Michael Powner > Charles Russell Speechlys LLP > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Work Department

Private wealth, real estate and construction, retail and leisure, sport, technology, media and telecommunications; employment, pensions and immigration.


Michael was head of the Employment, Pensions and Immigration group but is now on the Ex-Com at Charles Russell Speechlys, and is primarily a corporate employment lawyer with a UK, US, European and Middle Eastern client base. He has extensive expertise in providing commercial advice to reduce exposure to litigation. Michael also has substantial transactional experience with IPO, private equity/venture capital, due diligence/risk analysis and TUPE-related advice on a vast array of M&A and outsourcing deals. Additionally, he advises PLC clients in the negotiation of senior executive service contracts and severance terms as well as the employment hurdles to setting up new ventures. Particular expertise with European restructurings and dispute resolution as well as UK equal pay and gender pay reporting obligations. 
Experience: acting for a FTSE 100 company with regard to Europe wide restructure in 2019; acting for US and international retail client with harmonisation of global policies including data protection, harassment and whistleblowing procedures; acting for an international tech client to provide TUPE and related collective bargaining advice, avoiding UK wide industrial action; acting for F1 racing team with regard to their international contract, regulatory and dispute resolution needs.


Visiting lecturer to the College of Law; regular speaker at both internal and external conferences; writer and regular contributor to leading employment publications such as ‘Personnel Today’ and ‘Employers Law’, as well as national newspapers together with television and radio news interviews.

Lawyer Rankings

London > Employment > Employers

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP‘s ‘professional, knowledgeable and supportive’ practice recently introduced its R4 Consultancy and Support services (Review, Report, Resolve, and Respect), aimed at combining specialists in employment, regulatory requirements, reputation management, equality and diversity training, and HR investigations, to assist clients with auditing and training. Trevor Bettany deals with all aspects of employment law, from large scale variation exercises to LLP disputes. Michael Powner is a top employment advisor to leading clients in the retail, food and drinks, sports and hospitality sectors.

London > Corporate and commercial > Partnership

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP offers a blend of corporate, partnership, employment and tax expertise to clients – both partnerships and individuals. David Hicks  specialises in both corporate and partnership matters with a focus on the financial services sector – advising on more complex structures and non-contentious partnership matters, including conversions and M&A involving LLPs. Michael Powner ’s skills encompasses the litigious and employment aspects of partnerships and James Carter is the tax expert.

London > Industry focus > Retail and consumer

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has expertise in an array of matters including advertising, marketing and branding issues, sponsorships, brand protection work, influencer agreements, e-commerce mandates and occupier matters. Jason Saiban‘s practice focus lies within commercial matters, and places particular attention on commercial contracting within the retail and leisure sector, while Edward Craig is the go-to name for luxury retail brands, and Michael Powner is renowned for his employment expertise and counts Nike as a key client; the trio jointly lead the practice.

London > Industry focus > Hospitality and leisure

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP advises hospitality and leisure clients on advertising, marketing, sponsorship, branding and brand protection. Michael Powner , Jason Saiban and Lee Medlock head the practice. Powner’s focus concerns employment matters, particularly within restaurants. Saiban is the go-to contact for commercial advice and Medlock oversees real estate related matters.