Short Time Working or Laid Off

Placed on Short Time Working or Laid Off

An employee may be entitled to redundancy pay if he/she is laid off without pay or placed on short term working for less than half his/her normal hours. Entitlement depends on whether:

– his right to be paid under his contract will depend on the employer providing him with work to do under that contract;

– the lay off or short-time working lasts for 4 or more consecutive weeks or 6 weeks in a 13 week period of which no more than 3 weeks of the 6 week period were consecutive short time weeks;

– the short term working results in less than half a week’s normal pay;

– the employee complies with the notice and counter notification procedure set out in the Employment Rights Act 1996.

The employee must notify the employer that he intends to claim redundancy pay because of the lay off or short time working within the required time periods. He also will need to resign but it is wise to check that the employer will not be paying you for the weeks of missing short pay or weeks of no pay. The conditions can be read in sections 148 to 152 of the Employment Rights Act 1996.

TIP – the aim of these sections is to prevent an employer from placing an employee on contractual terms that allow a lay off or short time working to continue for an indefinite period. This is relevant to employees such as piece time workers.