• At Kemp Little, we are known for our ability to serve the very particular needs of a large but diverse technology client base. Our hands-on industry know-how makes us a good fit with many of the world's biggest technology and digital media businesses, yet means we are equally relevant to companies with a technology bias, in sectors such as professional services, financial services, retail, travel and healthcare.
  • Kemp Little specialises in the technology and digital media sectors and provides a range of legal services that are crucial to fast-moving, innovative businesses.Our blend of sector awareness, technical excellence and responsiveness, means we are regularly ranked as a leading firm by directories such as Legal 500, Chambers and PLC Which Lawyer. Our practice areas cover a wide range of legal issues and advice.
  • Our Commercial Technology team has established itself as one of the strongest in the UK. We are ranked in Legal 500, Chambers & Partners and PLC Which Lawyer, with four of our partners recommended.
  • Our team provides practical and commercial advice founded on years of experience and technical know-how to technology and digital media companies that need to be alert to the rules and regulations of competition law.
  • Our Corporate Practice has a reputation for delivering sound legal advice, backed up with extensive industry experience and credentials, to get the best results from technology and digital media transactions.
  • In the fast-changing world of employment law our clients need practical, commercial and cost-effective advice. They get this from our team of employment law professionals.
  • Our team of leading IP advisors deliver cost-effective, strategic and commercial advice to ensure that your IP assets are protected and leveraged to add real value to your business.
  • Our litigation practice advises on all aspects of dispute resolution, with a particular focus on ownership, exploitation and infringement of intellectual property rights and commercial disputes in the technology sector.
  • We have an industry-leading reputation for our outsourcing expertise. Our professionals deliver credible legal advice to providers and acquirers of IT and business process outsourcing (BPO) services.
  • We work alongside companies, many with disruptive technologies, that seek funding, as well as with the venture capital firms, institutional investors and corporate ventures that want to invest in exciting business opportunities.
  • Our regulatory specialists work alongside Kemp Little’s corporate and commercial professionals to help meet their compliance obligations.
  • With a service that is commercial and responsive to our clients’ needs, you will find our tax advice easy to understand, cost-effective and geared towards maximising your tax benefits.
  • At Kemp Little, we advise clients in diverse sectors where technology is fundamental to the ongoing success of their businesses.They include companies that provide technology as a service and businesses where the use of technology is key to their business model, enabling them to bring their product or service to market.
  • We bring our commercial understanding of digital business models, our legal expertise and our reputation for delivering high quality, cost-effective services to this dynamic sector.
  • Acting for market leaders and market changers within the media industry, we combine in-depth knowledge of the structural technology that underpins content delivery and the impact of digitisation on the rights of producers and consumers.
  • We understand the risks facing this sector and work with our clients to conquer those challenges. Testimony to our success is the continued growth in our team of professionals and the clients we serve.
  • We advise at the forefront of the technological intersection between life sciences and healthcare. We advise leading technology and data analytics providers, healthcare institutions as well as manufacturers of medical devices, pharmaceuticals and biotechnological products.
  • For clients operating in the online sector, our teams are structured to meet their commercial, financing, M&A, competition and regulatory, employment and intellectual property legal needs.
  • Our focus on technology makes us especially well positioned to give advice on the legal aspects of digital marketing. We advise on high-profile, multi-channel, cross-border cases and on highly complex campaigns.
  • The mobile and telecoms sector is fast changing and hugely dependent on technology advances. We help mobile and wireless and fixed telecoms clients to tackle the legal challenges that this evolving sector presents.
  • Whether ERP, Linux or Windows; software or infrastructure as a service in the cloud, in a virtualised environment, or as a mobile or service-oriented architecture, we have the experience to resolve legal issues across the spectrum of commercial computer platforms.
  • Our clients trust us to apply our solutions and know-how to help them make the best use of technology in structuring deals, mitigating key risks to their businesses and in achieving their commercial objectives.
  • We have extensive experience of advising customers and suppliers in the retail sector on technology development, licensing and supply projects, and in advising on all aspects of procurement and online operations.
  • Our legal professionals work alongside social media providers and users in relation to the commercial, privacy, data, advertising, intellectual property, employment and corporate issues that arise in this dynamic sector.
  • Our years of working alongside diverse software clients have given us an in-depth understanding of the dynamics of the software marketplace, market practice and alternative negotiating strategies.
  • Working with direct providers of travel services, including aggregators, facilitators and suppliers of transport and technology, our team has developed a unique specialist knowledge of the sector
  • Your life as an entrepreneur is full of daily challenges as you seek to grow your business. One of the key strengths of our firm is that we understand these challenges.
  • Kemp Little is trusted by some of the world’s leading luxury brands and some of the most innovative e-commerce retailers changing the face of the industry.
  • HR Bytes is an exclusive, comprehensive, online service that will provide you with a wide range of practical, insightful and current employment law information. HR Bytes members get priority booking for events, key insight and a range of employment materials for free.
  • FlightDeck is our portal designed especially with start-up and emerging technology businesses in mind to help you get your business up and running in the right way. We provide a free pack of all the things no-one tells you and things they don’t give away to get you started.

