Know your rights and protect your employment position
Are you concerned that your employer is looking to reduce its headcount? Are there rumours about the business closing or your particular workplace shutting down? Scenarios such as these may give rise to a redundancy situation putting your job at risk.
If you are made redundant and have at least 2 full years’ continuous service with your employer, you will be entitled to a statutory redundancy payment. It is also worth checking your contract of employment or staff handbook because you may also be entitled to an enhanced redundancy payment.
Redundancy is a potentially fair reason in law for your employer to terminate your employment. In order to make redundancies fairly your employer must:
- have a genuine redundancy situation;
- adopt a fair selection process and redundancy pool;
- carry out individual consultation with affected employees about the risk of redundancy; and
- properly consider alternative employment opportunities or ways to avoid the redundancy.
If your employer fails to observe these basic requirements you may have a tribunal claim for unfair dismissal. Usually you will need a minimum of 2 years’ service with your employer to bring this type of claim. There are however, exceptions to this rule; for example, where you are selected for redundancy because of pregnancy or maternity. This would render your dismissal automatically unfair.
If you are selected for redundancy on the basis of a protected characteristic (race, sex, marital or civil partnership status, pregnancy and maternity, disability, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, religion or belief or age), then you may also have a discrimination claim.
You may also be entitled to an extended period of redundancy consultation through appropriate representatives if you are one of 20 or more employees at one establishment being made redundant, this is known as collective consultation.
Your employer may offer you an enhanced redundancy package by way of a Settlement Agreement in return for signing away your statutory rights to bring any claims against them including unfair dismissal.
If you are presented with a settlement agreement or consider that you may have been made redundant unfairly act promptly as there are very strict time limits for presenting a tribunal claim and these can be as short as 3 months.
If you need legal advice, speak to a member of our employment team on 01689 887887.