About Me

As co-head of our international and head of our Netherlands HR Services Group, I have extensive experience in all Employment & Benefits affairs, both domestically and across Europe, which I combine with a thorough insight into all directly associated areas of law (Business Immigration, Payroll Tax and Corporate law). I am based in The Hague.

Working at the nexus of employment law, corporate law and payroll tax and pensions, I provide our clients with advice in employment, benefits (pension and insurances) and business immigration matters. I have gained vast experience in strategic HR-legal consulting, business set-ups, (post-acquisition) business integration and restructurings, outsourcing, M&A, employee consultation (ER), pension, investigations, executive/board room terminations, as well as litigation in those areas.

On the back of my very strong analytical and drafting skills, my strengths are found in the ability to translate complex legal issues into simple concepts and strategies, and embedding those into the client's overall business strategy. My aim is to provide clear and simple business advice to facilitate clients' decision-making processes. I am used to doing that not just at the domestic level, but also in a multi-jurisdictional coordinating capacity. My clients are almost exclusively multinational companies. I frequently work in close cooperation with business leaders and experts in other domains (eg. corporate, commercial, tax, finance and pensions).

Before joining Bird & Bird in 2002 as an experienced employment lawyer, I began my career in corporate law in 1990. I am often praised for my presentation skills and regularly provide, and enjoy giving, tailored in-house client trainings.

I am fluent in Dutch and English and speak conversational German.
  • Very large and prestigious restructuring project for the world's leading tobacco company (1,450 affected employees).
  • Strategic (board room) consulting on footprint reductions in Europe.
  • Complex (post-acquisition) business integration and/or restructuring projects for a multitude of multinationals, often involving multiple jurisdictions.
  • Developing standard employment documentation (employment contracts, handbooks, restrictive covenants, performance management, termination/compromise agreements), both for domestic use and use in multiple (global) jurisdictions.
  • Complex (appeal court) litigation for leading multinationals against Netherlands Trade Unions on interpretation of collective bargaining agreements.
  • Executive terminations & litigation (serious wrong-doing).


  • Erasmus University Rotterdam & University of Amsterdam, Post-doc, Employment law
  • Leiden University, Master's degree, Law
  • Royal Military Academy, Army, Socio-Psy curriculum


  • The Netherlands Bar in 1990 (Rotterdam in 1990; The Hague in 2002)
  • Dutch Association of Specialised Employment Attorneys (VAAN & VvA)
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Philip Hartman earns praise from clients for his 'technical knowledge, excellent communication skills and quick reaction times.' His expertise incorporates outsourcings, restructurings and executive-level terminations.

Chambers Europe 2019

Philip Hartman is praised for his expertise in outsourcing, restructuring and multi-jurisdictional matters. Clients say: 'He is very proactive and demonstrates a very deep understanding of law from an employment angle,' adding that 'strategically he is very strong and is able to spot risks far in advance and set up counter-measures.'

Chambers Europe 2018

Based in The Hague, department head Philip Hartman advises on outsourcing and M&A-related mandates as well as restructuring and executive terminations. Clients praise his being 'very attentive to our needs and timelines,' adding: 'He provides excellent service and expertise.'

Chambers Europe 2017

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