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What to expect when faced with the unexpected

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What to do if your current solicitor closes down

We have been facing turbulent times in the business and employment sector with some of the big names that we know and trust not managing to escape unscathed, recently having to publicly close stores. The word redundancy and furlough unfortunately have been some of the most commonly used words within the last twelve months.

Being made redundant can be a worrying time, the consultation and notice period hopefully providing a buffer to allow employees to look for alternative employment.

But what happens if you turn up for work one day to the news that your employer is insolvent, the business closed, and you along with your colleagues are to be made redundant with no notice? There is not a buffer of time to find alternative employment, or an income whilst the search is ongoing.

Even in this type of instance where the employer is unable to make statutory payments, employees with two years or more service can claim their redundancy payments from the Redundancy Payments Service. Employees may also be able to make claims for holiday pay, notice period and outstanding payments such as overtime.

In instances where 20 or more employees have been made redundant without any consultation it is possible to make a claim in the employment tribunal for the failure to consult, known as a protective award. Protective award payments can be claimed regardless of length of service and can range up to a maximum of 8 weeks pay per affected person. 

If you feel that you and your colleagues may be eligible for the protective award it is a good idea to seek legal advice on the processes to follow and ensure that the employment tribunal procedures are followed correctly.

At Stephensons Solicitors LLP we have a team of employment law specialists who are experienced in pursuing protective award claims on behalf of groups of claimants, and are often able to assist utilising a no win no fee.

By Joanne Ribchester, employment law and discrimination team