Jason Searle – Head of Employment

Email: clerk@stjohnsbuildings.co.uk

Phone: 0161 214 1500

Year of call: 1993

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“Well versed in handling very high-profile employment cases and frequently appears in the Employment Tribunal, EAT and High Court. In recent years, he has become known for his expertise in the legal ramifications of social media in the workplace”.

Strengths: “He is succinct and articulate in his preparation of pleadings and advice”. Chambers & Partners 2017

“Very approachable, thorough in his preparation and an excellent advocate” Legal 500 2016

Head of Employment Law Team

Jason Searle is a specialist employment and equality law barrister, representing employers and employees in employment and HR litigation. He generally acts for high net worth individuals, law firms (and other professional advisory firms) and a range of FTSE listed companies/SMEs. He is proud to be the head of the St Johns Building’s Employment Law Team and immensely enjoys the responsibility of this role.

Legal 500 2014: ‘His advice is always thought through, pragmatic and realistic’.

Jason is particularly committed to trying to ensure that the Bar is representative of the community it serves. He has spent three years on the pupillage committee and is a volunteer speaker for schools for the Bar Council. He spent two years working at a Law Centre.

Jason spent three years with UK Special Forces.

Memberships

Employment Law Bar Association
Employment Lawyers Association

Expertise

  • Employment

    Jason acts for employers and employees, with an even split.  Jason has a wealth of experience of discrimination cases.  He has successfully resisted and presented claims brought by doctors and senior NHS executives.  He has been responsible for presenting some of the most heinous campaigns of discriminatory treatment before the employment tribunals.

    Jason has become the ‘lawyer’s lawyer’ and is regularly instructed by solicitors privately and in house barristers.  He has advised in cases for and against National firms of solicitors and is often against Leading Counsel.  He has acted in cases involving National Security and has been responsible for training solicitors and others in discrimination law.  He frequently appears in the Employment Tribunal; EAT; County Court and High Court.

    Jason is also an expert in Social Media in the Workplace and the legal ramifications for employers and employees.  He has handled a number of cases where the use of Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and other social networks has led to disciplinary action (including dismissal) by an employer, leading to Employment Tribunal cases.  He is frequently called upon to advise when solicitor’s employee clients find themselves accused of IT misuse.

    Jason has also appeared in regulatory and disciplinary tribunals.  He has advised teachers, doctors, nurses and those involved with FCA compliance.

    Royal Mail Group PLC; NHS Trusts; Local Authorities, Police and Prison Services are just some of his regular clients.

    Jason is accredited by the Bar Council to undertake direct public access work and has advised and represented a significant number of SMEs and individuals on this basis.

    Cases

    Ashby v Cathelco Ltd (2011):  Sexual discrimination and constructive dismissal. Click here for press coverage.

    Davies v Burnley Borough Council (2009) All ER (D) 186 (Aug):  On issues of reasonableness and compensation.

    Lee & Dodds v. Iceland Frozen Foods PLC EAT 1147/00:  On issues of Res Judicata and cause of action estoppel.

    Manchester Evening News front pages:

    Nissan GB: http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/nissan-car-dealership-bosses-deny-801135.

    Sale Private Day Nursery: http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/sale-private-day-nursery-staff-1741043.

    Jason was also involved at the unfair dismissal stage of the Fecitt litigation which remains one of the leading authorities on whistleblowing.

    Legal Directory Recommendations

    Jason has received a number of legal directory recommendations, as follows:

    Chambers & Partners

    2016: “Highly experienced in employment and equality law, especially in matters of discrimination. He is frequently instructed to represent individuals in the healthcare sector in high-profile cases with national impact. He also has considerable expertise in cases relating to social media, both internal disciplinary instances and Employment Tribunal claims.
    Recent work: Successfully defended the respondent organisation in Sadler & Ingham v Sale Day Nursery, a case concerning claims of unfair dismissal.” 

    2015:   “A very talented barrister who works most prominently in the healthcare industry, with great success acting for claimants in complex discrimination cases.  He is very well versed in handling cases involving social media in the workplace.”

    2014:   A vastly experienced employment specialist who is particularly highly regarded for his expertise in discrimination cases.  He has considerable knowledge of claims in the healthcare sector.  Recent work: He was instructed in Helen McGinlay v Aprite, a highly publicised case concerning sexual harassment in the workplace.

    2013:   Attracts widespread praise for his assured and highly effective advocacy and his vast employment experience.  His main areas of work are whistle-blowing and complex discrimination matters.

    Legal 500

    2015: “He works hard for clients, invests in their battles, delivers clear advice and fights their corner.”

    2014:   ‘His advice is always thought through, pragmatic and realistic’.

    2013, 2012, 2011, 2010: ‘Recommended’.

    2009:   ‘Very good, we use him if he’s available’.

    2008:   ‘A heavyweight junior in employment who is ‘very good’’.

    2007:   ‘Usually instructed on more complex cases, provides an excellent service’.

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  • Education

    Jason regularly represents local authorities, employees and others in cases involving the education sector in his employment practice. He often deals with complex discrimination and whistle-blowing cases and has appeared before Chairs of Governors on behalf of teachers. He has undertaken work for the National Association of Head Teachers and been instructed directly by them.

    Jason has a growing practice in the area of education law. He is direct access qualified and is available to act for local authorities and parents in a range of education cases including:

    • Admission and exclusion appeals in front of independent panels.
    • Appeals to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal (‘SEND’ Tribunal) concerning EHC assessments and/or exclusions
    • Upper Tribunal appeals arising from decisions of the SEND Tribunal
    • Advice and representation regarding judicial review
    • Issues in transitioning SEN students to EHC assessments
    • Cases involving further and higher education
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  • Public Access

    Jason is accredited to receive instructions directly from members of the public through the Public Access Scheme.

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