Consultation obligations and redundancy entitlements have not changed as a result of Covid-19, and employers are still legally obliged to follow a fair selection and consultation procedure and meet statutory and contractual entitlements in the event dismissals are to be made.
Where employees are either on furlough or working from home, consultation meetings can be set up as video or conference calls to facilitate discussions. Where virtual meetings are arranged employees should be reminded that the meetings are confidential, someone will be present to take notes and that the call should not be recorded.
Although the statutory right to be accompanied to meetings does not apply in a redundancy situation it is recognised as good practice to offer the right to bring a colleague or trade union rep as a companion. This should still be offered where consultation meetings are taking place remotely and virtual break out rooms can be used to allow private discussion between employee and companion.
We discussed alternatives to redundancy in our June update here and notice pay for those on furlough and being made redundant here. Some helpful and free guidance is also available on the Department for Work and Pensions factsheet published on 21st August 2020, which includes links to the Rapid Response Service and further redundancy information on gov.uk, Acas, HMRC, the Insolvency Service, and PACE Scotland. We also discuss below the new Job Support Scheme which may provide a viable option for employers with reduced need for work over the winter but who do not wish to lose valuable employees.
We are happy to offer a fixed fee for employer clients embarking on a redundancy process. Feel free to contact us for further details.Back to news list