

What is a Flexible Working Request?

In summary, an employee with at least 26 weeks’ continuous service has the statutory right under the Employment Rights Act 1996 to make an application or request to their employer for flexible working, i.e. to change their terms and conditions relating to:

  • how many hours they are required to work;
  • when they are required to work, and/or
  • where, as between their home and their employer’s place of business, that work is done.

By way of illustration, ACAS have helpfully outlined the most popular requests which are made by employees under the flexible working request legislation, which are to:

  • reduce hours to work part-time;
  • change their start and finish times;
  • have flexibility with start and finish times (sometimes known as ‘flexitime’);
  • work hours over fewer days (‘compressed hours’);
  • work from home or elsewhere (‘remote working’), or
  • share the job with someone else.

Within the bounds of a flexible working request, employees might ask for the change to be for:

  • all working days;
  • specific days or shifts only;
  • specific weeks only, e.g. during school term time (or during school holidays); or
  • a limited time, e.g. for six months only.

Who is eligible to make a statutory request?

An individual may only request flexible working under the statutory mechanism if they:

  • are an employee;
  • have at least 26 weeks’ continuous service;
  • are not an agency worker (unless they are returning to work from a period of parental leave); and/or
  • have not made a statutory request for flexible working during the previous twelve months.

All eligible employees have the right to request flexible working, whatever their circumstances and whatever their purpose in making the request. The employee’s purpose in making the request is no longer relevant to the exercise of the statutory right, although it may be relevant when the employer exercises its discretion as to whether to agree to the request.

How does an employee make a statutory flexible working request?

An eligible employee must comply with the following, when making a flexible working request:

  • say that it is a request for flexible working;
  • specify the change the employee would like to make;
  • give a date when the employee would like the change to happen;
  • explain what effect, if any, the employee thinks that the change will make to their employer and how any such change could be dealt with;
  • make the request in writing;
  • state whether a previous request has been made by the employee to the employer and, if so, when, and
  • make sure the request is dated.

Many employers provide a template form for employees to use when making such a request, to simplify the process for employees and also to ensure that they are provided with all the relevant information at the earliest opportunity. Certainly, it would not be advisable to reject a request due to a failure to meet any of these requirements and it is advisable to have a dialogue with the employee to elicit the further information required.

How should an employer respond to a statutory flexible working request

Once a valid request has been submitted, the employer:

  • must deal with it in a ‘reasonable manner’;
  • must notify the employee of its decision on the request within a period called the ‘decision period’; and
  • may only refuse the request if it considers that one or more of certain defined grounds for refusal applies.

The employer should, of course, acknowledge a flexible working request in writing, once it has been received, and set in train arrangements for discussing it with the employee.

What is meant by dealing with statutory flexible working requests in a “reasonable manner”?

The requirement on an employer that receives a flexible working request to ‘deal with [it]… in a reasonable manner’ is clearly a broadly-worded one, with no specific detail included in the statutory wording.

Nonetheless, an alleged failure to deal with such a request in a reasonable manner can provide the foundation for a claim to the employment tribunal by the employee who made the request. How an employment tribunal would construe this requirement, and adjudicate on whether or not there has been compliance by the employer with it, is therefore of crucial importance.

What is the timetable for notifying employees of the employer’s decision (the ‘decision period’)?

The employer must notify the employee of its decision on the employee’s request for flexible working within the ‘decision period’.

The decision period for a given request:

  1. begins on the date that the request is made, and
  2.  ends at the end of:
    • the period of three months beginning with that day, or
    • such longer period as may be agreed by the employer and the employee.

Any extension of the decision period beyond the standard three months must be agreed between the parties.

Provided there is compliance with the above conditions as to timing, this means that the decision period may be extended repeatedly and/or indefinitely, provided the parties both agree.

What are the grounds for refusing a statutory flexible working request?

An employer may only refuse a request for flexible working if it considers that one or more of the following grounds for refusal applies:

  • the burden of additional costs;
  • detrimental effect on ability to meet customer demand;
  • inability to re-organise work among existing staff;
  • inability to recruit additional staff;
  • detrimental impact on quality;
  • detrimental impact on performance;
  • insufficiency of work during the periods the employee proposes to work; and/or
  • planned structural changes, e.g. the employer intends to reorganise or change the business and thinks the request will not fit with these plans.

If the employer decides to reject the request, it would be well advised, in its notification of the decision to the employee, to:

  • state which of the above grounds apply, and
  • explain, in the case of each ground cited, why it considers it applies.

