Richard Isham



T: +44 (0)20 7395 3133

Richard Isham's LinkedIn profile


Richard specialises in UK and cross-border employment, data protection, whistleblowing, confidential information, UK Bribery Act and FCPA advice for UK and, mainly, US businesses. He advises senior executives on joining and leaving companies.

He also has experience of advising those transferring from plc’s to private equity-backed portfolio companies on remuneration, management shares, the “grant, vest, exercise” cycle, performance targets, the “waterfall” effect, ratchets, good leaver/bad leaver terms, including malus and clawback provisions. Richard also advises on Director duties, the appointment of NEDs and aspects of corporate governance.

Recent Experience

  • Advised on and project managed advice for a US based multinational on deduction from wages issues across 25 jurisdictions.
  • Advised a US headquartered biotech business on the employment and HR documentation required for their staff in 12 jurisdictions.
  • Advised a UK based business on restraint of trade issues, option plan rules (good leaver/bad leaver, malus and clawback) and on the terms of a shareholders’ agreement and Articles in relation to a prospective team move.
  • Advised a former Minister on his obligations under the Ministerial Code and the Business Appointments Rules and drafted the Appointments Application for submission to the Cabinet Office.
  • Advised an executive leaving a PLC for a PE backed portfolio company (equity, sweet equity, the “waterfall” etc.). Subsequently advised him on his exit from that role (the company having IPO’d and subsequently being delisted on a trade sale) and on his new terms on joining another PE backed company.

Career History

Richard joined Wedlake Bell in 1988, became a partner in April 1996 and set up the firm’s employment team in 1997. He is now responsible for the firm’s international alliances, is the current President of our European alliance, TELFA and sits as a non-executive director on the Board of USLAW Network Inc. He is a member of the ELA. Prior to joining Wedlake Bell, Richard qualified as a legal aid lawyer and then worked in New York city for a year.

Richard is the Chairman of a charitable trust that has property, art works and a farming business; he also does voluntary work for the charity Respond helping young adults who have been in contact with the criminal justice system.


Richard is the author of the chapter on Age Discrimination for Tolley’s Employment Law and the chapter on “Removal of Directors” for The ICSA Directors’ Handbook.


Possible post-Brexit models for engaging with the EU


Comparing UK and Australian financial conduct regimes


EAT rules Uber drivers are workers


Employment law – hot topics for 2018