Employment

Featured Publication: How to Hire and Fire in Vietnam
Contacts
T: +84 24 3772 5567
T: +855 23 964 210

T: +856 21 262 355
T: +66 2056 5995
T: +95 1 8255 208

Business conditions, labor sentiment, and new opportunities evolve swiftly in the growing economies of Southeast Asia. Tilleke & Gibbins helps employers navigate these shifting legal landscapes by providing advice on labor law and employment matters that is timely and time-tested, innovative and practical.

Our first goal is to help employers formulate long-term, yet flexible, strategies on conditions of employment, staff restructuring, labor-management relations, and other critical employment issues. By helping employers create a positive work environment, we help companies save recruitment and litigation costs, react to changing labor conditions, and attract and keep talented employees.

When conflict cannot be avoided, Tilleke & Gibbins brings or defends our clients’ employment claims in court. We combine the strength of our dispute resolution and litigation team with the expertise of our employment attorneys.
     
We offer the following services: 

  • Strategic Employment Advice: Conditions of employment, work rules and regulations, employment agreements, benefit plans, executive compensation, labor protection, workers’ compensation, social security, provident funds, and safety issues 
  • Commercial Transactions: Issues related to labor expansion, contraction, and integration due to mergers, acquisitions, and restructuring 
  • Labor-Management Relations: Conflicts in the workplace, strike management and control, lockouts, and labor demands 
  • Immigration: Work permits, visas, and permanent residence permits
  • Employment and Labor Litigation: Enforcement of restrictive covenants related to competition and trade secrets, termination of employment claims, and sexual harassment claims 

Read about some of our recent victories below. We have:

  • Assisted a client in its global restructuring, which required a reduction in the headcount of its Thai operations. The client sought our expertise in reducing the number of employees, while avoiding the potential for litigation relating to unfair termination. We crafted a multi-tiered solution involving voluntary resignation packages that employees would happily accept. As part of this solution, we advised the client on strategies for communicating with its employees regarding the restructuring. Ultimately, the client met its goal in headcount reduction and continues to operate in Thailand.

  • Developed a restructuring strategy to effect proportionate employee terminations at the intermediate management level for a  multinational financial services company. The restructuring would also give greater responsibility to senior managers. This created the dual objectives of (1) negotiating fair severance packages for intermediate-level management personnel in the face of strict labor laws and (2) imposing greater work requirements on senior-level managers without incurring claims of effective termination. We were successful in implementing the changes without any employee objection, and today our client’s employee culture is much improved.

  • Negotiated a favorable settlement of a highly contested termination of a company director involving our client, the director, and the company of the spouse of the director. The dispute included two criminal cases and two civil cases (one of which involved a claim of THB 20,000,000). We successfully gathered evidence of the director’s misconduct and leveraged that evidence to secure a favorable settlement for our client.

  • Prevailed in a highly publicized termination case wherein the client sought court permission to terminate the president of a labor union based on her television appearance while wearing a controversial T-shirt. The president maintained that she had given such interview on her own time and that her actions were protected by the Constitution. Although she was supported by many NGOs, the court ruled in favor of our client.

  • Defended a leading apparel company in a THB 50,000,000 labor claim and in a criminal case brought against the client’s director. We prevailed in both claims brought by the client’s former HR manager.

  • Advised a global telecommunications company on various labor and employment matters. Among them, we helped this client to rationalize a broad range of global employment policies. In addition, we consulted on the many issues inherent to multi-jurisdictional expatriate employment matters.

  • Concluded a case involving an employee safety allegation by a governmental authority against a multinational corporation.

  • Planned the layoff of approximately 1,000 persons and created a multifaceted strategy to manage the response of the employees and the labor union. The labor union mounted a strong challenge to our client’s activities. Nonetheless, we successfully responded to the opposition and completed the downsizing of the company without any employee claim.

  • Represented a manufacturer in negotiations with a labor union on strike. We successfully negotiated the terms of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) and, thus, expedited the conclusion of the strike. In the CBA, we secured favorable terms for our client and the return of certain management rights.

