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Any experts on employment law out there? Need help

(6 Posts)
Twattybollocks Thu 17-Jan-13 12:56:01

We own a small business employing 4 staff and are looking at reducing staff due to a competitor opening up in our locality having affected our sales.. I will be looking at working the hours which are left free by the person we make redundant. We took over this business less than 2 years ago, however all of the staff were employed by the previous owner but were paid cash and had no written contract of employment.
I need to know
A) if we can make someone redundant, and I as an existing employee can take up their hours (clearly I will be working for nothing as the owner)
B) the person we have in mind works the least hours of all the staff, I can cover these hours easily, and would not need to inconvenience other staff by changing their hours around etc. (there are issues with trust also but nothing concrete enough to consider gross misconduct)
C) does the cash in hand work without contract count towards the employees continuous service in regards to redundancy?
I don't like the thought of making anyone redundant, but something needs to give or the business will fold and we will all be out of a job.
Do the above seem reasonable grounds for selection of a staff member for redundancy, ie hours worked can be easily covered by another staff member? The person is more qualified than me, but at the moment their skills are not being utilised and I am more than capable of doing the job as they do it now.

Lonecatwithkitten Thu 17-Jan-13 22:39:38

Being an employer myself I would say this is an area in which investing some money in formal legal advice to make sure you get it right is essential. What I do know is that when you acquired the business even without written contracts TUPE applies to employees that came with the business so any redundancy needs to be based not on the two years you have owned the business, but the entire time they have worked.

olgaga Thu 17-Jan-13 22:45:46

I would also recommend you get proper advice. You could call the ACAS helpline on 08457 47 47 47. They also have good information on their website here.

ThingummyBob Thu 17-Jan-13 22:51:07

You need advice tailored to your circumstances I'd say.

Is it a ltd company? is that why you refer to yourself as an employee? If so you might have issues with redundancy if you don't get it properly arranged. Best to spend a bit now rather than costly legal issues which could arise after iyswim?

flowery Fri 18-Jan-13 09:53:56

You're an employer, and you really need to pay for proper advice tailored to your circumstances. You owe it to your employees and it's a good business investment as well, as otherwise you are at risk of a legal claim against you.

Twattybollocks Fri 18-Jan-13 15:18:33

Ok folks, thanks for the contacts and advice, we are looking at a hr consultancy at the moment for some specialist help

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