Changes to redundancy and notice periods – Jersey Employment LawThursday, August 19th, 2010
The following changes to Jersey employment law took effect from 6 August 2010, under provisions in the Employment (Amendment No. 5) (Jersey) Law 2010. They relate in particular to the new right to redundancy pay.
- An employer must make a redundancy payment to an employee who is dismissed by reason of redundancy. The employee must have been continuously employed for a period of two years up to the effective date of termination. There is no upper age limit and no limit to the length of the period of employment. The amount of the payment is one “week’s pay” (as already defined in the Employment Law) for each completed year of employment. The amount of one “week’s pay” is limited to the latest average weekly earnings figure published by the States of Jersey Statistics Unit at least one month prior to the effective date of termination.
- The latest average earnings figure is £620 per week (June 2009). The figure for June 2010 is due to be released on 25 August 2010.
- Unless the employer pays the redundancy automatically, the employee, within six months of termination, must make a written claim for payment, or have started Tribunal proceedings to establish entitlement to redundancy pay. A Tribunal may also, at its discretion, award a redundancy payment within one year of termination.
- There is no entitlement to redundancy pay if the employee’s contract is renewed or the employee is re-engaged under a new contract before termination and the renewal or re-engagement takes effect within four weeks of termination.
However, entitlement is not lost if the terms and conditions under the new or renewed contract differ wholly or in part from the old contract and, within four weeks of starting under the new contract, or an agreed longer period, the employer or the employee decides that the new contract is not suitable.
- Consultation is required between employer and employee representatives if it is proposed to dismiss as redundant two or more employees where there is a recognised trade union, or six or more employees otherwise, within a 90-day period. Consultation must start at least 30 days before the first dismissal is to take effect. There is provision for a Tribunal to make a protective award of up to 13 weeks’ pay if the employer fails to consult and, in this situation, there is no cap to a “week’s pay”.
- During notice of dismissal for redundancy, an employee who will have at least 2 year’s continuous employment at termination is entitled to paid time off to look for work or arrange for training. The hourly rate of pay is a “week’s pay” divided by the normal hours of work, or by the average normal hours over 12 weeks if greater.
- Employees’ representatives are similarly entitled to paid time off to perform their duties.
An additional change, prompted by the introduction of these redundancy pay rights, is a reduction in the notice periods that must be given by employers when terminating employment. The current periods of notice were intended to compensate employees for the lack of redundancy legislation when they were increased in 1994. They are now reduced to the same levels as apply in the UK, but still higher than they were before 1994. The new notice periods apply to employees who have been continuously employed for one week or more.
|Period of continuous employment||Period of notice|
|Less than 2 years||1 week|
|More than 2 but less than 3 years||2 weeks|
|More than 3 but less than 4 years||3 weeks|
|More than 4 but less than 5 years||4 weeks|
|More than 5 but less than 6 years||5 weeks|
|More than 6 but less than 7 years||6 weeks|
|More than 7 but less than 8 years||7 weeks|
|More than 8 but less than 9 years||8 weeks|
|More than 9 but less than 10 years||9 weeks|
|More than 10 but less than 11 years||10 weeks|
|More than 11 but less than 12 years||11 weeks|
|12 years or more||12 weeks|