Photo, Joanna Matthews-Taylor

Joanna Matthews-Taylor

Habib Al Mulla & Partners - A member firm of Baker & McKenzie International


Joanna Matthews-Taylor is a partner in the Dubai office of Baker McKenzie and head of the employment practice. Joanna advises on employment law and immigration matters, working with clients based in the UAE and wider Middle East region. Prior to joining the Firm, she worked as a senior legal consultant for an international law firm’s Middle East office, and as a qualified assistant for a leading Scottish law firm.

From 2016 – 2020 Joanna has been recognised by Legal 500 as a "Next Generation Lawyer" and as an "Associate to watch" by Chambers Global with clients and peers commenting "client service is her strength" and that she is "technically excellent" and "has been in the region a long time and has the local knowledge."

Practice Focus

Joanna is experienced in the full spectrum of employment law issues, including recruitment, employment contracts, benefits and termination. She has also advised clients on the employment aspects of corporate transactions, cross-border secondments and the mobility of employees in the Middle East. She has worked with international clients in a variety of sectors including technology, life sciences, hospitality and insurance.

Representative Legal Matters

  • Advising an international financial institution with regard to the alleged misuse of highly sensitive information by an individual formerly employed by the bank's DIFC entity.

  • Advising a global bank in connection with a multi-million dollar bonus claim raised against it by a former senior executive level employee in the DIFC courts.

  • Advising an international financial institution with regard to a major restructuring and redundancy exercise to its operations in the Gulf and drafting related documentation.

  • Advised a local financial institution with regard to its long term senior incentive benefit scheme.

  • Advising a global company in relation to the employment aspects of an investigation into fraud and embezzlement allegations together with the suspension and termination of employees involved.

  • Conducting a cross border investigation and drafting a comprehensive report in respect of a discrimination and retaliation complaint raised by an employee of a global pharmaceutical company.

  • Conducting an investigation on behalf of a multinational corporation into sexual harassment claim raised by anonymous whistleblower in Qatar and drafting report setting out findings and recommendations.

  • Advising a local telecommunications provider in respect of the employment aspects of an outsourcing project.

  • Supporting an international bank in connection with a discrimination and unfair dismissal claim raised against it by an ex-employee in the DIFC pursuant to a redundancy program.   

  • Providing strategic advice and providing support to navigate complex employment issues arising out of a joint venture between to global pharmaceutical companies.


  • Scotland (2006)
  • Dubai - Registered Legal Consultant


  • University of Edinburgh (Diploma in Legal Studies) (2004)
  • University of Edinburgh (LLB Law) (2002)


  • English