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Call: 2013
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Georgina Leadbetter
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GEORGINA LEADBETTER

Georgina specialises in employment and commercial litigation. Since joining chambers in October 2015 she has been instructed on matters in the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, High Court, Employment Appeal Tribunal, and employment tribunals and county courts.

Clients and instructing solicitors have praised Georgina’s “professional, calm and assured manner” and “extremely valuable strategic advice”, noting “she consistently produced work of the highest standard” and remarking “we could not have been more impressed” by her representation.

Georgina’s recent and current work includes:

  • Boath v Barclays: Ongoing whistleblowing and bonus claims relating to events of 2008 and SFO investigation (see coverage here)(led by Jonathan Cohen QC).
  • Campbell v Secretary of State for Justice: Represented the successful Claimant in discrimination proceedings arising from a prison officer being rendered unable to work after being seriously assaulted on duty (sole counsel, against counsel on Attorney General’s B Panel).
  • Department of Work and Pensions v Mughal UKEAT/0343/15/JOJ: Represented the Claimant in full hearing before the EAT concerning reinstatement and contributory fault and the reliance by the tribunal on matters not canvassed at the hearing (sole counsel, against counsel on Attorney General’s B Panel).
Having worked at law firms before and during her time at the Bar, Georgina understands the need to be responsive and client-focused in her advice and enjoys working in collaboration with her instructing solicitors. She spent a year working at Bates Wells Braithwaite LLP and WeirFolds LLP (Toronto) before her pupillage, and recently completed a secondment to the employment department of a leading City law firm.
 

    High Court Employment

Georgina has experience of High Court employment litigation beyond her year of call.

She has experience of the entire life-cycle of High Court employment disputes, from advising upon the discovery of the alleged breach to applying for interim relief (on notice and without notice) and proceeding to an expedited trial. Her knowledge of the law, commercial reality and strategy of such claims is drawn from having litigated High Court employment disputes from both barrister and solicitor perspectives, and having acted for both Claimants and Defendants.

Georgina’s experience includes:

  • Arthur J Gallagher Insurance Brokers Ltd and others v Aston Scott Group Ltd and others: Acted for three defendants in an application for interim relief to enforce restrictive covenants in the insurance industry (led by Gavin Mansfield QC).
  • Praxis Capital Ltd v Burgess [2015] EWHC 2631: Part of the legal team representing the successful Defendant at trial in a case concerning alleged breaches of post-termination restrictions and obligations of confidentiality in the investment management industry (as a pupil, assisting Daniel Tatton Brown).
  • Prepared an application for injunctive relief arising out of misappropriation of confidential information from an international publisher.
  • Resisted an application for injunctive relief in an oil and gas industry dispute.
  • Represented the successful Respondent in employment tribunal litigation arising from an employee’s attempts to set up a software company in competition with his employer.

    Statutory Employment

Georgina is regularly instructed to advise and represent clients in all areas of statutory employment law including unfair dismissal, redundancy, discrimination, whistleblowing and TUPE.

Georgina’s cases frequently involve issues of particular sensitivity and significance, such as alleged criminal wrongdoing on the part of employer or employee.  She is experienced in seeking and resisting measures such as hearings in private, restricted reporting orders and anonymity orders as appropriate.

Her recent experience includes:

  • Boath v Barclays: Ongoing whistleblowing and bonus claims relating to events of 2008 and SFO investigation (see coverage here)(led by Jonathan Cohen QC)
  • Campbell v Secretary of State for Justice: Represented the successful Claimant in discrimination proceedings arising from a prison officer being rendered unable to work after being seriously assaulted on duty (sole counsel, against counsel on Attorney General’s B Panel).
  • Department of Work and Pensions v Mughal UKEAT/0343/15/JOJ: Represented the Claimant in full hearing before the EAT concerning reinstatement and contributory fault and the reliance by the tribunal on matters not canvassed at the hearing (sole counsel, against counsel on Attorney General’s B Panel)
  • McAlinden v Lazarov and others: Represented the successful Respondent in the first case on whether fringe theatre actors in a profit share production are workers. This case generated national interest and was reported by the BBC, The Independent and The Stage.
  • Represented the Respondent (a well-known charity) in constructive unfair dismissal claim in which the claim settled immediately after Georgina’s cross-examination of the Claimant.
  • Appeared for the Claimant in tribunal proceedings concerning discrimination on the basis of EU nationality (settled in advance of final hearing).
  • Represented the successful Respondent (a regulatory body) in proceedings concerning numerous allegations of disability discrimination.
  • Acted for a Claimant seeking a redundancy payment as a result of a recent NHS restructuring (ongoing).
  • Acted for a Managing Director claiming automatically unfair dismissal relating to his functions as a pension fund trustee (settled in advance of a final hearing).
  • Advised on and litigating highly sensitive situations involving allegations of discrimination made by current employees (including allegations relating to flexible shift requirements, missed promotion opportunities and pay).

