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Lydia Seymour has a specialist pensions and employment law practice. She has been recognised by the legal directories as a leading junior since 2005 and is listed in both the employment and pensions categories.
Her practice includes all aspects of ‘black letter’ pensions law, including: de-risking, rectification, withdrawal arrangements in multi-employer schemes and trustee duties. Her clients include the Pensions Regulator, employers, trustees, trade unions and individuals.
She is currently acting in a number of claims of professional negligence arising from actuarial and legal advice to pension schemes, including cases in which allegations of breach of duty have also been made in respect of professional or lay trustees.
Given the dual nature of her practice, Lydia has developed a particularly strong reputation in the areas of crossover between pensions and employment law, and she is instructed in many of the leading cases in this area, particularly those which raise issues of age of sex discrimination in relation to pension provision, TUPE and breach of trust and confidence.
She also has substantial experience of statutory schemes and advises regularly on issues relating to the Local Government Pension Scheme, the Teachers’ Pension Scheme, University Superannuation Scheme and the NHS Pension Scheme.
Lydia has wide experience of employment and discrimination cases at all levels, appearing regularly in complex and high profile discrimination matters. She is also regularly instructed in claims arising out of the termination of employment, particularly those raising bonus or restrictive covenant issues.
Lydia has been sitting as a fee paid Employment Judge since 2005. She currently sits in the London South region.
Pensions & Trusts
Lydia acts and advises in a wide range of contentious and non-contentious pensions work including ‘black letter’ pensions law; issues relating to statutory schemes and claims at the interface of pensions and employment law.
She has acted and advised (both alone and with leading counsel) in High Court claims raising issues of scheme amendment (including estoppel and misrepresentation); de-risking (including Courage fetter issues and the pensions / employment crossover implications); equalisation and rectification. She has given advice to the Pensions Regulator on issues including scheme closures, section 75 debts, clearance statements and auto-enrolment.
She is currently advising on arrangements for the withdrawal of employers in two multi-employer schemes, one of which raises cross border issues.
Lydia is a leading practitioner in cases which raise issues of both pensions and employment law, and she is instructed in many of the leading cases in this area. These include age discrimination claims arising from scheme amendments and redundancy situations; TUPE – related pension issues, particularly those relating to the implications of the Proctor and Gamble decision; claims for breach of the implied term of trust and confidence arising from non-pensionability agreements and de-risking exercises, and sex discrimination and equal pay claims including calculation of the pension entitlements of part time workers.
She also has substantial experience of professional negligence actions relating to pensions, including advising and acting in claims involving actuaries and legal advisors, limitation problems and complex issues relating to loss.
In relation to statutory schemes, Lydia advises regularly on applications and responses in proceedings before the Pensions Ombudsman and has wide experience of the Local Government Pensions Scheme (LGPS), Teachers’ Pension Scheme (TPS), University Superannuation Scheme (USS) and the Principal Civil Services Pension Scheme (PCSPS). She has also advised trade unions on issues arising from the NHS Pension Scheme and Firefighters’ pensions.
Lydia is retained by a number of local authorities to give ongoing advice about issues arising under the LGPS, including: admission agreements; exit payments; guarantee bonds and TUPE problems. She also advises schools, colleges and other bodies on issues arising under the LGPS and TPS.
Rockwool Limited v Rockwool Trustee Limited & Mrs Linda Lewis
Part 8 claim in the Chancery Division addressing issues of scheme amendment, equalisation and scheme closure. Acting for the company (led by Richard Hitchcock QC).
Hunter & others v Chief Constable of the Ministry of Defence Police & others
Discrimination and equal pay claims being brought by over 1000 officers of the Ministry of Defence Police following changes to the Civil Service Pension Schemes.
Batiste & Pirouet v The States of Guernsey
Advising the claimants in this claim for breach of contract and age discrimination arising from the change to public sector pension provision in Guernsey.
Secretary of State for Communities & Local Government v The Fire Brigades Union
Acted for the Defendant (led by Antony White QC) in this Part 8 claim in the Chancery Division brought by the Secretary of State seeking a declaration as to whether the certain terms of the Firefighters’ Pension Scheme constituted age discrimination.
Sergeant & Others v Department for Constitutional Affairs & Others
Acting for the Claimants (led by Andrew Short QC) in this claim brought by over 6000 firefighters claiming age discrimination, equal pay and sex and race discrimination in relation to the transitional provisions of the new firefighters’ pension scheme.
O’Sullivan v London Underground Limited UKEAT/01523/15/DA
Appeal to the EAT against the award of death in service and pension benefits to the dependants of an employee who died during the course of Employment Tribunal proceedings. Appeal to the Court of Appeal pending.
Lees v Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine UKEATPA/0526/15/RN
Appeal to the EAT on an age discrimination claim relating to an employer’s refusal to declare an employee redundant in circumstances in which an enhanced pension would be due.
IBM United Kingdom Holdings Ltd & Another v Dalgleish & Others  Pens L.R.99
Appeared for the Representative Beneficiaries in the IBM v Dalgleish remedies hearing (led by Nicolas Stallworthy QC).
Appointments & Memberships
Areas of Law
“A good strategic thinker. She has an amazing ability to distil complex concepts to a digestible form.” Employment, Chambers & Partners 2018
“Incredibly thorough and puts everything into the case, leaving no stone unturned.” Employment, Chambers & Partners 2018
“She is incredibly thorough, well prepared and always willing to go the extra mile for her clients.” Pensions, Chambers & Partners 2018
“She is very methodical, very personable and a very good team player.” Pensions, Chambers & Partners 2018
“She is an excellent advocate, who is incredibly hardworking, strategic and insightful.” Employment, Legal 500 2017
“She is a very good communicator and has the benefit of good experience in both pensions and employment law.” Pensions, Chambers & Partners 2017
“She manages to translate pension issues into layman’s terms.” Pensions, Chambers & Partners 2017
“She is a good team player who will fight the client’s corner. She is also very thorough.” Employment, Chambers & Partners 2017
“She leaves the client with the clear sense that they have had the best possible representation.” Employment, Chambers & Partners 2017
“Quite simply awesome; she combines clear and practical advice with being extremely responsive.” Employment, Legal 500 2016
“Always well-prepared, she’s flexible, unfussy and totally on the ball.” Chambers & Partners 2016
“She is able to instill a high degree of confidence in her clients; she takes account of all of their issues and is able to present them in a very effective way.” Chambers & Partners 2016
“Razor-sharp, with encyclopedic knowledge of the constantly shifting field of employment law.” Legal 500 2015
“Very collegiate and always willing to put herself out.” Chambers & Partners 2015
“She has really good insight into how to present a case effectively, and is very calm even in the most tense situations.” Chambers & Partners 2015
“Fights tooth and nail to enhance her client’s position.” Legal 500 2014
“Thorough, thoughtful and commercial” Chambers & Partners
“Calm, thoughtful and a great advocate.” Chambers & Partners
“Extremely insightful and a very creative thinker” Chambers & Partners