Catherine Johnson



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‘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 heads up the Ipswich Employment Team and advises high profile clients, many of whom are well known brands and household names, in all areas of contentious and non-contentious employment law.


Catherine specialises in advising and assisting her clients to run projects whether that be a setting up and assisting HR Operations and Shared Service functions (with the assistance of our on-line HR portal (HR Boss), corporate M&A, facilities management, TUPE transfers, harmonisation of terms and conditions and contracts of employment, large-scale collective redundancy exercises, bulk settlement agreements, reorganisations and business relocations all on a national and international scale. 

HR/People strategy

Catherine partners with organisations to assist and advise on HR and people strategies including People team design, priorities, implementation and landing large projects within the business, engagement and culture. This work is often with the CPO/HRD, CEO and COO.  

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.

Multiple Employment Tribunal Services

Catherine runs a team of specialist employment lawyers who run volume employment tribunal claims. The team create an efficient and streamlined process for claims. They work with a wide range of clients who have multiple ET claims and work alongside these clients to efficiently run each stage of the process effectively and firmly whilst being pragmatic and commercial where appropriate.

High level and 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. 

Other Information

Catherine is a member of the Employment Lawyers Association (ELA). Catherine is Vice-President of Suffolk Chamber of Commerce and a Board member of Ipswich Central for the Business Improvement District. Catherine is also a Board Member of the Ipswich Vision and the Ipswich Town Fund (Government funded) for regeneration 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