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Firm Profile


Skrine’s employment practice group provides exclusive and client focused legal services. We are a niche team with extensive experience in the Employment and Industrial Relations field. Our trademark is simply the quality of our work. We offer our clients practical, result-oriented and customised legal solutions. The Employment Practice Group has been rated as a leading practice by Chambers Asia-Pacific 2010, 2011 & 2012 and Tier 1 for Industrial Relations by the Asia Pacific Legal 500 2011, 2012 & 2013.
Our Delivery Values:


  • Innovation, attention and commercial soundness: We focus on helping you achieve your business objectives in the most effective way.
  • Professional Integrity: By maintaining a high standard of professionalism and ethics, we create the best possible value for all stakeholders comprising the client, employees and the society in which we operate.
  • Partner attention: We ensure that you obtain the right level of skills, expertise and partner involvement that is required on each matter.
  • Effective management of legal issues: Our team is committed to ensuring that all issues are dealt with on a timely basis.

Areas Of Experience


  •  Takeovers, Mergers and Acquisitions
  •  Employment Contracts and Human Resource Policies
  •  Performance and Disciplinary Issues
  •  Fiduciary Duties and Confidentiality
  •  Workforce Reduction
  •  Restructuring and Reorganisation
  •  Trade Union issues
  •  Dispute Resolution
  •  Outsourcing, Insourcing and Offshoring
  •  Internal Crisis Management
  •  Retirement Benefit Schemes


Value Added Services


  •  Quarterly Newsletter- Legal Insights
  •  In House training, Workshops and Seminars
  •  IR updates


Our Clients cover all industries and sectors including:


  •  Automotive
  •  Banking and Financial Services
  •  Food & Beverage
  •  Information Technology
  •  Insurance
  •  Medical Services
  •  Multilevel Marketing Companies
  •  Oil & Gas
  •  Pharmaceuticals
  •  Plantation
  •  Property Developers
  •  Statutory Bodies
  •  Telcos
  •  Transport
  •  Utilities




Professional highlights include:


Dispute Resolution


  • Successfully struck out multi-million ringgit claims by ex-employees against multi-national clients and then successfully defended appeals against such striking out, both in the Court of Appeal and Federal Court.
  • Acting for a major telecommunication company in a groundbreaking case which established that the standard of proof in a dismissal case was the balance of probabilities.
  • Successfully resolved and managed issues arising from the unauthorised issuance of a multi-billion dollar USD bond by employees of a government linked corporation and subsequently successfully defended the client from unjust dismissal claims brought by the employees.
  • Successfully defended direct dismissal and constructive dismissal claims initiated by senior management level employees.
  •  Acted for a privatised company in the Court of Appeal in relation to a claim brought by its employees under the Government General Orders.
  • Successfully defended a major telecommunications company against a collective non-compliance of collective agreement case brought by many individuals in respect of a retirement age clause in the collective agreement.

Takeovers, Mergers & Acquisitions


  • Advised on a regional takeover of a manufacturing business, and thereafter advised on the rationalising of employment terms and conditions for the region.
  • Advised on the employment law aspects of a transfer of business and acquisition in the largest corporate transactions in Malaysia.
  • Was engaged by a multinational telecommunications network supplier to advise on all employment aspects of a takeover operation.
  • Advised on the employment law issues arising from the merger of local banks.
  • Advised a US based multinational on the employment and labour aspects of a management buy-out as well as the sale of its semiconductor business.
  • Advised a multinational insurance company on all employment issues of the transfer of its employees in a local incorporation exercise.
  • Advised a large property conglomerate on all employment issues arising from their rationalisation of business exercise.

Outsourcing, Insourcing And Offshoring


  • Advised a leading global technology services company on an outsourcing arrangement that was negotiated between that company and a leading bank to ensure that all employment issues were dealt with in compliance with the laws of the country and with minimum exposure to parties.
  • Providing legal support in an outsourcing project involving a large telecommunication company in Malaysia involving more than 400 employees.

