Employment

Featured Publication: How to Hire and Fire in Vietnam
Contacts
T: +84 4 3772 5567
T: +855 23 964 210

T: +66 2056 5995
T: +66 2056 5995
T: +95 1 255 208

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 (contact: Pimvimol (June) Vipamaneerut)
  • Commercial Transactions: Issues related to labor expansion, contraction, and integration due to mergers, acquisitions, and restructuring (contact: Chinachart Vatanasuchart)
  • Labor-Management Relations: Conflicts in the workplace, strike management and control, lockouts, and labor demands (contact: Chusert Supasitthumrong)
  • Immigration: Work permits, visas, and permanent residence permits (contact: Piyanuj (Lui) Ratprasatporn)
  • Employment and Labor Litigation: Enforcement of restrictive covenants related to competition and trade secrets, termination of employment claims, and sexual harassment claims (contact: Sasirusm B. Chunhakasikarn)

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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Name Position Office

Chinachart Vatanasuchart

T:+66 2056 5688

E-mail

Partner
Bangkok

Chusert Supasitthumrong

T:+66 2056 5793

E-mail

Partner
Bangkok

John King

T:+855 23 964 210

E-mail

Partner
Phnom Penh
Bangkok

Michael K. Lee

T:+84 8 3936 2069

E-mail

Partner
Ho Chi Minh City

Pimvimol (June) Vipamaneerut

T:+66 2056 5588

E-mail

Partner
Bangkok

Piyanuj (Lui) Ratprasatporn

T:+66 2056 5533

E-mail

Partner
Bangkok

Anake Rattanajitbanjong

T:+66 2056 5510

E-mail

Associate
Bangkok

Chalermpol Intarasing

T:+66 2056 5809

E-mail

Associate
Bangkok

Chitchai Punsan

T:+66 2056 5779

E-mail

Associate
Bangkok

Doan Ngoc Tran

T:+84 8 3936 2060

E-mail

Associate
Ho Chi Minh City
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Datesort icon Title
May 23, 2017

Who’s Who Legal Recognizes Tilleke & Gibbins with 2017 Country Award for Thailand

Tiziana Sucharitkul, Darani Vachanavuttivong

Tilleke & Gibbins has won the 2017 Who’s Who Legal Country Award for Thailand at a ceremony that took place at Plaisterers’ Hall in London on May 15. This is the second year that the Thailand...

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May 15, 2017

Thailand Automotive and Logistics Summit: Presentation on Labor and Employment Law

Pimvimol (June) Vipamaneerut

Pimvimol (June) Vipamaneerut, a partner in Tilleke & Gibbins’ corporate and commercial group, has been invited to speak on the topic of “Legal Aspects of Labor Law in Thailand” at the Thailand...

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May 1, 2017

Michael Lee and Vinh Quoc Nguyen to Speak on Employment Issues in Vietnam

Michael K. Lee, Vinh Quoc Nguyen

Foreign companies doing business in Vietnam often discover that discipline and dismissal of employees can be a difficult process, even in cases of serious wrongdoing, due to the country’s strict...

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April 12, 2017

Tilleke & Gibbins Named ALB Employer of Choice 2017

For the fifth year in a row, Tilleke & Gibbins has been named “Employer of Choice” in Thailand in a survey conducted by Asian Legal Business.

The rankings were determined...

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April 12, 2017

ALB Southeast Asia Law Awards 2017: Tilleke & Gibbins Earns Nominations in Four Categories

Tilleke & Gibbins has been nominated for two national categories and two regional categories in the Asian Legal Business  Southeast Asia Law Awards 2017. This year’s winners will...

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Datesort icon Title
January 15, 2016

Lex Mundi Guide to Doing Business in Thailand 2016

The Guide to Doing Business in Thailand, published by Tilleke & Gibbins in association with Lex Mundi, provides a comprehensive overview of the legal...

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October 2, 2015

Termination for Serious Fraud: Tamping Out Smoldering Embers

Nuanchun Somboonvinij

Fraud, which is both a civil and criminal wrong, involves a deliberate deception to secure an unfair or unlawful gain. Employees commit fraud of varying degrees for many reasons including...

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September 9, 2015

International Employment Law (Third Edition) – Thailand Chapter

Pimvimol (June) Vipamaneerut

The third edition of International Employment Law  (Release 4, 2015), published by the Center for International Legal Studies, provides an overview of employment law in 42...

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September 9, 2015

International Employment Law (Third Edition) – Vietnam Chapter

Kien Trung Trinh, Annika Svanberg, Tu Ngoc Trinh

Kien Trung Trinh, senior attorney-at-law, Annika Svanberg, registered foreign attorney, and Tu Ngoc Trinh, attorney-at-law, in Tilleke & Gibbins’ Vietnam corporate and commercial group, have...

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August 24, 2015

Fixed-Term Employment Contracts in Thailand

Chusert Supasitthumrong

Employers often believe that fixed-term employment contracts provide advantages over indefinite-term agreements because of the complexity of terminating workers under Thai law. But in reality,...

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