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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 49816
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I am going through a structural reorganisation at work and

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I am going through a structural reorganisation at work and the consultation period completed 11/6/14. We now have to competitively apply for the remaining posts within the organisation, with potentially 4 managers being made compulsory redundant. The original at risk letter stated that the option for Voluntary Redundancy is available and we have not been informed that this offer is not available. On 13/06/14 I asked for VR but have not yet gained agreement, where 2 other manager's got an agreement in 1 hour. Can my company refuse to give me VR and on what grounds? I do not intend to apply for any new roles in the company, which needs to be done by noon this Tues - does this mean I would be made redundant? What is the best way to secure my redundancy payment? I think my employer suspects I have a job offer at another company, could this effect my redundancy, though I intend to take some time out before starting anything new and have a number of options, including a business opportunity that the redundancy pay will be needed. Please advise?

Ben Jones :

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

Customer: 16 year
Ben Jones :

Why are you not applying for any other positions - are they not suitable?

Customer: I have decided I want out and look for new opportunities
Ben Jones :

But are any of these positions suitable for you to do when compared to what you used to do until now?

Customer: yes
Ben Jones :

ok thanks let me get my response ready please


ok thanks

Customer: why have you stepped out
Customer: hi how long will you be with an answer
Ben Jones :

I am still here, I have to check a few things on other pages

Customer: No probs
Ben Jones :

It is entirely possible for the employer to refuse your request for VR and they do not have to give any reasons for doing so. VR is where employees are given the opportunity to volunteer to be made redundant instead of going through the compulsory redundancy process but that does not mean their request will be accepted or even considered. The employer has the final say as to who they allow to leave under VR and if they do not wish to let some employees go through it, whilst allowing others to do so, that would not be unlawful. They just have to be careful not to discriminate between them based on any protected characteristic, such as gender, age, race, religion, etc. However, if none of these apply, then the employer has the final say as to who is granted VR and who is not.


The issue you face by not applying for any new roles is that you are then likely to be considered as having resigned and may lose your entitlement to any redundancy pay. In a redundancy situation the employer has a duty to offer you the chance to apply for any suitable alternative employment positions that may be available in order to avoid having to make you redundant. If such positions are offered to you but you unreasonably refuse to apply for them or simply reject them, you will be resigning and will not be made redundant so you will not be entitled to any redundancy pay. You will only keep your redundancy pay if the offer was unsuitable or it was reasonably rejected. You have said that the offers you have are suitable and as such you will be expected to apply for them and be considered for them. You will only be able to be made redundant if you are unsuccessful in these and the employer has to then make you redundant, assuming no other suitable vacancies exist.

Customer: The 2 managers that they agreed VR are close to retirement, so can they be seen to discriminate on the grounds of age (I am 45)
Ben Jones :

Not necessarily as you would have to show that the reason they were given redundancy is due to their age, in fact often this may go against you because the older employees would usually get higher redundancy payments so it does not work in your favour that the ones that were chosen were selected due to their age as the employer would likely be paying them even more than you. Also it could be a coincidence - that is possible. Had you been the older one and the employer selected younger employees instead, in order to avoid having to pay you higher redundancy, then that may have been more helpful to your case

Customer: Thanks for this, really useful
Ben Jones :

You are most welcome

Customer: You need to exit the chat for me to rate you
Ben Jones :

Apologies for that, there is a bug in the system which we sometimes get and it prevents you from posting your rating. Instead, you can just type your selection on here (e.g. OK, Good, Excellent) then we will process it manually later. Thank you

Customer: excellent
Ben Jones :

Many thanks, noted

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