Employment Contracts And Human Resource Policies


  • Regularly advise and assist a wide range of clients on crafting and rolling out policies to cater for new local laws or foreign laws that impact on local business e.g. Whistleblowing, Minimum Wage, Foreign Corrupt Practices.
  • Engaged by a US based multinational internet solutions company to review and advise on their standard employment contracts, global human resource policies, incentive plans, reduction in work force exercises.
  • Retained by a Malaysian conglomerate that is involved in, amongst others, the communications, oil & gas, industrial, automotive retail and education businesses, to draft their employment handbook/manual for use across their group of companies.
  • Advised the world’s leading furniture and DIY company on compliance issues in the engagement of foreign workers through 3rd parties.

Internal Crisis Management


  • Provide urgent legal advice in circumstances where the client’s intellectual property or confidential information is threatened by the acts of employee(s) or ex-employee(s).
  • Provided immediate public relations advice and internal crisis management strategy for multinational corporations in circumstances involving alleged fraudulent practices by employees which would have far reaching implications for clients both locally and internationally.


Labor And Employment

Whether your workforce is based in a single city or in multiple locations around the world, the Lex Mundi Labor and Employment group has the global reach, broad expertise and deep resources that organizations need to face today’s most challenging employment-related matters.
Through our extensive network of labor and employment law practitioners in 160 leading member law firms in more than 100 countries, we give employers access to first-rate legal skills and unparalleled local market insight. Additionally, the Labor and Employment group has experience in virtually every industry at every level – local, national or transnational – assuring that clients get swift, smart, sound legal solutions on a diverse range of critical workforce issues.


Experience And Areas Of Expertise


  •  Administration of labor contracts, including grievance procedures
  •  Individual employment rights
  •  Discrimination
  •  Complex trade secret and non-compete disputes
  •  Restructuring labor relations issues
  •  Employment litigation and appeals
  •  Mediation and arbitration
  •  Expatriation
  •  Union organization, certification petitions and elections
  •  Collective bargaining
  •  Consultation requirements in mergers
  •  Training and education


Accolades & Awards


“Selvamalar Alagaratnam and Siva Kumar Kanagasabai are recommended as Leading Lawyers for Employment & Industrial Relation”. Chambers Asia 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 & 2014


Skrine has been named by the UK based Who’s Who Legal as the Malaysian Law Firm of the Year 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 & 2014. Who’s Who Legal Awards


“This full-service firm continues to enjoy a strong reputation and has a comprehensive employment and industrial relations practice that handles a significant proportion of work in the sector. The team is well equipped to offer services across the whole spectrum of contentious and non-contentious employment matters.” Chambers Asia 2013


“This team has grown the practice over the last year with the addition of new lawyers throughout the department. Highlights from the last year include successfully representing a client in the Court of Appeal in relation to a case involving non-payment of termination benefits. The team was also involved in advising on new employment law regulations.” Chambers Asia 2012


“This team handles a mix of contentious and non-contentious work. It has expertise of advising on, for example, termination benefits, hiring and firing, and employee matters related to corporate exercises. Its diverse client base includes domestic and multinational businesses and financial institutions. Sources say: “The team works diligently to achieve the best results for its clients.” Interviewees describe Selvamalar Alagaratnam as “meticulous and prudent – she always goes out of her way to get things done.” She has core expertise in industrial relations work. Partner Siva Kumar Kanagasabai is commended for his timely and practical advice on employment matters.” Chambers Asia 2011


“This practice has five fee earners and recently assisted major employers with recession-linked retrenchments and voluntary secession schemes. Other highlights include advising on employee issues linked to a privatization and advising a statutory body on a case brought by a union concerning the appointment of a deputy director general. The team’s lawyers are describe by clients as “sound and practical”, as well as “knowledgeable and responsive”. Selvamalar Alagaratnam is an experienced employment lawyer who regularly appears in the industrial courts.” Chambers Asia 2010


Notable Practitioners


Siva Kumar Kanagasabai

Selvamalar Alagaratnam

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