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Senior Partner
Senior Partner, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 13329
Experience:  Solicitor with more than 30 years experience
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Hi! I am a UK based employer (an SME) that is about to receive

Customer Question

Hi! I am a UK based employer (an SME) that is about to receive a team of 14 van sales people from a large organisation as part of a TUPE process. Our standard t's and c's include redundancy terms at statutory level; the company from which they are transferring typically offers enhanced redundancy terms - though at their discretion, not contractually. When the team TUPEs across, provided they are informed that the redundancy terms of their new contract with us will be "statutory", are there any circumstances under which we would be obliged to preserve the enhanced payment terms of their originating employer? Are we, for example obliged to honour them for a defined period of time?
Many thanks in advance
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Senior Partner replied 5 years ago.
Thanks for your question. TO be honest I am not surprised that you are receiving ambiguous or conflicting advice. The legal position is that employees subject to TUPE retain their contractual rights and you cannot impose on them your current terms - at least at the time of transfer. The issue is what are their terms ?

Where the employer has operated a generous redundancy policy, the issue is whether by conduct it has become contractual. Essentially if the employer has acted in a consistent way over a period of time on redundancy then it is quite possible that their policy has become part of the terms and conditions of the employees. On the other hand if there has only been one or two redundancies in the past that were individually negotiated then it is unlikely that the terms will become binding for all employees.

So it really turns on the overall conduct of the transferring employer. I doubt if that makes it much clearer but my advice is that whether you are bound by the previous employers redundancy terms is a question of fact. I.e it requires a determination based on all the circumstances.

If the transferor has had multiple redundancies and used the same terms then you can take it you are bound and to change the terms will require you to reach an agreement with the affected employees.