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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 69034
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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I have found out that my employer intends to fold in his

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Hi, I have found out that my employer intends to fold in his business and retire in a couple of years time. Apparently he is planning to slowly reduce the amount of work he takes on (Building Contractor) and 'lay-off' staff on the basis there isn't enough work to keep them on so that he doesn't have to pay our redundancy etc. I am worried about where I stand with this? I work in the office and do all of the company's paperwork and have done so for almost 15 years.
JA: Have you discussed this with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: I am the manager/HR. I have not discussed it with a lawyer no.
JA: What is your employment status? Are you an employee, freelancer, consultant or contractor? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: An Employee.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I don't think there's anything else no.

Hello, I’m Ben, a UK lawyer and will be dealing with your case today. I may also need to ask some questions to determine the legal position.

What do you specifically want to know about this please? Please note I am mobile today so may not be able to reply until later today thanks

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hi Ben, I basically would like to know where I stand if my employer does this. Can he just sack me because he's folding the company? Would he have to pay me redundancy? I am worried he is just going to fold the business and I will be left jobless and woth nothing after 15 years at the firm.

Many thanks for your patience. If an employee has been continuously employed with their employer for at least 2 years they will be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that to fairly dismiss them the employer has to show that there was a potentially fair reason for dismissal and that a fair dismissal procedure was followed.

According to the Employment Rights Act 1996 there are five separate reasons that an employer could rely on to show that a dismissal was fair: conduct, capability, redundancy, illegality or some other substantial reason (SOSR). The employer will not only need to show that the dismissal was for one of those reasons, but also justify that it was appropriate and reasonable to use in the circumstances. In addition, they need to ensure that a fair dismissal procedure was followed and that the outcome was one that a reasonable employer would have come to in the circumstances.

The folding of a business would amount to redundancy and whilst hey do not have to consider it until it has actually happened, if they try and dismiss you before that, they must do it for one of the above-mentioned reasons. So unless suddenly you have done something which amounts to serious misconduct or your performance has become so poor that they eventually consider you cannot do your job, any potential dismissal will likely be unfair and can be challenged in the Employment Tribunal.

Does this answer your query?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Good afternoon Ben,
Thank you for your reply. This does answer my query thank you and also puts my mind at ease knowing there would be a road I could go down if necessary (hopefully it doesn't come to that though). Thanks for your help.

All the best

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