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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70832
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I have a question about redundancy, Uk, I was made

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I have a question about redundancy
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Uk
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I was made redundant, served almost all of my notice period and was then asked back to cover someone, which I accepted. The company then extended my notice period. Meanwhile, a job has opened up in the dept I am in to which I have applied for. I have been told if I am successful with the application I will not receive redundancy pay for my previous role
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: The job I was previously in was a senior role whereas the new one is not

Hello, I’m Ben. It’s my pleasure to assist you today. I may also ask for some preliminary information to help me determine the legal position.

Customer: replied 7 days ago.

Ok, no problem

Hi there. Can I just check, how long have you worked for this employer? and did you receive any formal notification of the extended notice period?

Customer: replied 7 days ago.

I have worked there for 6 years and I received a letter from HR of the extended notice period

OK I understand and thank you for providing this information. Please do not worry and leave it with me for now; I will get back to you with my answer as soon as I can, which will be at some point today. The system will notify you when this happens. Please do not reply in the meantime as this may unnecessarily delay my response. Many thanks.

Many thanks for your patience, I am pleased to be able to continue assisting with your query now.

As part of a fair redundancy procedure, employers are required to offer suitable alternative employment to those employees who are at risk of redundancy. The objective is to avoid having to make them redundant and keep them in a suitable job, even if they have been made redundant from their original one. This is a duty which lasts util your employment actually terminates so the employer can make such an offer at any time whilst still employed by them.

There must be an offer by the employer and that must be made before their current job officially ends. However, an offer does not mean the employee automatically gets the job in question and the employer could still potentially take them through a competitive recruitment process, such as an interview to determine their suitability.

Once an offer is made and subject to any successful selection, there are two possible outcomes:

· The employee accepts the offer – in this case their employment will continue in the new role and there would be no redundancy

· The employee rejects the offer – this should only happen if the job is not suitable and the employee reasonably rejects it. If these conditions are not met, they risk forfeiting their redundancy pay as they would be considered to have resigned instead.

As mentioned, there are two elements to a successful rejection – reasonableness and suitability. Reasonableness is based on the subjective reasons the employee has for rejecting it, such as personal circumstances, health, family commitments, etc. In the end, the main question is whether considering the particular circumstances, the employee acted reasonably in rejecting this offer.

Suitability is based on both objective and subjective criteria, with the most common factors that could make an offer unsuitable being:

· Job content/status – drop in status or significant changes in duties, which do not match the employee’s skills, experience and qualifications

· Pay and other benefits – significant drop in earnings/benefits (e.g. basic pay, bonuses, overtime, commission, etc)

· Working hours – change in shift pattern, significant extension/reduction of working hours

· Location – new workplace location, with an increased commute, making it unreasonable to travel there

· Job prospects – going from permanent to temporary or fixed-term work

Finally, where an offer of alternative employment has been made and its terms and conditions are different to the employee's current terms, they have the right to a 4-week trial period. This is an opportunity for both employer and employee to determine its suitability. If during the trial period they decide that the job is not suitable they should tell their employer straight away and terminate the trial period. Assuming the offer was not suitable and was reasonably rejected, they should still be made redundant from their original job and receive redundancy pay.

So your options are: accept the role and you lose the right to redundancy pay, or reject it for being unsuitable, assuming that is indeed the case, and get made redundant instead.

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Hopefully, I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.