IEL Elite

Seyfarth Shaw

Renowned global team



Seyfarth Shaw is the only Am Law 100 full-service law firm where its largest practice is employment and labour law.

Led by Darren Perry in Sydney and the “amazing” Peter Talibart in London, the firm's tight-knit team of dedicated international employment lawyers is based in offices in the UK, US, Australia, China, and Hong Kong.

The group advises an impressive list of household names, including Fortune 500 companies, on the gamut of employment law matters, and offers a truly global reach – from Asia, Europe and North America through to Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East.

The team at Seyfarth Shaw is very strong in the industrial relations space.

The department in April 2022 increased its offering by hiring Italian-qualified partner Sofia Bargellini and her team to join the London office. In January 2022, Caitlin Lane in New York and Paul Whinder in London were promoted to the partnership, further strengthening the team.

For US matters, David S Baffa in Chicago and Laura J Maechtlen in San Francisco are key names. Diane V Dygert in Chicago, who chairs the firm’s employee benefits and executive compensation team, is a further name of note.


Clients regularly instruct the department on a broad range of mandates. These include large multi-jurisdictional corporate transactions, strategic and commercial human resources initiatives, sensitive issues relating to c-suite executives, and workforce restructurings.

For example, Whinder and Talibart in 2021 supported a major multinational tech company in the purchase of a multi-country financial services business, with advice spanning 11 jurisdictions in Asia and Europe.

The team also assists with data protection, remuneration arrangements and multi-jurisdictional internal investigations, and frequently advises on the creation of whistleblowing procedures.

Notably, the team advises large multinationals on the development of global policies, including post-covid back-to-work measures, and D&I initiatives. As part of this, it offers a dedicated health and safety team that can advise on how to implement adequate global policies to ensure compliance with varied cross-jurisdictional regulation – and avoid criminal penalties.

The department also has a strong pro bono practice. In 2022, partners Marjorie Culver and Dan Waldman, and senior counsel Yana Komsitsky, played a key role in the firm’s Ukraine taskforce, supporting companies seeking to hire Ukrainians who had been forced to flee the country following Russia’s invasion in February.

Also in the last 12 months, Talibart – an accomplished human rights advocate – formally contributed to Canada’s draft modern slavery legislation, and provided evidence to the nation’s federal parliament as a subject matter expert.

Other key names

  • Rachel Bernasconi
  • Laurence D Harvey Wood
  • Ana Cid (UK/US)
  • Erin Hawthorne (Australia)
  • Tessa Cranfield (UK)
  • Wan Li (China/Hong Kong)
  • Paul Cutrone (Australia)
  • Henry Skene (Australia)
  • Ben Dudley (Australia)
  • Penny Stevens (Australia)
  • Chris Gardner
  • Michael Tamvakologos
  • Sarah Goodhew (Australia)

Experts based in…

Australia, China, Hong Kong, United Kingdom, and the United States.

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