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What happens when a compromise agreement goes wrong?

21 October 2011 #Employment

Celia Elizabeth Farnon, a Hedge Fund Manager has filed a High Court claim against a law firm who advised her in relation to a discrimination claim against her former employer.

Ms Farnon believed that she was receiving less favorable treatment than her male colleagues and sought advice from Law Firm Devonshires. She alleges that she was given poor advice which resulted in her receiving hundreds of thousands of pounds less compensation than she was entitled to. She entered into a compromise agreement giving up her rights to bring claims against her former employer and is now seeking damages from Devonshires to cover what she perceives to be the outstanding amount owed to her.

Ms Farnon’s version of events is that the original complaint on which she sought advice was that her bonus had been reduced by 95% from £800,000 to £36,615. She alleges that she was advised that she would not be able to recover this amount because she “had a job lined up, so there would be no chance of damages for future losses, and that there was basically no room to negotiate” and that her claim would be limited to just £50,000. Ms Farnon also alleges that her lawyer advised her `to start crying` the next time she had a meeting with her boss to discuss the issue.

Devonshires deny giving poor advice, stating that Ms Farnon`s primary concern when she came to them was for them to find her `leverage` so that she could leave her job at short notice. They assert that Ms Farnon had not mentioned that she felt her bonus reduction was a result of her sex, and that it only occurred to her to bring this claim once she had already entered into the compromise agreement. The firm also denies advising Ms Farnon to turn on the waterworks.

The case is due to finish this week and Buddy will blog with an update once Judgment is given.

Clarkslegal, specialist Employment lawyers in London, Reading and throughout the Thames Valley.
For further information about this or any other Employment matter please contact Clarkslegal's employment team by email at by telephone 020 7539 8000 (London office), 0118 958 5321 (Reading office) or by completing the form on this page.
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