Given the breadth of legitimate grounds for refusal, it will often not be hard for the employer (if it so desires) to justify as legitimate any decision it takes to reject a request. However, the employer must also bear in mind the potential for discrimination and/or unfair dismissal claims, which will typically be of greater commercial significance.

Best practice and the spirit of dealing with flexible working requests in a reasonable manner suggests that employers should approach flexible working requests in good faith and with an open mind. Often, where a flexible working request cannot be accommodated, this will include proposing alternative flexible working arrangements which may still be supportive to the employee, even if they are not exactly what the employee has requested.

What are the cultural benefits of flexible working and in particular hybrid/home working?

Employers will often have little difficulty in finding a reason to refuse a flexible working request if it wishes to do so and although that may sometimes seem to be best for the business in the immediate to short term, there can be many benefits in having a more accommodating outlook to such requests.

The benefits of flexible working may include:

  • increased productivity and effectiveness;
  • less time (and money) spent commuting;
  • reduced absenteeism and ‘presenteeism’;
  • improved mental health and wellbeing, as well as physical fitness;
  • an improved work/life balance, e.g. more time spent with family, or on other activities; and/or
  • attracting and retaining key employees.

Please don’t hesitate to contact the team at MLP Law for detailed advice in connection with any of the issues raised above. You can reach us at employment@mlplaw.co.uk or @HRHeroUK or on 0161 926 9969.

A Week at MLP Law

During a break from my college education, I interned at MLP Law. I was introduced with a warm welcome from the Wills and Probates department and given an overview of MLP Law’s DNA and what I should expect to experience and learn during my time with the firm.

I began my internship by participating in training that consisted of the rules and regulations set out by the SRA and Money Laundering Regulations 2017. The training consisted of four courses, which were Equality and Diversity, SRA Codes of Conduct for Support Staff, UK GDPR and Anti-Money Laundering. This training ensured I had a good understanding of the rules and regulations that all law firms must adhere to.

Ella, a Trainee Solicitor, currently working in the Wills, Trusts and Probate department showed me an example of a Will and explained the law surrounding Will drafting and the importance of ensuring a lawyer pays close attention to detail when drafting legal documents.

I had the opportunity to attend a client meeting with Sophie, a Solicitor Apprentice who works in the Wills, Trusts and Probate department. It was interesting to watch how she interacts with the client, what the necessary procedures are for signing a Will and the importance of making sure Wills are thoroughly checked through with the client to ensure they achieve the client’s wishes.

With the Archive Administrator Emma, I looked over a Will that was dated 1935 and property Title Deeds dated from 1800s. It was incredibly interesting to see old legal documents and compare them to the format and wording of modern legal documents. I was shown how to use the electronic case management system, as well as organising and filing paper files.

Katie, a Licensed Conveyancer, demonstrated how to use the Land Registry website to obtain copies of the Title Register for properties and how to register forms with the Land Registry to change the ownership of a property.
In the employment department, Gareth, Partner, and Julie, Associate Solicitor, provided me with some background on what Employment Law is and what their job entails. To further develop my understanding of Employment Law, I was assigned a legal research task to write a report on what a disciplinary meeting is.

In summary my experience with MLP Law firm was a great experience from the friendly environment to working with a team who all are extremely passionate about their jobs and the firm.

Are Employees Entitled to an Extra Day of Holiday for the State Funeral?

With the passing of the Queen, at the age of 96, a bank holiday for her State Funeral has been announced, due to take place on 19th September 2022. With this in mind, employers want to understand if they must provide the additional day of annual leave to staff.

Essentially, UK law requires that all full time employees are entitled to a minimum of 28 days (or 5.6 weeks) of annual leave in each holiday year. A business can determine when that leave year should commence and end.

This right is reflected in the employee’s contract of employment but can be expressed in a variety of ways. Whether or not an employer will be contractually obligated to give an employee an extra day of annual leave, in respect of the State Funeral, will depend on that wording.

Certainty in Contractual Clauses:

Some clauses will be clear, for example, a contractual term entitling the employee to ‘20 days holiday per annum plus bank holidays’ will mean that the employer will be required to allow an employee an additional day of leave. Conversely, a term providing for ‘28 days holiday per annum, including all bank and public holidays’ will not.

