Redundancy Law

Redundancy law

Redundancy is a form of dismissal.

You must have been dismissed because you are genuinely redundant otherwise you may well have a claim for unfair dismissal.

Employers often claim that people have been made redundant when it is in fact unfair dismissal to avoid making a redundancy payment.

It will be unfair if your employer:

  • Has failed to identify an appropriate pool for selection.
  • Has failed to consult with individuals in the pool
  • Has applied a subjective selection criteria to those in the pool
  • Has not considered suitable alternative employment where appropriate, subject to a trial period

There are certain circumstances where the selection of an employee for redundancy will be automatically unfair. These include: selecting an employee for a reason connected to pregnancy or parental leave, on the grounds that they have made a protective disclosure and on the grounds that they have alleged an infringement of a statutory right.

There are many options an employer should consider before making compulsory redundancies. These include:

  • Suspending or slowing down recruitment.
  • Stopping or reducing the use of agency workers.
  • Not renewing contractors' contracts.
  • Reduction or removal of overtime opportunities.

If these options have been ineffective in removing the need to make compulsory redundancies, the employer should then consider:

  • Inviting potentially redundant employees to apply for suitable alternative vacancies.
  • Inviting employees to volunteer for redundancy.
  • Inviting employees to consider early retirement.


You should have been selected for redundancy fairly, been fully consulted, given the correct notice period, discussed alternatives and received the correct amount of redundancy pay. If you have not, then you may have a claim for unfair dismissal.

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