When a firm makes more than 20 or 100 people redundant such as through closing down a factory site, very special rules apply as to an employer’s obligations to its workforce. Failure on the Employer’s part such as when closures occur out of the blue and almost overnight can lead to employees being able to make a claim even if the company has gone into administration or liquidation and the company no longer exists. Most typically the claim is for what is known as a Protective Award.
What happens if, during an employee’s absence on maternity leave, an employer discovers that an employee had not been doing the work they should have been doing or, alternatively, finds that their maternity cover replacement is much better at the job?
A Protective Award is an award of compensation of up to 90 days’ gross pay, that can be awarded by an Employment Tribunal, for failure by your employer to collectively inform and consult you where you have been dismissed on the grounds of redundancy. This applies to dismissals of 20 or more employees, within a 90 day period.
If such dismissals should occur, your trade union or employee representatives (if any) can put forward a claim to the tribunal on your behalf. If there is no trade union or elected employee representatives, then you can pursue the claim yourself or in conjunction with your fellow workers.
The redundancy procedure currently in place is set to change on 6 April 2013, which will see alterations made to the regulations surrounding larger scale redundancies.