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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46780
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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My company is demoting us from area managers to lower paid

Customer Question

hi, my company is demoting us from area managers to lower paid roles, we had interviews for this process. i failed at interview and will be offered a lower paid role. Can they do this?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there for?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Just over 3 years, full time employment
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

What prompted all of this?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
They want to make the company simpler. So basically money saving
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
There where 7 area managers in my location and they have reduced to 3. This will come into effect on 1st July
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

ok so from 7 area managers they are reducing down to 3 and those who were unsuccessful were offered lower paid jobs to do instead?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
correct or they did say they don`t want too but they could give us standard redundancy if we do not want a lower paid role
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

Ok so this is a redundancy situation. The term 'redundancy' is used to describe a situation in which an employer decides to reduce the number of its employees. There are various reasons as to why redundancies may be required, such as economic pressure, changes in the nature of products/services offered, internal reorganisation, workplace relocation, etc. The reason for the proposed redundancies will rarely be challenged and the employer will simply have to justify that the actual reason satisfied the statutory definition of a redundancy, which can be found in The Employment Rights Act 1996:

1. Business closure – where the whole of the employer’s business is closed

2. Workplace closure – closure or relocation of one or more sites

3. Reduced requirement for employees to carry out work of a particular kind (this is where many employees get confused as they believe a job has to actually disappear for them to be made redundant).

It is the third reason which your situation would fall under. So as long as the employer can show that their situation fell within one of the accepted reasons for declaring a redundancy, the test will be satisfied and the focus then shifts on the remainder of the redundancy procedure. This would include what consultation took place and whether any suitable alternative employment was offered to those at risk. In your case they offered you alternative positions, which were lower paid – you do not have to take these and if you believe that they are not suitable then you would simply be entitled to redundancy instead.

I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (3, 4 or 5 stars) as that is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Hi so there is nothing I can do basically and either take the lower paid job or redundancy which is a measly £1500
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

That is correct unfortunately - companies are allowed to reduce their workforce if needed, that is why redundancy exists in employment law. So unless you can show that the selection process was unfair, i.e. you were not selected for the remaining jobs in a fair manner then they can make you redundant or offer you whatever positions are available at the time, such as the lower paid job. It is up to you which option you go for. Hope this clarifies?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
say if I prove the process was unfair what could I do? There a couple of unfair circumstances due to the process, one manager had ponger to prepare for the interview as the Regional manager doing the interviews went on holiday, also one of the area managers was removed from his position 2 years ago in the last scaling down process but was given his job back later on in the year without advertising the position internally or externally of the company? Would you think this is grounds for appeal?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

For appeal yes you can appeal on any grounds you believe are relevant such as these. But grounds to claim unfair dismissal I would say unlikely.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Constuctive dismissal if the lower wages etc will seriously affect family life and living? it is a £5000 pay cut? Would that be possible?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

The grounds would be weak for a constructive dismissal claim unfortunately. It does not prevent you from trying to negotiate with them for a settlement but actually claiming in tribunal will be quite difficult

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
i could ask for a higher redundancy payment? Possible negotiation within the appeal stage?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

yes correct, you could always threaten constructive or unfair dismissal claim just to make them reconsider their offer of redundancy. It is all about negotiating and trying to get their best offer out of them but in the end you cannot force them to so the only way would be by making a (risky) tribunal claim

If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46780
Experience: Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
Ben Jones and other Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I have rated you, thanks for your help. I am having interview feedback on Monday afternoon & then I will enter an appeal. Thanks
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

You are welcome, best of luck. Also remember that before making a clam you have ACAS to help you negotiate further with the employer for free so do not hesitate to approach them

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
excellent thanks I will contact acas on Monday morning.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 months ago.

You are welcome best of luck

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