Contemplating redundancies is never easy, but when a redundancy situation does arise, it is vitally important you follow strict procedures.
Let our Redundancy solicitors help you and your business through the process.
The redundancy process can be a stressful time for both employer and employee. As an employer, if the correct redundancy process is not followed, you could open yourself up for unfair dismissal or discrimination claims brought forward by the employees who have been made redundant.
Not only would this cost you and your company time and money to deal with, but it could also harm your commercial reputation.
At Smooth Commercial Law, we have a team of expert Liverpool, Manchester and St Helens employment law solicitors that can guide your business through the process of making employees redundant.
Our specialist redundancy solicitors can ensure the legal obligations are adhered to and that your redundancy process is watertight. We can help you feel confident that you are treating your employees fairly, while also protecting your business from any potential claims further down the line.
The Redundancy Process for Employers
To begin the redundancy process, you need to ask three questions:
- Are you closing part of the operation of a business for which an employee was employed?
- Are you closing the place of business or relocating?
- Do your business needs mean it is necessary to make a reduction in the number of employees required to carry out work of a particular kind?
If you answer yes to one or more of the above questions, it is worthwhile seeking legal advice in the first instance to see what options are available to you. Redundancy is seen as a last resort measure and should not be used to address other employment matters.
Next, comes the actual process of redundancy. Each business is different, and the process will differ depending on your circumstance. However, there are generally three parts of the process that are vital.
- Consult - Employee or employees should be consulted prior to a decision being made regarding redundancy. This consultation should include:
- How you will choose people for redundancy
- How long the decisions will take
- What meetings employees can go to and when
- How employees can appeal if they are chosen for redundancy
- Search for alternative roles – An employer also has a legal duty to consider other employment opportunities for employees. This only applies if the redundancy is only affecting one or a limited number of employees. Employment opportunities should encompass the immediate business organisation, as well as any opportunities within group companies or subsidiaries.
- Selection Process – If more than one employee will be affected by the redundancy, a pool of employees should be identified, and selection criteria agreed upon. These criteria must not be discriminatory and must be objective.
Examples of a genuine redundancy situation
An employer must be able to prove that a dismissal on grounds of redundancy is fair. In this sense, there must be a genuine redundancy situation. Generally, we see three occurrences of this:
- A closure or intended closure of the business
- A closure or intended closure of the actual place of work where the employee is employed
- The requirements of the business for the employee to carry out work of a particular kind has or will either cease or diminish
What redundancy services do we offer?
Our specialist redundancy solicitors can guide you through the strict legal procedures to ensure you adhere to the redundancy process. We can help you understand your legal obligations, to ensure you do not leave yourself open to potential claims from the exiting employees.
We can provide advice relating to:
- The fair selection of employees
- Which employees are entitled to statutory redundancy pay
- Advice on the appropriate warnings needed
- The redundancy consultation process
- Finding alternative employment opportunities
- The use of settlement agreements
- Dealing with unfair dismissal or discrimination claims
How can Smooth Commercial Law help?
As an employer, thinking about making redundancies is never straightforward. Employers need to have a clear understanding of the requirements and obligations the process places upon them, and need expert legal advice throughout.
Our Liverpool, Manchester and St Helens Redundancy solicitors can offer clear and pragmatic redundancy advice for small, medium and large businesses in England and Wales. We will explain everything in plain English, and help your business through an already challenging time. Our friendly team can provide advice to assist you in making the best decision for your company and your employees.
If you have any questions about making redundancies, the processes, and the potential legal pitfalls, contact our experienced Liverpool, Manchester, St Helens, and North West discrimination at work solicitors by calling 0800 046 9976 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also contact us through our enquiry form here.