Your rights during redundancy

Suitable alternative employment 

You may get the chance of another job with your employer instead of being made redundant.  

If a suitable job comes up in your company or organisation your employer must offer it to you rather than make you redundant. You don’t have to take the job if you don’t think it’s suitable.

Whether a job is suitable usually depends on:

  • how much you’ll be paid and what benefits you’ll get, eg pension
  • where the job is – it may be further for you to travel
  • how similar the role is to your current job
  • what terms you’re being offered
  • your skills and abilities in relation to the job

When you should get a job offer

The offer of another job should come before your current job ends. The new job should also start within 4 weeks of your current job ending. If not you’ll still qualify as redundant and should get redundancy pay.

Trial period

You have the right to a 4 week trial period in an alternative job. This should start after you’ve worked your notice period and your existing contract has ended. This avoids any confusion or disputes if the trial doesn’t work out.

It’s a good idea to get the dates for the trial period in writing – if you need longer to train for a job get your employer’s agreement in writing with a clear end date.

You can try each job for 4 weeks if you’re offered more than one.

If you both agree it’s not working out during the trial period - you can still get redundancy pay.

Turning down the job

You need to tell your employer in writing during the trial period if you think the job isn’t suitable. If you don’t you could lose your right to redundancy pay.

You need to have a good reason why it isn’t suitable. This could be, for example:

  • the job is on lower pay
  • health issues stop you from doing the job
  • you have difficulty getting there, for example because of a longer journey, higher cost or lack of public transport
  • it would cause disruption to your family life

Your contract could have a ‘mobility clause’ that says you have to work anywhere your employer asks you to. This may mean that turning a job down because of its location could risk your right to redundancy pay.

If your employer doesn’t accept your reasons

If your employer doesn’t accept your reasons for turning down the job they could refuse to pay your redundancy pay.

Have an informal chat with your employer and ask them why they don’t accept your reasons. Explain why you think the job isn’t suitable.

If they still don’t accept your reasons call the Acas helpline for advice.

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