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Former TM Lewin employees win legal battle over abrupt redundancy

Camilla Rydzek
14 April 2022

TM Lewin employees have won a £439,000 legal battle against the business after an employment tribunal ruled that the retailer had failed to give staff the legally required 30-day redundancy consultation period.

The shirtmaker TM Lewin announced its first insolvency in 2020. The business was then acquired by Torque Brands which closed all of its 66 stores resulting in around 600 job losses.

Law firm Simpson Millar has now negotiated a combined pay-out of £439,000 from the Government's insolvency service for 101 affected employees, who will have access to funds of up to £4,352.

Anita North, head of employment law at Simpson Millar, commented: “The initial collapse of TM Lewin had a devastating impact on its employees, especially in the height of the pandemic in 2020.

“This judgment brings to a close a difficult period for those who were affected, but we are delighted to have secured a positive outcome on behalf of our clients.`'

The news follows TM Lewin's announcement from 8 April that it had been bought out by Petra Group, its main lender, after falling into administration a second time in as many years. The business had only 50 staff when it fell into administration for the second time, and as part of its rescue deal only 22 staff will transfer over to the new owner.

The British formal shirt and tailoring brand was founded in 1898 and has gained popularity as a premium fashion choice for city workers, but has suffered losses as home working during the pandemic became more common.

On 12 April a similar lawsuit ruled in the favour of former Debenhams employees, who won £350,000 after a tribunal ruled that they had not received the statutory 30 day notice of termination.

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