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Redundancies, restructuring and insolvency

The government’s furlough scheme offered some immediate help to organisations during the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, with this due to come to an end in April 2021, and long term structural change now seemingly inevitable for employers in nearly all sectors in any event, businesses are already grappling with how to manage the longer term economic impacts of Covid-19.

Most employers will have already taken steps to reduce operating costs. Recruitment freezes may already be in place, discretionary benefits and bonuses might have been cut back, pay may have been reduced or frozen, contingent staff may have been let go, and fixed-term contracts might not have been extended.  For employers using the furlough scheme, reabsorbing all payroll costs when it comes to an end will be particularly challenging. Employers need to consider how to manage costs moving forward: redundancies, restructuring and other cost control measures such as (further) pay cuts will be unavoidable for many.

Employers need to be mindful of the usual redundancy requirements such as collective consultation obligations, fair selection criteria and avoiding discrimination, and they will also need to adapt to the challenges of holding online consultation meetings while many workers are furloughed, self-isolating or working remotely (see our FAQs on post-Covid restructuring).


Further reading

Contract breaking up is never easy


14 April 2021

This Inbrief looks at how employers can minimise the risk of legal claims when dismissing employees by reason of redundancy.


I’m still standing - should employers set up a standing body for collective consultation?

10 March 2021

Employers may have to contemplate difficult decisions as they look ahead to the lasting effects of the pandemic, including potentially making redundancies. This article discusses whether now might be an opportune time for employers with no recognised trade union to set up a standing body for collective consultation purposes.


Restructuring the workplace post Covid-19 - FAQs for employers

09 March 2021

The furlough scheme may have been extended to 30 September 2021, but employers are looking ahead to cost-saving measures in the face of ongoing economic challenges.

Contract breaking up is never easy

Collective redundancy consultation – do you need to look back before moving forward?

02 December 2020

A recent European Court of Justice ruling suggests that employers should look at a “rolling” 90-day period when ascertaining whether collective redundancy consultation is required. While this has potentially significant implications, the end of the Brexit transition period may limit its fallout.


Information and consultation

10 July 2020

Employers with at least 50 employees can be required to establish arrangements for informing and consulting their employees on business developments. These arrangements are commonly called ‘works councils’.


Insolvency and TUPE

21 May 2020

This Inbrief aims to guide you through the law on transfers of undertakings (TUPE) in the context of an insolvency, summarising the main employment considerations.


Collective redundancies

05 May 2020

Most employers are aware of the procedures that have to be followed when making someone redundant (or their job, to be more precise).

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