Similarly, a contract that lists the bank holidays that are included in the employee’s entitlement (for instance, Christmas Day, Easter Monday etc), will mean that the employee will not be entitled to an extra day for this unique bank holiday. The same rationale applies to a contractual term entitling the employee to the bank holidays usually observed in England and Wales, as the bank holiday is not one that is usually observed.

Element of Choice for Employee:

If, however, the clause reads 20 days annual leave per year, plus 8 bank holidays, then the employee will be able to choose to take this bank holiday but it will be instead of another bank holiday at some other point in the year – the employee will not receive an extra day of leave.

That element of choice will also apply if the contract simply states that the employee is entitled to ’28 days annual leave per annum’. The employee can determine if they want to use one of their 28 days to observe the occasion of the Queen’s funeral.

Of course, nothing in the contract will prevent employers from generously adding an extra day of annual leave entitlement in honour of Her Majesty, although if this approach is adopted, employers should clarify in writing that the extra day is for 2022 only.

If you would like advice from the Employment team at MLP Law in respect of any of the issues raised here or more generally, please do not hesitate to get in touch on 0161 926 9969 or employment@mlplaw.co.uk, or follow us on Twitter @HRHeroUK.

Advising managers: how to suspend an employee

 

Our clients often ask us for practical tips on commonplace issues that occur in the workplace. One such request focuses on suspending employees at the outset of a disciplinary process for misconduct. With that in mind, Julie Sabba, an associate in the Employment team, sets out guidance on how to fairly suspend an employee, whilst minimising the risk of Employment Tribunal claims.

Introduction
A suspension is a period of time when an employee is required by their employer to abstain from their normal work. If the employee usually works at the employer’s premises, and/or out and about with customers, this means they will not attend their normal place of work during the suspension. If the employee normally works from home, it means that they will refrain from undertaking the normal tasks and duties associated with their work.
Suspension is used as a protective measure while the employer investigates allegations of serious misconduct against an employee, and the employer has reason to believe that the employee’s continued presence in the workplace or performance of duties may:

• impede the investigation into the allegations, or
• present a serious risk to the interests of the business, its customers, or other employees.

Legal Factors
In some circumstances, an employee may be able to claim their employer has breached their contract by suspending them.

The implied obligation to provide work
As long as the employee is paid, there is no general implied duty to provide work that applies in all circumstances. Rather, whether there is a right to work depends on the terms of the employment contract.

The implied duty of trust and confidence
There is an implied term in every employment contract that the employer must not enforce contractual provisions on unreasonable grounds. This means that, even if the employer has an express contractual right to suspend the employee, it must only exercise that right:
• on reasonable grounds and
• for no longer than is necessary.

Custom and practice/disciplinary policy guidance

Checking the company’s past practice (if any) on suspension is also advisable, to ensure that suspension for these kinds of allegations is normal and that, if not, there are distinguishing features about this situation which make suspension appropriate. This minimises the risk of an employee successfully arguing that the right to suspend is being used in such a way that it:

• breaches the implied duty of trust and confidence, or
• constitutes unlawful discrimination in relation to any protected characteristic

Alternatives
Alternatives to suspension should be considered, eg a temporary change in work location or duties while the investigation is carried out, or a period of leave. Care however should be taken that any changes are temporary, and could not be construed as a demotion, or in some way humiliating to the employee, to minimise the risk of the employee successfully arguing that the change is a breach by the employer of the implied duty of trust and confidence.

When is it appropriate?
Where a period of suspension with pay is considered necessary, this period should be as brief as possible and kept under review, and that it should be made clear that the suspension is not considered a disciplinary action.
Most disciplinary situations will not require suspension, and it should only be considered exceptionally if there is a serious allegation of misconduct and:

• there are reasonable grounds to believe that the employee might seek to tamper with or destroy evidence, influence witnesses and/or sway an investigation into the disciplinary allegation
• working relationships have severely broken down to the point that there is a genuine risk to other employees, property, customers or other business interests if the employee remains in the workplace, or
• the employee is the subject of criminal proceedings which may affect whether they can do their job

Practical Factors

Right to be accompanied
There is no legal right for an employee to be accompanied to a suspension meeting, however consideration should be given to allowing an employee to be accompanied if this is a reasonable adjustment for an employee with a disability.

When to suspend an employee
• During an investigation or when an allegation comes to light – It will often be necessary for an employee to be suspended as soon as an investigation has unearthed a serious matter that will be, or is likely to be, the subject of disciplinary action, even though the full investigation into that matter has not been completed. Continuing the investigation is not a flaw in the proceedings and does not render them unreasonable, provided that the employee is given a full and fair opportunity to engage with any new charges or new material which might emerge as a consequence of that process. That opportunity may be at the disciplinary hearing itself.

