Dismissal of an employee is a form of dismissal because their role is made redundant due to a lawful reason. It is vital that employers manage the redundancy process fairly. Failure to do so may result in costly employment law litigation if an ex-employee considers a redundancy procedure was not followed or they were selected unfairly due to their sex or gender, which will render a redundancy termination as unfair dismissal and lead to discrimination claims.
There has to be a genuine reason for a redundancy and these are defined by statute such as business closures or relocations, or a reduction in the number of staff required to do a particular kind of work. Most redundancies are nevertheless initiated by the need to restructure or reorganise a business due to genuine economic circumstances, which require significant streamlining for efficiency.
Fair Selection & Process
Even if the redundancy is based on a genuine reason, employers may not be able to demonstrate that they implemented a fair procedure in executing their redundancy plan. The law obliges employers to consult with their employees, and if there are more than 20 employees involved, 30 days must be allowed for consultations.
Employers must also identify an objectively fair selection criteria and justify the reasons for selecting a pool or persons for redundancies. Those selected must be advised in writing why they have been selected and given fair opportunity to appeal the decision. A failure to do this may result in costly unfair dismissal claims or protective awards.
Consultations have to be genuine attempts to elicit views of employees and to consider ways in which redundancies can be avoided. This means considering alternatives such as job sharing, salary reductions, and redeployment, and keeping employees informed of the reasons for the redundancy and the numbers that are likely to be affected through consultations.
How can we assist?
Our employment solicitors specialising in redundancy dismisals can advise you throughout the redundancy process. If your redundancy has been confirmed, redundancy rights and entitlements will accrue, we can advise you on your redundancy pay rights, or connected notice and holiday pay disputes that may arise upon termination of your contract giving rise to claims of wrongful dismissal.
Employment Lawyers, Canary Wharf, London
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