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Birketts LLP

Work 01603 232300
Fax 01603 230533

Jeanette Wheeler

Work 01603 756427
Birketts LLP

Work Department

Employment, Health




Jeanette joined Birketts in 2007. She is a Partner and heads up our Employment Team across all four offices.

Jeanette has almost 20 years of experience of advising a wide range of employers and senior executives. She particularly specialises in large scale redundancy and restructuring exercises, the TUPE implications of outsourcings, acquisitions and disposals; dealing with the exit of directors and senior executives and settlement agreements; MHPS, difficult staff disciplinary matters, whistleblowing and grievances and the Tribunal claims that can ensue. She is also particularly interested in the challenges thrown up by the need for greater gender diversity in business and is often asked to speak on this subject.

Her clients have included household names as well as charities, the NHS, smaller employers and estates.

Jeanette is committed to acting in partnership with her clients by building sustainable, long term relationships, understanding her client’s businesses and providing excellent client service and practical solutions.
In April 2013 Jeanette was appointed as President of the Norfolk and Norwich Law Society.

Jeanette is a member of Birketts’ Management Board and a Director of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership Board. She also sits on the Norwich area chamber Council.

She has previously held the post of Chair of the Norwich Business Women's Network and from 2013 to 2015 Jeanette was President of the Norfolk and Norwich Law Society.

In 2013 Jeanette was co-opted onto the BIS Business Challenge Panel, a government review of employment legislation aimed at rolling back employment law red tape on employers.

Jeanette is experienced at providing media comment and analysis and is regularly asked to speak or participate in public discussions or lectures on legal or business related topics.

She has conducted numerous public and in-house training courses on a range of HR topics receiving excellent reviews and praise for making these courses informative, interactive and always practical.

In the past Jeanette travelled extensively to the USA for speaking and business development engagements and was invited by Ernst & Young to sit on its Silicon Valley General Counsel roundtable alongside the GCs of some of the largest companies in the world. 

East Anglia: Human resources


Within: Leading individuals

Jeanette Wheeler - Birketts LLP

Within: Employment

Birketts LLP fields a 'pragmatic and efficient' employment practice whose ‘service standards are exceptional‘. The ‘very down-to-earth, unflappable' Jeanette Wheeler ‘instils confidence‘ and leads the firm-wide practice from Norwich. Clients recommend her for her ‘breadth of knowledge and her common sense approach'. She recently assisted a client in the healthcare sector with an investigation into a senior staff member's conduct. Also in Norwich, the ‘very knowledgeable, friendly and approachable‘ Matthew Newnham is praised for his ‘wonderful calm demeanour and his practical advice'. Investigations and Employee Relations Consultant Lorna Townsend leads the firm’s HR consultancy and investigations service, which focuses on employee relations. 'Thorough and pragmatic' associate Sam Greenhalgh and legal director Tom Sharpe are also recommended. In Cambridge, Abigail Trencher is the key contact. For a UK employer, she handled TUPE matters arising from a foreign acquisition. Senior associate Katie Harris-Wright is ‘very personable and easy to talk to; she takes the time to understand clients’ business'. Fellow senior associate Lottie Seaborn is ‘great to speak to and has a unique personal touch to her work'. Consultant Tim Tyndall is also recommended. Catherine Johnson  takes the lead in Ipswich, where senior associate Lisa Hayward specialises in share schemes.

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East Anglia: Public sector


Within: Health

Birketts LLP is a member of the NHS Shared Business Services framework and the NHS Commercial Alliance legal framework. It has a strong track record in the health and social care sector, particularly for employment and property work. The key contacts are legal director Erika Clarke, who leads the public sector practice, and head of health Richard Eaton. Clarke handles major capital projects, outsourcings, business-critical contracts and public procurement issues. She recently acted for an NHS foundation trust in numerous matters including the interpretation of contract terms and public law duties associated with the funding of care packages. Eaton's area of expertise is public law and judicial reviews. He recently succeeded in quashing a CQC draft report for a care home provider. Commercial property partner Chris Barker has extensive experience in trust portfolio management, and Matthew Newnham handles employment law matters including tribunals for health sector clients. Also recommended are corporate finance partner Greg Allan, employment partner Jeanette Wheeler and head of charities Sara Sayer.

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