Elizabeth Timmins

Legal Director | London (City)

Elizabeth Timmins Photo

Liz specialises in both employment and business immigration law and is experienced in advising clients on a broad range of workplace issues. Liz is also part of the education law team and advises schools, colleges and associations on all aspects of education law.

Legal Director Liz Timmins, is a highly experienced employment and immigration lawyer with particularly broad experience gained from working in law firms ranging from full-service nationals to well-known employment law boutiques.

The Legal 500 recommends her and says “calm, clear and smart Liz Timmins finds the killer point and utilises it for the benefit of her clients”.

Sectors Liz specialises in include education, where she supports schools, colleges, universities and associations on the full range of legal issues they face, from employment and immigration issues to safeguarding and parent complaints. She also advises individuals working in the education sector including teachers and academics as well as students. This provides Liz with the widest possible understanding of the broad and connected issues that schools, colleges and universities face, which in turn enables her to advise senior employees, students and children’s parents more effectively.

Other sectors Liz regularly advises clients in include technology, advertising, healthcare, hospitality, construction, visual effects and not for profit (NPO).


Recent work includes -

  • Advising an independent prep school on the risks of permanently excluding a disruptive disabled pupil and how to minimise these risks. Liz advised the school on carrying out a detailed investigation so that the school could fully explain and evidence their decision to exclude the pupil, on the basis that their presence put other pupils and staff at risk. This in turn meant that the pupil’s parent chose not to challenge the decision.
  • Delivering training to the HR team of a MAT on recent employment law updates, including complicated but key updates on how to calculate holiday pay and the risks of getting this wrong.
  • Advising a further education college on defending an Employment Tribunal claim for unfair dismissal brought by an employee who was made redundant whilst on sick leave following a bereavement. Supporting the college with all stages of the litigation meant that the college could put forward its best defence whilst reducing the management time required.
  • Advising an independent prep school on its parent contract and documents, to ensure that these fully protect the school, particularly around key issues such as giving notice.
  • Advising a MAT on successfully defending an Employment Tribunal claim for sex and maternity discrimination brought by a former employee, including carrying out her own advocacy at the Employment Tribunal. Liz helped the MAT to successfully defend the claim, so they were not ordered to pay any compensation to the former employee, which also sent a strong message to any other potential claimants.
  • Assisting a new prep school with applying for a Tier 2 and Tier 4 sponsor licence to enable it to sponsor staff and pupils from outside of Europe. The dual-language school is now able to recruit staff and pupils from all over the world, enabling it to thrive and grow.
  • Reviewing and updating employment contracts, consultant agreements and staff policies for a visual effects company and for a school. The contracts and policies are now legally compliant, reflect best practice and are also tailored to each organisation’s needs, which should better protect them should any disputes arise in the future.
  • Assisting an advertising company with obtaining various visas for their existing staff and new recruits, including Tier 2 General visas, ancestry visas, indefinite leave to remain and naturalisation. The busy HR department outsources much of its Tier 2 and visa work to Liz, to ensure that all visa applications meet the key requirements and are submitted in good time to ensure that the application process is smooth and the employee can start work on time.
  • Advising an international manufacturing company on handling reorganisations and redundancies, including drafting and negotiating settlement agreements. Advising the employer on the overall process and risks, as well as drafting scripts, letters and agreements meant that the negotiation went smoothly and the employees exited the business in an amicable way and did not bring any grievances or claims.
  • Supporting a construction company on managing employment relations issues from sickness absence to flexible working requests. Supporting the small HR team over the phone and by email meant that issues could be avoided and the risk of employees bringing claims was significantly reduced.  
  • Advising senior individuals facing redundancy and other kinds of dismissal on their employment rights and options, including grievances and negotiating and advising on settlement agreements. Liz has helped countless individuals to understand their legal position and to negotiate a better deal, meaning that they are more financially stable whilst they look for their next role.

Liz also regularly attends education association conferences and events including for ISBA, IAPS, AoC and UKCISA, and frequently delivers training sessions at a number of these, including on harassment and Brexit.


Feedback from Liz’s clients include -

“We have been very impressed with the support provided by Liz. She is very professional, diligent and thorough and we appreciated the regular updates regarding the status of matters. She is commercially astute and very easy to deal with. We have nothing but praise and recommendation for Liz and would have no hesitation in recommending Doyle Clayton and Liz to our clients.” 


“She’s incredibly enthusiastic and works incredibly hard. She has a very strong ability to cut through mounds of material and get to the gist of things. She’s really efficient and focused – a great member of the team. She’s always nice to work with. Clients like her and I like her. That always leads to better case preparation and performance.”


“…. we worked closely with Liz Timmins and Anna Blackden at Doyle Clayton who expertly guided us through unchartered territory, successfully taking us through the process of applying for a sponsor licence and assigning this to the successful candidate who started in September on a 3 year Tier 2 visa. I am truly grateful for their specialist knowledge of immigration law, their patience in explaining complex details with such simplicity and, above all, inspiring us with the confidence that our challenge was indeed possible (although there were no guarantees). I would wholehearted and unreservedly recommend their services which has been professional and exemplary.” 


“I’d in particular like to thank Liz Timmins, who has had to listen to my baffling queries on a near weekly basis for the past year and a half, and always provided me a friendly, quick and precise response. I’m in no doubt that these queries have been difficult, from sponsor license reapplications, to building leases, and the more recently the company reorganisation, and then to the general everyday Right to Work compliance issues, but every time she has come through with her encyclopaedic immigration knowledge.”                   


Experience and qualifications -

  • Qualified in October 2011
  • Specialist in Employment Law since 2011
  • Specialist in Immigration Law since 2011
  • Specialist in Education Law since 2016


Professional memberships -

  • Employment Lawyers Association (ELA)
  • Education Law Association (ELAS)
  • Immigration Law Practitioners' Association (ILPA)


To meet some of Liz's Education team colleagues please click here.


To get in touch with Liz, please phone +44 (0)203 696 7171, email her at ltimmins@doyleclayton.co.uk or connect on LinkedIn.

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