Labour and Employment

Sayenko Kharenko’s labour and employment law practice is one of the leading and largest in Ukraine, which allows us to handle multiple projects simultaneously. We go beyond the traditional scope of the labour/employment law integrating various employment-related topics in our labour and employment practice. The firm’s labour and employment team closely follows the global employment law development trends, such as global trade union activities and equal employment opportunities.  
Realizing that the Ukrainian labour/employment law, unlike many other areas of law, is highly dependent on the legal scholars’ commentaries and law interpretations, we build our team around the requirement of combining vast practical experience in handling the most sophisticated employment matters with profound theoretical knowledge of the labour law, which is rare on the legal market.
We are known for our innovative approach to all matters, from the complex know-how dismissals (including for violating the FCPA/UKBA/Ukrainian anti-corruption/anti-bribery legislation provisions) to developing sophisticated corporate policies, regulations and other documents in the employment area. 
We develop comprehensive implementation plans for the corporate policies and regulations (including those based on the global documents) to be user-friendly and digestible for all employees of Ukrainian subsidiaries, including blue-collar workers. We use our expertise in personal data protection and anti-corruption/anti-bribery areas as a workable tool for taking disciplinary actions against non-performing employees, including dismissals. 
We support our litigation practice team throughout the entire process of litigating labour disputes. This cooperation results in the remarkable number of disputes resolved in favour of our clients. Notwithstanding our success in litigating various complex labour disputes, we believe in amicable dispute settlement and represent our clients in mediation proceedings. Some lawyers in our team are certified to sit as mediators and are experienced in employment mediation.  

Our services

Sayenko Kharenko’s labour and employment team specializes in all areas of labour and employment law and provides a wide range of services to address the clients’ needs, including:
  • labour/employment law compliance audits;
  • due diligence reviews of labour law and labour law related liabilities in corporate acquisitions (including assessment of Ukrainian targets’ compliance with privacy/data protection laws and FCPA/UKBA /Ukrainian anti-corruption/anti-bribery legislation);
  • compensation and benefits, including executive compensation issues;
  • disciplinary actions;
  • all aspects of advising on trade union regulation and other employees’ representation matters, including consulting on global trade union activities and their implications on Ukrainian employers;
  • bringing global employment/corporate policies and procedures of transnational companies in compliance with Ukrainian law;
  • complex, know-how employee dismissals, including those caused by FCPA/UKBA/Ukrainian anti-corruption/anti-bribery legislation related violations by top management of Ukrainian subsidiaries of multinational companies;
  • redundancies and mass layoffs due to employer’s liquidation or business restructuring;
  • advising on employing interns and temporary employees;
  • advising on HR record retention issues;
  • consulting on implementing ‘do not hire’ global policies in Ukrainian subsidiaries;
  • drafting sophisticated employment agreements/contracts, job descriptions, employment termination agreements and other related documentation for CEOs, top management and other staff, as well as internal personnel policies and procedures, and collective bargaining agreements;
  • adjusting global employee references release procedures to the Ukrainian data protection legislation;
  • advising on military service and mobilization laws implications on employers;
  • developing sophisticated internal regulations and related documents on protecting confidential information and commercial secret, in particular of companies subject to mandatory disclosure of public information;
  • advising on engaging foreign secondees by Ukrainian companies and sending Ukrainian employees on secondment abroad;
  • consulting on various aspects of the multijurisdictional employee transfers, including developing such transfers algorithms;
  • advising on the personnel outsourcing, including on relevant cross-border issues;
  • advising on employment and immigration law issues, and all other aspects of engaging foreign labour, including within the framework of the services agreements between the Ukrainian company and the foreign service provider entity;
  • obtaining work permits and service cards for foreign employees and assisting them with various immigration law issues (e.g., obtaining D-type visas, temporary residence permits, permanent residence permits, etc.);
  • advising on the specifics of Ukrainian workplace health and safety regulation, conducting due-diligence reviews of Ukrainian targets’ compliance with Ukrainian labour safety legislation, developing sophisticated labour safety policies and procedures, and adjusting global corporate workplace health and safety policies to Ukrainian legislation;
  • advising on the equal employment opportunities policies and procedures, including on bringing the global corporate anti-discrimination policies and procedures in compliance with applicable Ukrainian laws;
  • consulting on specifics of employing people with disabilities;
  • representing clients in disputes with trade unions, including in labour disputes commission, court and mediation procedure;
  • litigation and other dispute settlement, including  employment mediation.

Svitlana Kheda, counsel heading our labour and employment practice group is an internationally recognized expert in the field with over 20 years of experience in this area of law. Dr Kheda has been recognized among the leading lawyers in Labour and Employment by Best Lawyers International 2018 and all-Ukrainian survey Client’s Choice. TOP-100 Lawyers in Ukraine 2017 by “Yurgazeta” Publishing House; named as one of top three Labour & Employment lawyers according to Ukrainian Law Firms 2017; and as one of the four best lawyers in Employment in Ukraine by Chambers Europe 2017. Ms Kheda has been also named “Lawyer of the Year” in Employment in Ukraine by Best Lawyers International 2017 edition. Svitlana Kheda is a certified mediator with over 10 years of experience in successful use of mediation and quasi-mediation procedures for settlement of labour disputes and conflicts, including those connected with compliance violations. Dr Kheda is a member of the Employment and Industrial Relations Law Committee of the International Bar Associations, Council of the Employment Law Committee of the Ukrainian Bar Association, and the National Association of Mediators of Ukraine. Svitlana Kheda speaks and publishes extensively (in Ukraine and abroad) on the topical labour/employment law issues. Ms Kheda is an exclusive permanent author of the chapter on Ukraine published in The Employment Law Review, providing an overview of the labour and employment legislation in over 50 jurisdictions. 

For the list of the selected labour/employment law matters and other additional information please consult P. 6 of our Labour & Compliance Brochure