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Paris Smith

David Roath

LLP Partner
T: 01962 679 774

David Roath

LLP Partner
T: 01962 679 774


Employment law and working relationships

  • Director and senior employee exits (advising both employers and employees)
  • Employment tribunal advocacy
  • Restrictive covenant and breach of confidentiality actions
  • Mediation
  • Discrimination
  • Complex and high value settlement agreements
  • Working issues relating to people who are not employees (self-employed, partners, consultants, LLP members)

About David

David Roath | Chambers 2017

David is ranked in the top band of employment solicitors in the South by the legal directory Chambers & Partners whose 2016 write up says:

David Roath is a highly experienced employment advocate, managing complex discrimination claims and restrictive covenant actions. Clients appreciate his “good command of the law, but at the same time pragmatic solution-finding approach for SMEs”.

David is a highly experienced employment lawyer who acts for a variety of clients ranging from large PLCs through to family businesses.

He also advises individual employees and regularly advises directors and senior employees on employment issues including exit strategy and settlement agreements. David’s reputation on director exits means that he is instructed by directors from all over the UK and from a broad spectrum of industries.

David has a close interest in business protection and he and his team have in 2017 and previously secured injunctions in the High Court against former employees of the firm’s clients. David also acts for individuals accused of breaching confidentiality and/or restrictive covenants.

David is an experienced employment tribunal advocate and will generally conduct a tribunal case from start to finish.

David regularly speaks at conferences and provides training to clients on a wide range of topics. He has also appeared on television and radio providing commentary on legal issues.   David is also an ADR qualified mediator.

Recent Blogs


From Businesses:

Liz Finney, General Manager, AFC Bournemouth: David has been my principal contact at Paris Smith during the 8 years the firm has provided HR support to the football club. I have found his advice to be straightforward and sensible with an appreciation of the vagaries of the business we work in.  It is a comfort to have his valuable support available, whether it’s a quick “are we on the right track here” call or email, or his involvement in the occasional, more complex legal matter.

Anne Segall, Director HR, Development & Training, BMT Group Ltd:  We have been working with David and his team for a number of years now.  We are always grateful for his timely advice, experience and speed of response, no matter how complex or simple the query.  In particular, myself and my HR colleagues are always impressed by his interest in our business.  This has enabled us to form a close working relationship that has led to the successful conclusion of many difficult employment issues.

From directors and senior employees:

Industry – IT : I appreciate your wise consult on this, indeed, I’ve greatly appreciated your counsel and support throughout this whole process. Thank you, the result is very much attributable to your excellent work, which has made a huge different to how I will process what’s happened – Thank you.

Industry – MD in Civil Engineering : David is an immensely reassuring person to work with at a difficult time – knowledgeable, clear in his thinking and communication, and a pleasure to work with. I would have no hesitation in working with him again or in recommending him to others in a similar situation.

Industry – Formula 1 : David was most efficient, always objective and honest about my situation. A consummate professional and above all very approachable, with the ability to bring clarity for both parties, ensuring a swift and amicable resolution.

Industry – Public Sector : Thanks again for the professional and effective service you provided resulting in such an excellent outcome for me. I finally feel justice has been done. It was scary tackling such a huge organisation as an individual – I couldn’t have done it without you. David v Goliath for sure!

Industry – MD in Construction : Most importantly though thank you for all your support and hard work in obtaining a good settlement out of a difficult start. I am sure you are very used to these situations, however, to those of us where it happens rarely it is a bit over whelming at times. I found your advice gave me the confidence to keep going and eventually secure a good result which I can move on with my head held high and a bit of time to seriously consider my next move.

Industry – IT sales : I was introduced to David Roath through a colleague at a very difficult and challenging time, having just been informed that my employment had been terminated.  David’s support, both on a professional and personal level, was invaluable.

David provided very detailed, practical and personal support through this process.  I would not hesitate to recommend David to friends and associates who find themselves in similar circumstances.

Industry – Director in Housing Association : I was working as an executive director of a Housing Association when I sought David’s advice/services. The response was very swift and I felt that time was dedicated to my concerns almost immediately.  The initial meeting was succinct and friendly and initial advice clear and subsequently proven to be accurate.

Throughout, communication was all I could wish for and the service carried through to a satisfactory conclusion on my part.

Industry – Insurance : I engaged the services of David Roath as a result of a personal recommendation. The service I received was excellent, it was both prompt and personal. David was extremely knowledgeable and informative on how best to work through negotiations on the settlement agreement to ensure the best possible result for all parties. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend his services to others.

Industry – Insurance :  For the purpose of feedback I can confirm that during my recent need for legal assistance the service provided by yourself was very much first class. At all times, from the advice offered at the initial consultation, I felt that there was a structure to the plan and that I was regularly informed of developments in a clear and concise manner. Importantly, it was very much apparent that the matter was always under close control which enabled a satisfactory conclusion. Additionally all communication was always provided very much in a timely and professional way. From this experience I’d certainly, without hesitation, use your services again and recommend you to family and friends.  

Industry – Careers : David Roath supported me through my recent redundancy from an Executive Management role. His professionalism and firm approach gave me control over the process and allowed me to reach a beneficial but amicable settlement with my employer. I have already recommended David to a friend in a similar position. (May 2017).

Industry – Academic : When I found myself the target of significant academic jealousy and harrassment at work,  a colleague recommended David’s services.  Throughout the course of the dispute, which after several years of sporadic discussion reached a settlement earlier this year, David was simply excellent. This was not just at the legal elements as you might expect, but also with effective strategies to achieve my desired outcome, and an excellent understanding of the art of the possible. David’s client focus and listening skills were first rate throughout, and he was consistently very personable and professional, making him easy to work with. I have worked for several top global professional services firms so rest assured I know what I am talking about in this regard.

Chambers & Partners Legal Directory 2016: As stated above.

Legal 500 2015: Paris Smith LLP’s broad expertise encompasses TUPE issues, tribunals and senior employee exits. Team head Clive Dobbin and David Roath are ‘always approachable and ready with the right advice’, supported by an experienced team of fee-earners.


I have worked with David for the last five years on many areas of employment law.    The advice has always been excellent, but what has separated him from others I have used in the past is his understanding of the company culture and style.   David instinctively knows the results that we are seeking and provides options, each with clearly communicated potential implications if chosen rather than advising us that we cannot take any particular course of action.    David is involved from the start of a project rather than being brought in to pick up the pieces when something goes wrong making the relationship a proactive and highly effective one.    David tackles situations with total professionalism and his characteristic calm giving us much needed reassurances in what is probably the most challenging and delicate area of law.   He has become a highly trusted and valued adviser.