COVID 19 – Redundancies
s139 Employment Rights Act 1996 defines redundancy. Whilst not ideal, many businesses may have no alternative because;
- they cease or intend to cease to carry on the business for the purposes of which the employee was employed or more likely,;
- the requirements of the business for employees to carry out work of particular kind generally or;
- in the place where the employee was employed have ceased or diminished or are expected to do so.
As already explained in the post regarding the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, this is a Grant which is intended to avoid redundancies. In the event of redundancy dismissal this will need to be carried out fairly otherwise there is a risk of a claim for unfair dismissal.
If you are an employer you must ensure that
- You give adequate warning;
- Consult properly and fairly with each individual or with unions;
- You must adopt and apply a fair selection criteria and process;
- Although likely to be difficult if you have reached redundancy stage, you must consider alternative employment;
- It is wise to maintain written records of all of your actions taken, in the event a dispute arises.
Even given the circumstances any redundancies will become liable for statutory and/or contractual redundancy payments in the ordinary way.
If more than 20 staff are affected, the collective consultation provisions apply and should be followed.
Contact us if you are unsure of your rights