What to do if you’ve been made redundant

What is redundancy?

Redundancy is when you are dismissed from your job because the employer needs to reduce their workforce, and its typically out of your control.

To be clear, being fired for misconduct, and redundancy are very different things.

What to do when you get made redundant?

You may be eligible for a number of things:

  • Redundancy pay
    • You can work this out with this calculator
    • It’s worth noting, the first £30,000 of your redundancy pay is tax-free, any sum over that will be deducted at your normal tax rate. If anything is not right, call HMRC on 0300 200 3300 (this is their taxes helpline)
  • To work a notice period
    • You’ll need to check your contract, you will be given at the very minimum one week’s notice. Alternatively, you may be paid your notice period in one lump sum and told to leave straight away, depending on the circumstances
  • Consultation with your employer
    • You have to be given an option to ask why you’re being made redundant and what the alternative solutions are
  • Option to move into a different job
    • There might be an option for you to move department, or team, for example, depending on the circumstances and your skillset. If you turn out a job that they’ve offered you as an alternative, you may forfeit redundancy pay. If you’re unsure about the new job they are offering, you are able to ‘trial’ the job for 4-weeks – this is standard practice
  • Time off to find a new job
    • If you’ve been working for a company for more than 2 years, you’re allowed time off to look for another job – the specifics will need to be discussed with your current employer
  • Holiday pay
    • You need to check that they pay you any outstanding holiday pay that you’re entitled to at the time of being made redundant
  • Bonuses/commission/expenses
    • Again, you need to check what you are owed when you leave, and whether this is something you are going to be able to claim back (if this proves tricky, see below re. making a claim to an employment tribunal)

How to find out if you’re eligible?

If your employer doesn’t automatically let you know whether you’re eligible for the above, speak to your human resource department (HR), if there is one. If you don’t have one, contact your nearest Citizens Advice, they will be able to guide you through the process.

Have you been unfairly dismissed?

It’s important to make sure you are fairly dismissed, and that the dismissal isn’t based on gender, age, religion, disability, race, marital status, etc. If you think you are being dismissed unfairly, you may be able to go to an employment tribunal (you would submit a claim and the tribunal will see what they can do/let you know what you should do).

Finding a new job fast…

If you do get made redundant and you need help to find a new job fast, you can contact Rapid Response Service. They can help you write a CV, find training for you, organise work experience/trials, and guide you through the process. The government scheme is part of The JobCentre. Contact: rrs.enquiries@dwp.gov.uk

Alternatively, click here to learn about what you need to include on your CV, click here to see what you might get asked in an interview and click here for tips on making a great first impression.

Fancy a new career altogether? You can head to National Careers Service for advise.

Lots more information on redundancy on the Citizens Advice page here