Redundancy

Redundancy is most commonly where you are dismissed because the business requires fewer employees to carry out work of a particular kind. Unlike other forms of dismissal, it is due to the needs of the business and is not because there is a specific issue with you.

Your employer should try other options before making you redundant. Other options include giving you a different job. Your employer must also consult you before making you redundant and follow a fair procedure when selecting who is to be made redundant – if they don’t do this they are in danger of unfairly dismissing you.

Redundancy payments

As long as you have worked for your employer for at least two years you will (in most cases) be entitled to some form of redundancy payment. The amount you get will depend on the length of time you have been in your job, your age, how much you earn and whether your employer ‘enhances’ the redundancy payment.

If you qualify for a redundancy payment the minimum amount you will receive is calculated like this:

  • for each complete year of employment after your 41st birthday you should get one-and-a-half weeks’ pay;
  • for each complete year of employment after your 22nd birthday that is not covered by the previous bullet point you should get one week’s pay;
  • or every other complete year of employment not covered by either of the two previous bullet points you should get half a week’s pay.

But you can only count:

  • to the last 20 years’ service;
  • your pay up to the weekly limit which is currently £450 (unless your employer ‘enhances’ redundancy pay by waiving this ceiling).

The first £30,000 of your redundancy payment is tax-free. You can apply for Jobseeker’s Allowance if you receive a redundancy payment.

The Gov.UK calculator will help you work out your redundancy entitlement (though it will only work out statutory minimum redundancy payments, not enhanced ones), or UNISON West Sussex members can contact the Branch office for help.