Vivienne Reeve

Vivienne Reeve helps clients to manage challenging employment issues to minimise risk and improve employee relations. Whether clients need to make their business more effective through more flexible working policies, restructures or to reduce legal risk by resolving a dispute, Vivienne aims to introduce functional and pragmatic solutions.

Vivienne has a strong understanding of individual motivators for behaviours in the workplace and works closely with her clients to bring about the best outcomes in difficult situations, whether through restructures, investigations, exits or tribunal litigation. Her diverse client base incorporates both the public and private sector, from manufacturing, aviation, distribution, IT to social housing and large corporates, both UK based and international.

She has successfully represented clients in numerous tribunal claims (including whistle-blowing, unfair dismissal and complicated discrimination claims) and has particular experience in investigations (of both standard issues such as misconduct and absence and more complex fraud and accounting irregularities), change management, TUPE, severance agreements and managing sickness absence. Vivienne also helps bring her clients up to speed with ever-changing employment law, delivering training and drafting policy to reflect developments such as new parental leave legislation.

Working on the whole range of employment issues allows Vivienne to use her experience in each case to improve the next - advising on a Tribunal claim for a misconduct dismissal helps run a thorough investigation, working through a capability process helps her better draft policies and training programmes.

Highlights

An employment investigation that was conducted for an Italian parent company into their UK subsidiary CEO was both interesting and challenging. The individual involved was very evasive and tried to intimidate the employees interviewed during the investigation. They were worried about retaining their jobs if they talked to us about him, so we had to put a lot of effort into building up trust with employees to allow them to give us information. There was a large amount of contradictory evidence, but based on our final report and evidence he accepted he should resign and left on favourable terms for our client.

Negotiating the exit of senior individual for a US client. It was a difficult negotiation because we had to do the best deal possible while allowing the individual to save face. It looked like the deal may fall on a point of principle but little value, but we stuck to our guns and achieved a good deal without material concessions. After the matter had concluded Vivienne received an email from the client saying that Vivienne "had done the firm proud". 

Clients

Almost any business that needs advice regarding employment issues. Clients include registered providers of social housing, major airlines, software companies, automotive manufacturers, engineering companies, an investment house and even a satellite earth station.

Experience

  • Conducting investigations for local authority and private international clients relating to fraud, misconduct and breach of statutory procedures.
  • Business protection advice to international private sector clients.
  • Successfully defending discrimination and unfair dismissal claims.
  • Advising a major airline on a restructure to improve cost efficiency, while maintaining service levels and employee relations.
  • Advising clients in managing exits of senior individuals on a commercial basis.
  • Successfully defending multiple equal pay claims against a local authority and negotiating a mutually beneficial withdrawal and settlement plan with the unions.
  • Advising clients on drafting and implementing contracts and family friendly employment policies.
  • Training client teams on Mental Health at Work, Respect at Work, Discrimination & Equality, Tribunal process.

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:
  • 2018

    • Career
      July2018
      Gowling WLG (UK), principal associate
  • 2016

    • Career
      February2016
      Gowling WLG (UK), senior associate
  • 2015

    • Career
      2015
      Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co, senior associate
  • 2014

    • Career
      2014
      Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co, associate
  • 2007

    • Career
      2007
      Wragge & Co LLP
  • 2006

    • Education
      2006
      The College of Law, LPC
  • 2002

    • Community
      2002
      Pro bono work: former School Governor; Birmingham Legal Advice Clinic Advisor
    • Education
      2002
      University of Birmingham, LLB: Law with French