Catherine Johnson


‘Catherine Johnson is the ultimate professional and will always make time to answer my queries and help where she can.'

Legal 500 [UK 2021]


Catherine joined Birketts’ Employment Team from an international City law firm in 2009. She leads the Ipswich Employment Team and advises high profile clients, many of whom are well known brands and household names, in contentious and non-contentious employment law.

Catherine specialises in advising and assisting her clients to run projects whether that be a business sale, facilities management, TUPE transfers, harmonisation of terms & conditions and contracts of employment, large-scale collective redundancy exercises, reorganisations and business relocations all on a national and international scale. Catherine frequently makes use of our relationship with the International Advisory Group for local advice in various jurisdictions.

Digital Technology: Many of Catherine’s clients are in this space and she advises them on all aspects of employment law ensuring that the relevant business has the right foundations in place often after a rapid period of growth or in preparation for an IPO. Catherine works closely with HR Operations experts on ensuring that appropriate policy and practice is in place and with CPO’s on their strategic aims for their People Plans.

Training: Catherine works alongside the team to develop a range of in-house training for example: Moving to a High Performance Culture, Managing Investigations, Managing Stress at Work, Equality, Diversity & Inclusion etc. These are offered on an in-house basis tailored to the relevant organisation. The core training team have created an online training offering of employment essentials for line managers and supervisors of staff. 

Executive matters: Catherine works with her clients on a wide range of Executive matters (offers of employment, Executive service agreements, directorships and senior exits) along with advising on implementing and enforcing restrictive covenants. Catherine adopts a partnering approach whether that is with the CPO, CEO, CFO or Chair to plan Executive matters particularly complex and highly confidential exits where often advice can only be sought externally. 

Catherine also advises on complex settlement agreements (compromise agreements as was) as well as robustly defending and cost effectively project managing Employment Tribunal claims.

Catherine is based at our Ipswich office.

Other Information

Catherine is a member of the Employment Lawyers Association (ELA). She is also on the board of Suffolk Chamber of Commerce and Ipswich Central. Catherine is also a Board Member of the Ipswich Vision of which Suffolk Chamber of Commerce is a partner.

Catherine is recommended by Legal 500 [UK 2021]. Clients in this edition say ‘Catherine Johnson has helped me on numerous occasions with a whole host of different HR issues. Catherine is knowledgeable, efficient and I trust her advice and judgement implicitly. Catherine will always take the time to talk through her advice in a clear and concise way, and in doing so has enabled me to grow my own knowledge'. Another adds ‘Catherine Johnson was recommended to me by a colleague whose judgement I trust. I was not disappointed'.

Legal 500 UK 2021 Recommended Lawyer