Slavery & Human Trafficking

Max Fordham LLP is a limited liability partnership, owned entirely by its staff applying the principles of Employee Ownership. All employees have the opportunity to become members of the LLP and to share in its ownership after a qualifying period. There are no subsidiaries or associated companies.

Our supply chains comprise two distinct groups:

  • General business, IT and office supplies including equipment and services, and other associated direct supplies to the business.
  • Professional services where we sub-contract part of the services we are contracted to provide to our clients.

The Modern Slavery Act 2015 requires larger businesses to produce an annual Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement. As a medium-sized business, we are not legally required to produce such a statement. However we recognise that the intent behind the legislation is for businesses to encourage their supply chains to do more than the legal minimum, and so we are pleased to produce this statement summarising the actions taken during the financial year ending 5 April 2019 on a voluntary basis as if s.54 of the Act applied to us.

We confirm our commitment against slavery of any form and against human trafficking. As a Practice we are therefore committed to ensuring that we treat all members of the Practice, our suppliers and other stakeholders in an open and transparent way and to satisfy ourselves that we only engage organisations whose treatment of their staff and own supply chain reflect our values.

We want to use our position in the supply chain to bring about positive change. We believe that the best way to do this is for organisations to build meaningful supplier relationships, and support this with appropriate due diligence. Where possible we seek out suppliers who share part of our ethos—whether that is sustainability, employee ownership, or just our way of doing business—and develop long term relationships with them. In some cases, we will actively seek out and support small, independent local suppliers. Where we do so, we want to be sure that our due diligence is reasonable and does not impose unreasonable or onerous contractual obligations or unnecessary administrative burdens on small suppliers.

We have a number of long-standing policies which contribute towards ensuring that we do not engage in slavery or human trafficking, and that it is not present in our supply chain. We have continued to apply these during the last year, and have committed to continue to apply them during 2019/2020 and beyond while we seek to identify other appropriate opportunities to further ensure that neither slavery nor human trafficking are present in our supply chains.

Our pay system

We recognise that many businesses generate profit by requiring staff to work beyond their salaried contractual hours, effectively working for free. It was and remains a founding principle of our partnership, that we operate a pay system which ensures we pay our partners and employees for every hour that they work.

Work experience and internships

We recognise that a number of professional industries require experience which practically can only be gained through unpaid work experience.

With the exception of a short period of work experience for school-age children and young people organised through their school, we do not allow people to undertake unpaid work experience or internships. We do arrange both work experience and industrial placements for students, but will only do so on the basis that they are paid on the same basis as our employees.

Living wage employer

We are Living Wage Employer, and have been accredited by the Living Wage Foundation since 2014.

In addition to our partners and employees, this commitment covers our contracted cleaners, and we seek written confirmation from each of our cleaning providers every year that all staff who work in our offices are paid at least the current Living Wage.