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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50148
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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Can an employer start redundancy consultation when an

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Can an employer start redundancy consultation when an employee is off sick or on a phased return to work?

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

How long have you or the employee worked there?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
24 years

OK, thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you in a short while. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not responded to this message as it will just push your questions to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Thanks for your patience. There is nothing in law which prevents an employer from conducting a redundancy consultation whilst an employee is off on sick leave or on a phased return to work. What is important is that the employee is not treated detrimentally as a result of their position. So as far as possible they should be treated equally to other employees who are not affected in the same way they are. Therefore, if they are unable to attend any consultation meeting the employer should ensure that they do not miss out on this part and make arrangements to discuss the issues covered in such consultation meetings with them. Similarly, if the employee needs any adjustments made during the process to help them to either engage in the consultation or have things explained to them, the employer should make the effort to ensure this is done and that any potential adverse effects are minimised as much as possible.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the options the employee has if they believe they are treated detrimentally in the circumstances, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is only me who is facing this redundancy and I have been invited to consultation meeting on Monday but feel too unwell to attend. Are you saying this will carry on regardless? Or by being off sick if I say that I want to delay and start the process when I am well and ready to attend face to face meeting? what will this mean in practice?

The employer is not obliged to put a redundancy on hold just because someone is off sick. Often the redundancy will be required to proceed without delay due to business needs so the fact that someone is off sick would not automatically mean it is delayed. If you are too unwell to attend consultation meetings then the employer may use other methods that may be more suitable, such as by sending you the information in the post or talking over the phone. They may be agreeable to a short delay (or any delay they want) but you cannot force that to happen so it would depend on them and how urgent the redundancy is. Does this clarify?

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. If this has answered your question please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars from the top of the page. I spend a lot of time and effort answering individual queries and I am not credited for my time until you leave your rating. If you still need further help please get back to me on here and I will assist as best as I can. Many thanks.

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