A protective award is where an employer is required to pay employees a week's pay for each week of a specified period, known as the protected period, irrespective of whether the employee is working or not.
An Employment Tribunal can make a Protective Award where an employer dismissed as redundant 20 or more employees at one establishment within a period of 90 days or less without consultation of appropriate representatives of the affected employees.
Generally consultation must begin 30 days before the first of the dismissals takes effect, unless 100 or more redundancies are proposed in a 90 day period, in which case, consultation must begin at least 90 days before that dismissal.
Fair consultation means “consultation when the proposals are still at a formative stage; adequate information on which to respond; adequate time in which to respond and conscientious consideration by an authority of the response to consultation”.
While courts have said that there may be special circumstances in the event of a sudden disaster whether physical or financial, that makes it necessary for an employer to close down its business, however they have very little sympathy for employers who have been very aware of the financial difficulties facing their business but who have not complied with their duty to consult – for instance insolvency does not amount to a special circumstance.
Thompsons employment lawyers are specialists and are here to help you. Protective Awards if successful can award up to 90 days pay (subject to cap on weeks pay) “to compensate employees for the loss of the days of consultation….even if an employee has not suffered any financial loss”.
To claim a Protective Award, an Employment Tribunal claim must be lodged within 3 months of the date of dismissal.
YOU may be entitled to a claim a Protective Award, our specialist employment lawyers are dedicated to supporting employees with their employment difficulties.