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Redundancy procedures - what you need to know

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With recent press stories announcing that big players such as John Lewis, Lloyds, Sainsbury’s and Argos are making more possible job cuts, it can leave both employees and employers of all sizes feeling unsettled in the current uncertain climate. As we start a second lockdown it’s even more pertinent to know what your rights are as an employee and the obligations as an employer.

Regardless of the size of the company there are certain redundancy procedures that should be followed to protect both the business and the employee.

The selection process should be conducted in a fair way and the employer must ensure that employees are not selected for reasons that could lead to a potential discrimination claim under the Equality Act 2010 on the basis of age, gender, disability or due to pregnancy.

Staff should always be consulted about the  reasons for the redundancy and if there are any potential ways to avoid redundancy such as considering suitable alternative vacancies.

If the unfortunate decision is fairly reached that redundancy is necessary, any employee with over two years continuous service is eligible for statutory redundancy pay, this is calculated dependant upon the amount of full years the employee has worked for the company.

Failure to consult or follow a fair process could lead to an employee bringing a case against the employer to the employment tribunal, making a difficult situation more problematic.

At Stephensons we have a dedicated team of solicitors who specialise in employment law who can advise businesses and employees on redundancies, the steps to follow and any issues that may arise out of a redundancy process.

By Joanne Ribchester, employment law and discrimination team