• Don’t be hasty – Before suspending an employee, the employer should undertake some preliminary investigations in order to establish if there is evidence to substantiate the allegations and justify the suspension. An ill-conceived or hasty suspension can result in a breach of contract claim by the employee.

• But don’t delay – Set against that, an unnecessary delay in suspending or a failure to suspend an employee, when there are allegations of gross misconduct pending against the employee, may prejudice the employer’s case if the employee is later dismissed without notice and the employee submits a claim for unfair dismissal to the employment tribunal. It can be hard to demonstrate that dismissal without notice was an appropriate disciplinary sanction if the employee was allowed to continue in the performance of their duties right up until the date of the dismissal.

Who should carry out the suspension?
In theory, anyone in the company with the employer’s authority to undertake the suspension may carry it out. In practice, the individual carrying out the suspension should have received proper training and should also be significantly senior to the employee who is to be suspended.

How to suspend an employee
It is important that the suspension is undertaken as a protective measure and is not conducted in the manner of a disciplinary sanction or in any manner likely to result in a breakdown of the mutual obligation of trust and confidence.
For this reason, suspension should always be with pay and the manner of the suspension should be carefully handled in order to minimise distress to the employee and to preserve the working relationship as best as possible.
Suspension can leave individuals feeling prejudged, demotivated and devalued. It should therefore only be used after very careful consideration.

The employer should:

• always make it very clear that suspension is not an assumption of guilt and is not considered a disciplinary sanction
• remind and reassure the individual that a fair procedure will follow in which their point of view will be listened to and fairly considered

Communication
When deciding when and how to communicate a decision about suspension, employers should bear in mind that some individuals may find it extremely distressing to be told they are suspended. It is good practice to encourage a suspended employee to access some immediate support and to offer help to do this, eg by offering to contact a colleague, friend or relative of their choosing to meet them immediately.

Maintain Confidentiality
The employer should keep the suspension confidential wherever possible. Confidentiality should be maintained regarding the details of the suspension, and information relating to it should only be provided on a ‘need-to-know’ basis.

Suspension Meeting
The person suspending the employee should convene a meeting with them. It is usually most convenient to do this just before work usually starts, or first or last thing during the working day, or over lunchtime, as the workplace is usually quietest at those times. At the meeting the person suspending the employee should explain:

• that they are to be suspended from work with immediate effect
• the reason for the suspension
• that it does not mean they think the employee is guilty
• that the suspension is not considered a disciplinary sanction
• an outline of the allegations under investigation
• the likely duration of the suspension
• the details of what they may and may not do while on suspension
• the employee’s entitlement to pay and benefits during suspension
• the possible outcomes following suspension (this is usually either reinstatement into their normal pattern of work or a requirement to attend a disciplinary hearing to discuss the allegations in more detail)
• that the details of the suspension will be confirmed in writing

If the employee works as part of a team, or is responsible for the management of other people, or in some other way their absence will impact on others, it is also good practice to agree:

• how their absence should be communicated, and
• how a temporary handover of particular responsibilities, tasks or projects should be put in place
For example, putting out a message to the team (and perhaps to relevant customers, as necessary) that states that the employee ‘has taken leave at short notice to deal with a personal matter’ can be an appropriate way to avoid the employee any embarrassment.
Throughout the suspension meeting, the person suspending should endeavour to remain calm and reassuring but at all times professional; such meetings are obviously delicate and need to be handled with great sensitivity. If the manner of the suspension is too brusque or harsh, this can contribute to a breakdown in the employment relationship, making it difficult for the employee to integrate back into the working environment if the allegations do not in fact lead to any disciplinary measures.

Once the suspension meeting is concluded, the person suspending the employee should usually accompany them while they gather any personal belongings and leave the premises. This should be undertaken as discreetly as possible, when the workplace is quiet.

In addition to communicating, as necessary, the employee’s absence, and putting in place arrangements to cover their work (as discussed above), measures may need to be put in place to restrict their access to the employer’s IT systems.

Confirm in Writing
The details of the suspension as outlined in the suspension meeting must then be confirmed in writing to the employee. This letter should emphasise that the act of suspending the employee does not in any way imply that they are guilty of any misconduct, or that any decisions have been made, but rather is a purely protective measure while the employer investigates the allegations.

