As client relations and talent director at Thompsons Solicitors, Rakesh Patel is responsible for developing internal communications strategies, organisational development and ensuring the firm has the right people with the relevant skills in appropriate roles.

Previously head of employment rights strategy, Rakesh also manages relationships with Thompsons’ trade union clients and is responsible for union-focused campaigns.

Rakesh regularly gives talks and lectures on employment law to clients both at events organised by Thompsons and external organisations such as the Institute of Employment Rights.

He writes articles on employment law for Thompsons' own publications including Labour and European Law Review, as well as external publications. 

After qualifying in 1992, Rakesh worked at Brent Community Law Centre where he specialised in employment, housing, public and social welfare law.

Rakesh joined Thompsons in 2001 and is extremely proud of its commitment to work exclusively for claimants and for its commitment to working people and the union movement. He sees the work as highly political and ground-breaking.

A season ticket holder at Spurs, Rakesh also enjoys cycling, walking and music.

Rakesh's case experience

  • Won a Court of Appeal decision that a public body could not escape contractual commitments in a compromise agreement by alleging after the event that their decision to enter into them was unlawful or irrational.
  • Secured a tribunal decision about whether the claimants were discriminated against on grounds of their Trotskyite beliefs contrary to the Religion and Belief Regulations.
  • Won a Court of Appeal decision about the admissibility of 'without prejudice' discussions in court proceedings.
  • Won a Court of Appeal decision about disability discrimination in relation to sickness absence procedures.
  • Won a Court of Appeal case about disability discrimination in relation to trigger points in sickness absence procedures.
  • Won a Supreme Court case in which when acting for the Royal College of Midwives and the British Pregnancy Advisory Service as interveners, which concerned the application of the conscientious objection clause for medical staff under the Abortion Act 1967.
  • Represented a claimant in an important case under the Part-time Workers Regulations (PWR) in which the Employment Appeal Tribunal held that contracts should be defined broadly so that a part-time worker on a zero-hours contract can be compared to a full-time worker on a permanent contract when seeking to enforce the right not to be treated less favourably under the PWR.


Professional membership

Rakesh is a member of the Executive Committee of the Industrial Law Society and is a member of the Discrimination Law Association and the Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers. He is also a member of The Law Society panel.