Theodora Hand

Call 2014

My Expertise
Theodora Hand

Introduction

A dual Employment and Commercial Law specialist, Theodora has established a broad and varied practice acting for national and international businesses, household name corporates, private individuals and a range of SMEs. Skilled at every touchpoint of the litigation and advocacy spectrum, Theodora is known for her direct style. She is not afraid to provide clear and robust advice on the prospects of a case or argument, no matter the stakes or competing pressures. Clients regularly comment upon, and appreciate, her commitment to their cause. Whilst Theodora is committed to her clients at any point and prides herself on her accommodating and responsive style, she still finds the spare time to enjoy her passions for classical music, travel and her beloved golden retriever, Luna.

Particularly busy of late in the Employment arena, Theodora maintains a balanced Claimant and Respondent practice and is a firm believer that this balanced approach provides both immediate and tangible benefits for her clients. She is able to appreciate the motivations, tactics and pressures on both sides and to lead her clients to optimal outcomes each time.

A former pupil of David Maxwell, Theodora has quickly become a ‘go-to’ and trusted counsel for several of her key national and regional professional clients, who appreciate her ability to ‘tell it straight’.

Employment

Theodora is most commonly instructed in Employment work and has established a broad practice across many of the most prevalent sub-specialisms of work. Increasingly Theodora is instructed on redundancies arising out of, and connected to, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, though she intentionally ensures that she covers a broad range of specialisms on a regular basis, including all forms of discrimination, dismissals and whistleblowing at all times, so as to ‘keep her finger on the pulse’ of the latest developments and case law.

Comfortable with all manner of instructions, ranging from initial merits assessments through to multi-day final hearings, Theodora acts for both Claimants and Respondents alike and intentionally maintains a balanced client portfolio.

A snapshot of Theodora’s recent employment experience includes:

  • Acting on behalf of one of the UK’s largest retailers in respect of a settlement agreement and arguments that it was not without prejudice on behalf of a claimant.
  • Successfully defending a leading supermarket in a multi-day disability discrimination final hearing.
  • Successfully representing a claimant in a judicial mediation resulting in a fruitful settlement for the client.
  • Securing a £30,000 award for a claimant following a successful race discrimination case against the Royal Mail which had national media coverage.
  • Advising on the validity of contractual clauses to clawback recruitment agency fees.
  • Succeeding in a remote multi-day misconduct unfair dismissal case.
  • Repleading of a defence in a complex disability discrimination case on behalf of a local authority, with over 50 allegations.
  • Successfully arguing at a substantive preliminary hearing that neither a school nor local authority were the correct respondent as a result of no TUPE transfer having taken place upon the termination of a services agreement.
  • Advising on the merits of a complex pregnancy discrimination claim arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Business and Property

Prior to the bar, Theodora gained a wide range of commercial advocacy and legal experience in a number of roles. She worked for nearly two years in the London HQ of a magic-circle international law firm in one of their commercial finance departments, where she assisted in the drafting of key agreements, organised the signing of deals and liaised with high profile global clients. Theodora arrived at the bar already a veteran of the Country Court, given her extensive experience as a County Court Advocate with LPC Law. This included her instruction in approximately 350 (predominantly commercial) hearings including mortgage possession claims, landlord and tenant disputes, disposal hearings and insolvency matters.

In a similar vein to her employment practice, Theodora covers a broad spectrum of commercial advocacy and advisory work, particularly on the business and commercial side. Typical examples of her areas of interest include commercial contractual disputes (including counterclaims), misrepresentation, consumer credit and debt recovery. Theodora’s aligned commercial specialism complements her busy employment practice and means that she can cover many of the issues at the complex interface of employment and commercial contracts.

A snapshot of Theodora’s recent commercial experience includes:

  • Successfully establishing that a defendant was the signatory to a lease and therefore that unpaid rent was owing at a fast-track trial, and securing part 36 costs.
  • Advising on the merits of a consumer credit act and misrepresentation case which lead to settlement in a fast-track claim.
  • Drafting such a comprehensive Reply to a claim that the Judge used the basis of it for his judgment.
  • Representing a landlord in a complex case management hearing
  • Successfully having an ill-conceived claim for misrepresentation brought by a litigant in person set aside.
  • Representing the leading manufacturer of ice-cream vans in the UK in a successful application to have the particulars of claim struck out.
  • Drafting a letter before action, particulars of claim and advising in respect of the recovery of an unusual chattel under the laws of conversion and bailment.

Working with Theodora

Theodora is renowned for her ability to deal with late and sometimes ‘last-minute’ instructions, consistently turning around those complex matters and issues with confidence and ease. National and leading regional firms turn to Theodora time and again on their work, and value her commitment, often commenting that she goes ‘above and beyond’ for them.

Having built strong relationships with many of her repeat clients, Theodora is keen to ensure any professional relationship both starts off ‘on the right foot’ and that she continues to meet her clients’ high expectations each time. She is keen to invest time in understanding how her clients like to work and their preferences in terms of risk, settlement, reputation/publicity and turnaround times. With Theodora, clients can expect a tailored and considered service.

Education

BPTC - Kaplan Law School
University of Law - GDL
University of Nottingham - BA Philosophy and Theology

Appointments and Memberships

JJEL – which brings junior employment lawyers together in educational & social events

Midlands Circuit Women’s Forum

Employment Law Association