In this edition of our #GetToKnowTheTeam series, we chat with Partner, Melanie Hart.
As a starting point Melanie, can you please outline your area of law that you specialise in?
I am an employment lawyer who specialises in Individual and Collective Labour Law matters, acting for employers across a number of various industries. I also have experience in data protection and privacy in terms of the Protection of Personal Information Act.
What is keeping you busy at the moment?
The compliance deadline for the Protection of Personal Information was 30 June 2021 but I am still relatively busy assisting companies in rolling out their data privacy compliance. This tends to be an ongoing journey as companies incorporate privacy practices within their organisation.
Aside from practising law, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I have a manic household with 2 young kids, 4 dogs and 4 cats so there is always something on the go. Weekends are spent keeping tabs on the kids’ various activities (as well as my own horseriding adventures) and having memorable experiences with my family. We do a family outing on most weekends.
What have been some of your proudest moments in practice?
One of my career highlights was representing a mining house in a trial for a mass dismissal, where in excess of 700 employees were dismissed for participating in unprotected strike action. The three week-long trial taught me a tremendous amount not only in terms of strike management but also the art of litigation.
Tell us something most people don’t really know about you?
I am an avid horse rider and although I only started riding fairly recently as an adult, I did my first Dressage test a few weeks ago. Apart from riding, I generally enjoy the outdoors and another of my favourite activities is taking my husky dry land sledding (which is a dog mushing activity also referred to as “bikejoring” – it’s an actual thing!).