being offered voluntary redundancy. 8 weeks preg.

(6 Posts)
EntWife Fri 18-Jan-13 08:22:06

Hello. I would really appreciate some help with my current situation. I am just finishing maternity leave for dd2. I am supposed to go back to work on the 11th Feb. We discovered on xmas day that I am unexpectantly pregnant with dc3. I thought it best to give my boss as much notice as possible so met with him this week to give him the news and discuss my return. His reaction was to make me an informal redundancy offer. A more formal offer will be coming through later today.

Apparently everyone coped so well with my workload spread out amongst my colleagues it was thought that my role was not really needed any more. also he does not think that me returning for 5 months is practical for the business. angry

By the time the redundancy is finalised I will likely be approx 10 -12 weeks pregnant. Obviously I won't qualify for SMP as I won't be employed and I won't be any where near my qualifying week. Does anyone know if I will be entitled to maternity allowance? I have looked on the gov websites to try and deterMine my eligibility but am confused as to whether maternity leave is classed as employment for the purposes of assessment, whether the redundancy payment will affect my eligibility or my husbands income.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated. smile

muffymiffy Wed 23-Jan-13 22:23:08

I think you should seek urgent legal advice. My suggestion is to google search for a no win no fee employment lawyer as if they tell you you have a case, you know you're on good ground and you won't have spent any money.

In the meanwhile you should know your rights. You have quite a bit of legal protection as you are both on maternity leave still and pregnant. As far as I know, this is automatically grounds for unfair dismissal and you should tell your boss so.

See this link from Acas http://www.acas.org.uk/media/pdf/r/f/Managing-redundancy-for-pregnant-employees-or-those-on-maternity-leave-accessible-version.pdf

Here's a useful summary:

unfavourable treatment of a woman because she is pregnant or on maternity leave is unlawful. This means a woman doesn’t have to compare her treatment with anyone else to show direct pregnancy and maternity discrimination.
• A woman on maternity leave has the right to return to the same job
before she left; an interim employee cannot be given her job even if
you think the person is a better employee.
• Selecting a woman for redundancy because of her pregnancy,
maternity leave or a related reason is automatically unfair dismissal
as well as being unlawful discrimination.
• Failure to consult a woman on maternity leave about possible
redundancy is likely to be unlawful discrimination.
• A woman made redundant while on maternity leave must be offered
any suitable alternative vacancy if you have one. She doesn’t need
to apply for it.
• Special provision for a woman in connection with pregnancy or
childbirth is not sex discrimination against a man provided that the
action you take does not go beyond what is necessary to rectify her
disadvantage. For example, health and safety laws provide for
special treatment.

Basically making you redundant because you are pregnant or on maternity leave is unlawful because it is discriminatory.

This link is also helpful. http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/advice-and-guidance/before-the-equality-act/guidance-for-employers-pre-october-10/guidance-on-managing-new-and-expectant-parents/managing-pregnant-women/redundancy-and-dismissal-during-pregnancy-and-maternity-leave/

Hope that helps

GingerJulep Fri 25-Jan-13 23:40:27

In addition to the above...

Would the offer (which I'm assuming would be more than the statutory minimum) be worth it? I.e. would it more than cover your 5 months salary + whatever mat pay you would have got?

If not then you probably don't want it.

But either way you probably want to start looking for a new role before returning to work after DC3.

EntWife Mon 28-Jan-13 19:24:59

Thanks for the reply. Have done a load of googling and have retained a specialist employment lawyer today. Work are sending through the compromise agreement and once we have that we can take it from there.

Work are trying to low ball me and seem oblivious to the risk of a discrimination claim against them. Though I think the whole situation is disgusting I would take the redundancy if the offer was good enough. It is not at the moment and they are trying to offer me the standard package they would offer someone who can just go out and get another job. angry

Frogcatcher Sun 23-Jun-13 21:18:11

That sounds like you should have a good case there at the very least to get more money from your employer. I was offered voluntary severance when 8 weeks pg & I went straight back & told them I was pg so the offer did not cover what I would have got if I'd stayed & taken maternity pay. They increased my offer by 20%!

Champagnebubble Mon 15-Jul-13 17:30:52

That's not a redundancy, they are trying to make you an offer for you to go quietly and packaging it up as a more palatable redundancy. I'm sure your employment lawyer has told you this now though grin Hang in there for a good offer to cover all your maternity leave plus loss of earnings based on the time you are out of work and the length of time it will take you to find a comparable job afterwards. Alternative is to go to an employment tribunal with a jolly good claim for discrimination. Good luck.

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