    Commercial

Georgina frequently acts in commercial disputes (both as a junior and as sole counsel), including those raising questions of contractual construction and rectification, partnership, and fiduciary and directors’ duties. She has particular experience of anti-suit injunctions.

Georgina brings to her practice the experience of large-scale commercial litigation she gained whilst at WeirFoulds LLP (Toronto), where she assisted on matters including a Competition Bureau investigation into criminal bid-rigging, a Privy Council appeal, and a class action against General Motors Canada Limited.

Georgina’s recent work includes:

  • Instructed to seek relief from sanctions in a music industry dispute.
  • Assisted with successful application for freezing injunction arising from non-payment of a significant business loan.
  • Assisted BT with large-scale litigation relating to the entitlement of utility companies to recover the costs of repairing negligent damage to their networks.
  • Represented the Defendant in a dispute arising from alleged breach of a software license contract (sole counsel).
  • Successfully defended county court proceedings brought in breach of a settlement agreement (sole counsel).
  • Assisted with partnership disputes, including drafting particulars of claim in an accountancy firm dispute and advising on a claim arising from a merger of firms of solicitors (sole counsel).

Georgina has an interest in civil fraud work and in 2017 attended the C5 Fraud, Asset Tracing and Recovery conference in Geneva (supported by the Commercial Bar Association International Grant Programme).

    Charity Law

Georgina has particular experience of advising and representing charities and not-for-profit clients. Before pupillage she worked at Bates Wells Braithwaite LLP, a leading firm in the charity sector, and assisted a variety of charities and not-for-profit clients with employment and employment-related disputes.

Recent and current cases in this sector include:

  • Represented a well-known charity in a constructive unfair dismissal claim which settled immediately after Georgina’s cross-examination of the Claimant.
  • Securing a costs order in favour of an educational foundation in order to recover charitable funds spent on defending meritless employment tribunal litigation.
  • Represented a learning disabilities charity in relation to a number of discrimination claims brought by a nurse (case ongoing)
  • Represented a health care charity in relation to claims brought by an unsuccessful job applicant.
Georgina is a member of the Charity Law Association.

    Regulatory/Disciplinary

Georgina has experience of acting for regulators and professional bodies in relation to disciplinary proceedings and related tribunal and High Court litigation. Recent and current clients include the General Dental Council and Solicitors Regulation Authority.

    Education, Scholarships and Prizes

Scholarships and Prizes

  • Harold G Fox Scholarship (2013-2014) (working in litigation department of WeirFoulds LLP, with secondment to the Court of Appeal for Ontario)
  • Evan Ashfield Memorial Prize for"outstanding” representation in employment tribunal cases (2012-2013)
  • Inner Temple Major Scholarship (2012-2013)
  • Inner Temple Duke of Edinburgh Entrance Award (2012-2013)
  • Winner, Inner Temple Pepperdine Moot (2012)
  • Finalist, Inner Temple Lawson Moot (2013)
  • Inner Temple Exhibition Award (2011-2012)
  • City University/11 King’s Bench Walk Prize for Public Law (2011-2012)

Education

  • 2012-2013 Bar Professional Training Course (Outstanding)
  • 2011-2012 Graduate Diploma in Law (Commendation)
  • 2008-2011 BA English, University of Cambridge (2:1)

    Professional Memberships

  • ELA
  • ELBA
  • COMBAR
  • Charity Law Association
  • London Common Law and Commercial Bar Association (LCLCBA)
  • Government Legal Department's Junior Junior Barrister Scheme
  • Bar Pro Bono Unit
  • Free Representation Unit

    Recent Talks

Georgina regularly gives talks and seminars. Examples include:
  • Anti –Suit Injunctions: Getting Results in Multi-Jurisdiction Disputes (at the Jamaican Bar Association, with Frank Walwyn)
  • Employment Litigation in the High Court (at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, with Chesca Lord)
  • Social Media and Employment issues (at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, with David Reade QC)
  • Six Recent Employment Cases (at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP with Craig Rajgopaul and Sophia Berry)
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