• keep regular contact with the employee throughout their suspension
• name a person, such as the employee’s manager, whom they can contact if they have any concerns
• as well as encouraging the employee to access immediate support when they are told about their suspension (as mentioned above), consider the employee’s wellbeing and mental health

The length of a suspension
In most circumstances the period of suspension should be as brief as possible and kept under review. It should not exceed any maximum period that may be set out in the contract of employment or the employer’s disciplinary procedure.
In the event of an investigation being particularly complicated, it may be acceptable to extend the period of suspension (eg if during the investigation new evidence of misconduct comes to light which requires further investigation) but the reasons for any extension should be properly reviewed and documented so that the employer can justify its necessity. The employee should also be informed, in writing, of any extension to the period of suspension, and the reason(s) why the employee considers the extension necessary.
In one particular case, the fact that a suspended employee had addressed the allegations against them at a subsequent meeting, but the employer had not then lifted the suspension, was one factor that led the employment tribunal to conclude that the employer had breached the contract of employment.

An excessively long period of suspension makes it less likely that the employee will be able to integrate back into the working environment if the allegations against them do not in fact lead to any disciplinary measures.

Pay during suspension
During any period of suspension an employee must be provided with the pay and benefit entitlements to which they would have been entitled if they had not been suspended. The withholding of pay and benefits may make it more likely that the suspension will be viewed as an impermissible disciplinary sanction and could lead to accusations that the disciplinary procedure was unfair.

Record keeping requirements
Accurate written records should be maintained of:

• the reason for the suspension
• the duration of the suspension, including any reviews that were conducted in relation to it
• all communication that takes place with the employee during the period of suspension
• the outcome of the suspension
These records will be important in the event that:

• the employer later needs to defend a breach of contract claim by the employee, and/or
• the employee suffers stress as a result of the suspension and the employer needs to manage that situation
These records should be retained for as long as reasonably required (and no longer), in accordance with the employer’s data protection policy and procedures.

Challenging a suspension
An employee may seek to challenge their suspension, eg because of the effect that it may have on their work and their reputation. Employers should therefore ensure that in suspending an employee they comply with both the express terms of the particular contract and also with the implied term of trust and confidence.

If you would like advice from the Employment team at MLP Law in respect of any of the issues raised here or more generally, please do not hesitate to get in touch on 0161 926 9969 or employment@mlplaw.co.uk, or follow us on Twitter @HRHeroUK.

What is MLP Doing for the Community?

You may have heard about our new Charity of the Year, and we wanted to tell you a little bit more about some of our aims and objectives within the community for this exciting year ahead.

First off, we are aiming on offsetting our carbon footprint. We are aware of the dangers of global warming and we would like to do our part in reducing that risk. We have made small changes in and around our offices, which will lead to a much larger positive impact. We have changed all paper used in the office to eco-friendly and are reducing the amount we use and print. We have hybrid working in place for our colleagues, which helps us reduce the carbon emissions from their cars driving to and from the office and we are enforcing the switch off, of unnecessary lights and electrical items in our office to reduce the amount of wasted energy.

For those who visit Altrincham you may have also noticed we now have a planter on Stamford New Road outside of Altrincham Interchange and opposite Pure Gym, which too is, helping us offset our carbon footprint and make a change.

Next, we are aiming to give one company with a local community focus or interest, free legal assistance in the areas of commercial, corporate or employment law and will select a specialist to work closely with you dependant on your requirements.

We will announce whom we have chosen the first week of June 2022. If you would like to be considered please call us on 0161 926 9969 or alternatively email us on ameliad@mlplaw.co.uk.

Finally, we have officially picked our charity of the year who are close within our community. This year we gave our colleagues the chance to decide. During the year we will be doing events to raise money for our charity and for those that have visited our offices for meetings, they may have noticed our colleagues in casual attire on a Thursday, and this is just one of the ways we are aiming to raise money for our charity. We are asking our colleagues to dress down on a Thursday and bring a donation in for us to put towards our charity of the year.

We are also encouraging our colleagues to raise money for our charities by running the Manchester Marathon in April 2023 whether this be a relay or full marathon.

In MLP, we enjoy seeing the positive affect we have on the environment and our communities by making changes and helping those around us. This is just a small percentage of what our team has planned for this year ahead and they are working hard to ensure we are always doing the right thing.

We would love to hear your suggestions on what changes and help MLP can have to our community and the environment. If you happen to have any, email us on katied@mlplaw.co.uk or alternatively call 0161 926 9969.