  • Advised a leading high-tech company on HR matters, including drafting labor contracts, registering new staff members, preparing documents for employment termination, and registering staff resignations.

  • Prevailed in a labor dispute wherein a managerial-level employee claimed that he had been wrongfully terminated and sought severance and other monetary entitlements. Representing the employer, we proved that the employee had in fact resigned from the company.

  • Planned and executed the layoff of 1,900 employees. Thereafter, 279 of the affected employees submitted claims against the client in the total amount of THB 300,000,000. We successfully proved that our client had cause to terminate its employees and that such was done fully within applicable Thai law, resulting in judgment in our client’s favor. This was a high-stakes matter because, if we had lost the labor cases, the approximately 1,600 additional employees would have filed claims totaling approximately THB 2,000,000,000. We also act as ongoing labor compliance counsel.

  • Obtained a favorable judgment for the Thai affiliate of a leading animal health company in a case filed against a group of former executives who left to work for our client’s chief competitor. We secured this successful result even though there is still debate among Thai legal scholars as to whether noncompetition clauses are fair to employees.

  • Advised a multinational computer components manufacturer in Vietnam on the labor and workforce implications of its acquisition of a key supplier’s manufacturing facilities.

  • Consulted an international logistics services company in Vietnam on employee transfer and retention issues arising from the acquisition of its logistics services subsidiary.

  • Advised, negotiated, and successfully concluded several executive separations for numerous top-tier companies in Vietnam. 

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November 17, 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins Employment Law Forum 2020

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s Annual Employment Law Forum from Tilleke & Gibbins will be offered as a series of webinars, throughout November and December, on the topics that...

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November 13, 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins Named Thailand Firm of the Year in Who’s Who Legal Awards 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins has been named Thailand Firm of the Year at the Who’s Who Legal Awards 2020, held on November 12, 2020. Notably, this award marks the fifth consecutive...

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November 10, 2020

Tiziana Sucharitkul Speaks at IBA 2020

Tiziana Sucharitkul

On November 19, 2020, Tiziana Sucharitkul, co-managing partner at Tilleke & Gibbins and director of the firm's regional disputes resolution practice, will join a panel of managing partners...

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November 6, 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins Nominated for Three Women in Business Law Awards Asia-Pacific 2020

Tilleke & Gibbins has been nominated in three firm-wide categories in the Women in Business Law Awards Asia-Pacific 2020. The awards, which are organized each year by Euromoney to recognize...

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October 29, 2020

AMCHAM Thailand Recognizes Tilleke & Gibbins at 2020 CSR Excellence Awards

On Tuesday, October 27, Tilleke & Gibbins was singled out for an award for exceptional corporate social responsibility (CSR) work during the past 12 months at the 2020 CSR Excellence Awards,...

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April 16, 2020

Current Requirements for Persons Traveling to Cambodia During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Jay Cohen

In order to prevent imported cases of COVID-19, on March 27, 2020, Cambodia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation imposed new requirements on foreigners entering Cambodia....

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April 15, 2020

Options and Obligations for Employers in Myanmar During the COVID-19 Outbreak

Ross Taylor, Nada Songsasen

Since the first reported case of COVID-19 on March 23, 2020, the Myanmar government has announced several notifications and preventive guidelines. On March 25, the Office of the President of...

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April 13, 2020

Laos Announces Exemptions from Visa Overstay Fines

Dino Santaniello

On April 7, 2020, the Immigration Department of the Lao Ministry of Public Security issued Notification No. 740 announcing updated regulations relating to the renewal of permits and visas which...

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April 11, 2020

Cambodia Imposes Domestic Travel Restrictions and Other Measures to Limit COVID-19 Transmission

Domestic Travel Restrictions

On April 9, 2020, the Cambodian government issued travel restrictions within Cambodia to prevent the progression of COVID-19 to the community...

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April 10, 2020

Cambodia Issues COVID-19 Preventive Measures During Deferred Cambodian New Year

Jay Cohen

On April 9, 2020, Cambodia's Ministry of Labor and Vocational (MLVT) enacted measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infections during the now-postponed Cambodian New Year holiday from Monday,...

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