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Redundancy and your rights as an employee?

View profile for Victoria Schofield
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As the end of the furlough scheme approaches businesses all over the UK will be considering the size of their workforce and if indeed they need to make any cuts to staffing levels.

If you are worried about redundancy and whether your employer is following the correct procedures or not then you need a chat with a specialist employment solicitor.

Redundancy timelines

From today (September 16th) if you work in a business that is considering making 100 or more people redundant by the end of the furlough scheme then they should already be in consultation with you. 

If you work for a company that is looking at making a smaller number of redundancies of say 20 or more people then the consultation period is 30 days.  The employer must in these cases by law produce an HR1 form to notify the government of the planned redundancies.

“If as the job retention scheme comes to its conclusion bosses need to make staff redundant then there are very strict guidelines in place to make it fair to their employees,” said solicitor, Victoria Schofield.

“Therefore if your employer is thinking of making redundancies on the 31st of October they will need to start consultation today and if they do not (and there are over 99 employees in the location of their workplace at risk of redundancy) their dismissals might be unfair and employees may be entitled to what is known as a Protective Award of up to 90 days’ pay for the failure of the employer to consult,” she added.

Redundancy and Employment Law

What does being made redundant mean?

If a business needs to reduce staff to carry out the work available then employees doing those jobs could be considered for redundancy.  The work can still continue, it is the businesses requirement for fewer employees that matters. The redundancy is protected by employment laws and it is not the same as getting the sack.  Employees are entitled to consultation, notice and statutory redundancy pay (or in some cases there is a contractual policy that entitles them to enhanced rates of redundancy).

Being selected for redundancy

Some bosses may ask their workforce to step forward for voluntary redundancies and in some cases this helps those who wish to stay in work.  Selection for redundancy should be based on objective and measurable criteria, including for example; timekeeping, disciplinary records or performance appraisals, but it must be a fair and honest procedure.

My company has shut down due to Covid-19, can I still get redundancy?

There is still a consultation process and this applies if the business has gone bust and is shutting down. In these circumstances redundancy is paid by the government.

Redundancy Pay – what am I entitled to?

Two years is the magic number and so if you have worked continuously for your employer for this period then you’ve got a legal right to redundancy pay.

From there the amount will depend on your age, length of continuous service, and current salary.

If you are worried about redundancy and want a chat with one of our team of employment lawyers call 0161 785 3500 or email victoria.schofield@pearsonlegal.co.uk

Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.