Employees

The impact of the referendum on your employees will depend in the main on the nature of the model for our exit from the EU. If we leave the EU but stay within the European Economic Area (“EEA”) / single market (as is the case with Norway), then we are likely to remain bound by many EU employment laws and the principal of free of movement of workers as a condition of membership of the EEA / single market. The government’s stated position is that it wishes to try to negotiate some curbs on migration from EU member states. How realistic a bargaining position this is remains to be seen.

Nationals of EU member states who are already working in the UK

In the short-term, pending the outcome of the exit negotiations, the status quo will continue, with nationals of EU member states continuing to have the right to work in the UK and British nationals having the right to work across Europe.

Once we have negotiated our departure, it is likely that there will be transitional provisions, enabling EU nationals who are already in the UK to remain here (and likewise any British nationals already living and working in EU Member States to remain there), although the government has stated that it cannot guarantee this position.

We consider that the most likely outcome is that nationals of EU member states who were already in the UK on a certain date will be allowed to stay. That date is unlikely to be the date of the EU referendum (as those individuals entering the UK immediately after that date have done so on the reasonable expectation that they can remain) but will be some future date, possibly the date of invocation of Article 50 or the date we officially leave the EU.

Bringing nationals of EU member states to the UK in the future

Once we have left the EU (and especially if we are no longer part of the EEA / single market) it could become much more difficult to transfer nationals of EU member states to the UK. The government might well try to impose a system similar to the Points Based System which currently applies to nationals from outside the EEA. This would mean that (in most circumstances) only skilled workers with a specific job offer could come to the UK and such visas would be subject to a monthly cap on the number issued.

That said, if the outcome of the exit negotiations is that we remain within the EEA/single market (in a position similar to Norway), free movement of workers is likely to continue to apply as a condition of free trade so employers will still be able to bring nationals of EU member states to the UK without obtaining a visa (subject to any limits on free movement which the government is able to negotiate). 

Employee protections

Although many employment rights are derived from EU law, in practice English law often goes well beyond the minimum required by European law. In addition, European-derived rights are usually enshrined into English law by means of English legislation, meaning that they would not automatically fall away when we leave the EU – the English legislation would need to be repealed by the government of the day. In our view, the government is unlikely to have the appetite to repeal EU-derived employment rights in any significant fashion following our departure from the EU.

If we remain in the EEA/single market, it is likely that we would still be bound by EU employment law in any event, as a condition of access to the single market. In which case, little would change.

What might change?

If we don’t remain in the EEA/single market and the government is free to rip up employment laws derived from EU law, the areas most likely to be at risk are:

  • (a) TUPE (although the government didn’t take the opportunity to pare back this legislation when it had the chance in the past).
  • (b) the Working Time Regulations (which legislate for paid holiday and rest breaks).
  • (c) protections for agency workers.

Whether the employment law landscape will change will depend on the outcome of the negotiations and the model which is applied. In any event, the changes are unlikely to be dramatic (except in relation to hiring nationals of EU member states) and it may take some time for their effect to be felt. To find out more please get in touch with our Brexit working group.