Liz Wood

Liz Wood is a senior lawyer working in across the firm's pensions and employment teams. She is one of the lawyers in the firm's unique Combined Human Resources Solutions team; specialist lawyers who focus on the crossover between pensions and employment law issues.

She helps employers to:

  • manage complex benefit change exercises;
  • manage their obligations on business sales and outsourcings, particularly in relation to the impact of TUPE;
  • negotiate TUPE clauses in outsourcing/insourcing and commercial agreements using a protective (for the client) yet pragmatic approach;
  • communicate change clearly and effectively to their workforce, including managing large scale pensions and employment consultation exercises and contractual changes;
  • avoid discrimination issues by offering practical, commercial advice.

Liz is also an advisor to a number of trustee clients in relation to their occupational pension schemes, including the management of scheme liabilities, scheme governance and general assistance for trustees in finding their way through the complex pensions law affecting trustees.

Experience

  • Regularly advising clients on age discrimination issues arising in relation to workplace employment and benefits.
  • Regularly advising an internal property management provider on its TUPE obligations, including negotiating the TUPE terms of property management and facilities management contracts.
  • Regular corporate support advice on TUPE matters, with particular experience of advising on Beckmann/Martin liabilities.
  • Advising employers on their options where employees have protections, such as protected person status under the Railways Pension Scheme or the 'indefeasible right'.
  • Helping a major housing association on the employment and pensions issues arising on various mergers with other small housing associations - including managing TUPE transfers, pension scheme liabilities and effective communications with employees.
  • Working with a trade union to review its pension scheme arrangements. Advising on the employment and pensions law issues arising.
  • Advising a manufacturing client on a post merger streamlining of its pension provision. The client benefited from Liz's ability to advise on both the employment and pensions law aspects of the exercise. This involved a pensions consultation, consideration of the TUPE/pensions requirements and careful communication of the changes with the affected employees.
  • Assisting a brewing client with the closure of its three defined benefit pension schemes in order to help it better manage its ongoing pension liabilities - the work involved selling the advantages of scheme closure to the trustees, the trade union and employee representatives.
  • Working with trustees and a sponsoring employer to better manage its pension liabilities by working on an enhanced transfer value exercise and pensions increase exchange exercise.
  • Helping a large retail client to introduce a salary sacrifice arrangement for its pension scheme. The client needed particular help in understanding its duties in relation to potential discrimination issues in relation to salary sacrifice.
  • Working on a large scale scheme closure project for a large manufacturing employer who is considering managing their defined benefit pension scheme liabilities.
  • Advising a national supermarket on implementation of its introduction of automatic enrolment. This affected 135,000 employees and involved a new pension scheme being set up, along with a ground-breaking communication exercise encouraging the workforce to understand more about financial planning and saving for retirement. Liz project managed our advice, which involved 12 lawyers from across the firm.

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:
  • 2018

    • Career
      December 2018
      Gowling WLG (UK) LLP, principal associate
  • 2016

    • Career
       2016
      Gowling WLG (UK) LLP, director
  • 2014

    • Career
       2014
      Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co, associate
  • 2006

    • Career
       2006
      Wragge & Co, associate
  • 2004

    • Career
       2004
      Eversheds
  • 2001

    • Education
       2001
      Nottingham Law School, Postgraduate diploma in law and legal practice course
  • 1998

    • Education
       1998
      University of Sheffield, BA History